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Ceiling Fan Wiring From a Wall Outlet

By Dave Rongey - Summary:

How a Wall Outlet and Switch Can Be used to Power a Ceiling Fan. Wiring From a Wall Outlet and Switch for a Ceiling Fan may be made with a simple wiring modification at the outlet which will change this but you it must be modified only if the new function will work for you.

Using a Wall Outlet and Switch for a Ceiling Fan

Electrical Question: Home Electrical Wiring Project – I am adding a ceiling fan to the room. I have a switch that currently controls one of the outlets in the room. I want to hook into this line so I can power the a fan switch. What I found is that the power comes to the switch from the outlet (1 black, 1 white, 1 ground). In the outlet I have two wires (white) and 1 black. Additionally in the box the other black is tied to 2 whites. I am totally lost. I can get the outlet to work but not the fan and visa verse. I feel that I need to do something at the outlet to make this works, but I am not sure.
Thanks for your help.

This electrical wiring question came from: David, a Homeowner from Surf City, NJ.
Additional Comments: I love your site. It has been very helpful on a lot of things, but mostly to confirm what I am trying to do. Thanks.

Dave’s Reply:
Thanks for your electrical wiring question David.

How a Wall Outlet and Switch Can Be used to Power a Ceiling Fan

Skill Level: Intermediate to Advanced.
Tools Required: Basic Electricians Pouch Hand Tools and Voltage Tester.
Estimated Time: Depends on the personal level experience and ability to work with tools and access to the wiring.
Precaution: Identify the ceiling fan circuit, turn it OFF and then Tag it with a Note before performing any wiring.
Notice: Installing additional electrical wiring should be done with a permit and inspected.

Wiring From a Wall Outlet and Switch for a Ceiling Fan

  • Yes David, what you have discovered is a typical switched outlet scenario where the two wires going to the light switch are nothing more than power in and power out – no neutral.
  • However a simple wiring modification at the outlet will change this but you it must be modified only if the new function will work for you.

More about Wiring a Ceiling Fan


  • How to Install Ceiling Fans
  • Take the mystery out of ceiling fan wiring. Ceiling Fans are a great way to lower your energy bill and brighten up one of your favorite rooms.



  • This switched outlet wiring diagram shows two scenarios of wiring for a typical half hot outlet that can be used to control a table or floor lamp.

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2 Responses to “Ceiling Fan Wiring From a Wall Outlet”
  1. Frank Grodecour says:

    I am installing a ceiling fan where there is no power, so I have to run the wires across the ceiling, then down to a wall to an outlet for power. I have 4 wires, black, blue, white, and green. How do I connect the wires to the outlet with a dual switch that controls the fan & the light?

    • Dave Rongey says:

      Hi Frank,
      Here is the typical wiring for a ceiling fan that will be powered from a wall outlet:
      The power is spliced at the outlet and extended up to a double switch box.
      The black wire is pig tailed with two leads, one for the black wire for the fan, one for the blue wire for the light.
      The white neutral wires are spliced together.
      The ground wires are spliced together, and pigtails are used to bond to the switches and to the switch box.
      The wiring leading up to the ceiling fan from the switch box will be the two wires for the fan and light, the neutral wire, and the ground wire.
      The size and type of the wires must match the wires found at the wall outlet.
      The method used to install surface wiring from the outlet to the ceiling fan must be code approved, such as a surface mount wire mold conduit.
      Wiring that is installed in the attic area and down inside the wall must be done using approved cable, and or as used for the outlet circuit wiring, and the installation must be using wiring methods according to code, such as securing the cable in the attic.
      The ceiling fan box must be rated and approved for the ceiling fan and securely mounted.
      A permit and inspection is advised.
      More detailed instructions are located in the area of this website specifically about installing ceiling fans.

      I hope this helps.


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