I've just moved into an old, historic apartment that has had some unfortunate ceiling fans & light kits installed. I'm renting of course, so I can't do much about the situation, but I'm wondering if I can add a pendant fixture? Something similar to this fixture is what I have in mind.

Pendant Lamp

My question is more along the lines of "is this physically possible & safe?" than "is this legal?" Also, I'm asking specifically if this can be done along with/in addition to the fan, not instead of.

  • Can you please reword your question to more of a technical question. We cannot help you (much) with the specifics laws and regulations in a renting situation. A large number of ceiling fans come pre-wired to accept a light add-on but with no details and/or specific question I cannot provide anymore help.
    – Jason
    Sep 8, 2013 at 23:31
  • Where do you want to add the fixture? Under the fan? In another location?
    – bib
    Sep 9, 2013 at 0:48
  • @Jason I'm wondering, specifically, if it is physically possible, and safe, to hang a pendant light (not the globe that comes with most fans) from my existing ceiling fan. I am not 100% sure, but I believe the fan is Hamilton Bay or similar(think budget, wholesale fans).
    – AMC
    Sep 9, 2013 at 3:53
  • @bib Directly under the fan, ideally replacing the globe fixture.
    – AMC
    Sep 9, 2013 at 3:53
  • 2
    Vibrations and rotational forces could potentially be transferred to the light fixture, causing it to become a whirling pendant of death. Aside from that, it may be possible depending on the fan and light fixture you're working with.
    – Tester101
    Sep 9, 2013 at 12:31

1 Answer 1


If you're looking to add a light to an existing ceiling fan, making it a combination fan/light, this will only work if (1) the fan is designed to accept an optional light add-on and (2) you use the light add-on appropriate to your fan. If you don't know what type of fan you have, this will be difficult to find, but you could start by turning off the power and seeing if you can detach a part on the bottom of the fan. If this reveals some wires or wiring terminals you may be in luck; measure any attachment points and look for an add-on from the same manufacturer that would fit.

If you're talking about just swapping out the whole fixture, you could relatively easily replace the existing ceiling fans or light fixtures with new fans or fixtures. Most fixtures are designed to attach to standard ceiling boxes. These sorts of changes can also be easily undone (remove your new fixture and reattach the old one) if needed, which may be useful in your situation. Note that if you're attaching a ceiling fan, you need to be sure the box you're attaching to is rated for fan use (i.e. has a stronger attachment to framing to support the weight/motion of the fan).

  • The fan currently has a globe fixture, pretty simple and straightforward. I believe the fan and light kit are Hamilton Bay. I'm assuming that because there is currently a light it's safe to add another light; I'm more concerned with the fan possibly causing the pendant fixture to swing/sway (and otherwise "stress" the entire unit).
    – AMC
    Sep 9, 2013 at 3:56
  • 1
    +1 But fans usually need a ceiling box specifically rated for fans that have stronger attachment points. They also need to be firmly affixed to framing, not just suspended with a flimsy brace. Hopefully that is already the case.
    – bib
    Sep 9, 2013 at 16:58
  • Good point, @bib. Added that. Sep 10, 2013 at 3:11

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