I just bought a condo and wanted to clean or replace the motor, but I cannot for the life of me figure out how to get the motor down from the ceiling. I removed the 3 screws holding the motor and twisted it off, but the fan blades won't fit through the hole. Ignore the green arrows, but I see the metal lip on the right side of the picture. I've tried pulling and pushing up on the opposite(left) side but cannot seem to get this loose. fan with cover removed

I then unscrewed the cover over the plug to show the wiring and am wondering if I need to remove the cables and conduit in order to remove it? I really appreciate any help as I have been stumped on this for so long and all the videos and pics I can find on the internet are metal and don't match this unit. Aubrey 562 with Broan NuTone SP-61K25 motor.

wiring plate removed

  • If the fan blades won't fit through the hole, then either they're press-fit on after the motor was installed (which sounds like a lot of extra work at the factory), or there's some mechanism for easily removing the blades from the motor. Have you looked for the installation manual for this fan? It may well tell you exactly how to remove the detach the blades from the motor.
    – FreeMan
    Oct 27, 2023 at 17:11
  • BTW, how much "motor cleaning" are you doing that you need to remove it from the housing? If you just want the cruft off the blades, turn the fan on and shoot compressed air up there - it'll help knock the loose stuff off and blow it out the vent.
    – FreeMan
    Oct 27, 2023 at 17:11
  • I must be missing something, but why is a plug coming out of the unit?
    – Jon Custer
    Oct 27, 2023 at 17:25
  • @JonCuster The plug connects the motor to the black rectangular socket in the upper left of the top pic, and in the foreground of the second pic. It allows for the motor to be removed for cleaning or replacement without the home owner having to deal with wiring.
    – user71659
    Oct 27, 2023 at 21:04
  • 1
    @Mazura Thank you so much! I took out every screw I could find and disconnected the plastic from the motor which allowed me to tilt everything just enough to squeeze the fan out. The nightmare is over and I couldn't have done it without the help of this group. Oct 28, 2023 at 19:02

1 Answer 1


There's a sheet metal tab inside the left-side slot. You need to push this to the right with a flat-blade screwdriver or putty knife so the tab releases its grip on the frame. You'll pull the frame straight down. You may also need to break that piece of joint compound in the upper left corner that is preventing the frame from coming out.

  • Thank you so much for your answer @MTA. I broke off the piece of joint compound and am searching for the sheet metal tab. I'm not having much luck with my screwdriver so I may have to go buy a putty knife. Oct 27, 2023 at 22:20
  • @SwiftDeveloper A flashlight might help you see the tab.
    – MTA
    Oct 27, 2023 at 23:31

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