Installing a Ceiling Fan?

April 24, 2020

Can a ceiling fan rated for 20a be used with a 15a circuit?



Bronze Post Medal for All Time! 140 Posts
April 24, 20200 found this helpful

A 20 amp into a 15 amp is trouble! This is a problem, because this is a over load for a 15 amp. This could short out, spark , then fire. Now if it was reversed (15 amp into a 20 amp) lower into higher. That option works!


Gold Answer Medal for All Time! 617 Answers
April 24, 20200 found this helpful

Do not play around with this sort of thing. The best case scenario, it will short out all the time. Worst case scenario you could be looking at real trouble.


Bronze Post Medal for All Time! 105 Posts
April 25, 20200 found this helpful

First off when doing this you can overload a circuit. This is very bad. Circuits are designed for a certain load and if a 15a circuit has to much on it or is not calculated correctly there will be major issues in the home. The 20a circuits are designed to run an item that pulls more electricity than another item.


Your 15a circuit can't handle this load and should not be done. You need to hook up the fan to the correct circuit in order for it to run correctly.

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2 More Questions

Here are the questions asked by community members. Read on to see the answers provided by the ThriftyFun community.

September 21, 2015

I took over a condo and I am installing ceiling light and fan fixtures in each of the rooms. The wires are present, however they are inactive. There is no power (voltage of ~14V instead of 110V), the wires are cut, never used, not capped.

How do I identify which wires would have to be connected using new breakers (to be installed) at the main panel. The panel has spear sections available, however all the existing wires are already connected and functioning. If the advice is to contract an electrician how do I explain the issue in proper terms?

Thank you in advance for the advice.


Bronze Post Medal for All Time! 105 Posts
October 12, 20170 found this helpful

Here is a few things about electricity and cables:

  • Normally you have 3 wires, positive, negative, and ground. I am not sure what your color combo is on your set of wires.
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  • Do you have a brown, green, white, blue, or black wires in this.
  • One cable has 1 wire encased in a thick black housing or cable housing.
  • If you can trace this cable back to the breaker box and find where it is disconnected that would be excellent.
  • Depending on the age of the condo and how the condo was wired will determine how you will reattach these wires to your existing breakers or to a new breaker.
  • Normally on a fan you will or should have some wires coming out of the top of the fan.
  • There should be 3 of them.
  • These wires should match the wires in the cable housing.
  • Use wire screws or nuts to attach them with.
  • This is a small splicer where you put the wire from you cable in one side and the fan wire in the other side.
  • You will need to screw these down tight and make sure when you insert them they are touching.
  • The screws on both ends holds the wires in place.
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March 10, 2013

My new bathroom fan hasn't worked since I installed it and now all of a sudden it's working.

By Brian S.


Bronze Request Medal for All Time! 64 Requests
March 12, 20130 found this helpful

Forgive me for asking, but what is the problem here? It is working now as far as I can ascertain.

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