I have a ceiling fan with separate fan speed control and switch on the wall. I would like to replace it with a plain light fixture if it is not too hard to get the wiring into a safe configuration.

It is wired to a switch and fan speed control as follows:

wiring diagram

All these connections are inside the switch box with the fan control and switch, except between cable 2 and the fan.

Is it compliant and safe to simply remove the fan control and abandon the black wire in cable 2?

This is in the US. The house was built in 1950s, but the wiring in this room appears much newer.

There are a few related questions already present. I don't believe any of these cover my case, but I could be wrong.

  • Can you tell us what color the wires are in the switch box, as it would make it easier to describe the proper wiring in an answer? Also, the wires coming out of the fan should be connected to wires coming out of the ceiling (from the switches). Can you please describe that wiring?
    – Tester101
    Commented Mar 11, 2016 at 12:28
  • 1
    @Tester101, done. I appreciate the push as I understand the situation much better now.
    – Reid
    Commented Mar 12, 2016 at 4:58

3 Answers 3


Without more details about the wiring, it's impossible to provide an answer that's exactly accurate to your specific wiring.

Turn off power, and verify that it's off before you begin.

In general, there will be a grounded (neutral) wire connected to the white wire from the fan/light. This wire will have to be connected to the grounded (neutral) wire from the new light fixture. There will be one or more grounding wires from the new fixture, these will connect to the bare/green grounding conductor coming from the ceiling. Currently the grounding conductor(s) should be attached to the green wire from the fan/light.

Finally, there should be two ungrounded (hot) conductors that come from the switches. One will be attached to the black wire coming from the fan/light, while the other will be attached to the blue wire from the fan/light. The wire coming from the fan switch (attached to black wire), can be capped off using a twist-on wire connector, or other approved means. The other wire (attached to blue wire), will be connected to the ungrounded (hot) wire from the new light fixture.

If you want to remove the fan control, you'll have to remove/cap any wires that are attached to it. Then cover the empty hole with a blank insert, or half blank cover plate.

  • This accurately describes the situation, I believe.
    – Reid
    Commented Mar 18, 2016 at 3:39

I'd go with just using the wires from the Rocker switch. They should be the same wires that make it up to the ceiling fan box & are hopefully a perfect match to the new light of black, white & copper. All you'd do with the fan speed controller is throw it away & wire nut & tape those wire ends in both boxes. The new wall cover plate would be a 2-Gang Half-Blank to cover over the now abandoned fan speed controller's space.


You do not specify what items 1,3, 4 are or if you have a 3 way switch (i.e you have two switches that can control the fan/light) so going on that diagram it is difficult to tell, but it does look like a 3 way switch.

Going on that I would do as you desired - disconnect the fan control.

I would do it as follows, leaving the black wire but capping it with a wire nut on both ends (inductance will allow a small voltage to be present and to prevent electrical arcing etc. Wire nut it, then tape it.

Here is the disconnected circuit as your example with your intention.

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