Pedestal Fan Stopped Working? Follow These 7 Steps

Pedestal Fan Stopped Working

It doesn’t matter if you use it to supplement your air conditioning or if it’s your primary cooling method, if you’re pedestal fan stopped working you probably want to get it fixed again as soon as possible.

The following will take you through several steps to troubleshoot, diagnose, and fix your fan.

If your pedestal fan has stopped working, make sure your breaker hasn’t tripped or a fuse has blown. Next, make sure that the fan’s cord isn’t damaged. Test the outlet with another appliance for electricity and finally, if you smell burning, it may be the fan’s motor.

Keep reading, and I’ll walk you through several steps to troubleshoot your fan.

What You (May) Need to Fix Your Fan

Depending on what’s wrong with your fan there are a few items you may need to have on hand.

  • New fuse
  • New cord
  • New power outlet
  • WD-40

How to Fix Your Fan

Follow these steps to see if you can get your fan working again.

Pedestal Fun Beside a Bed
There’s a good chance that you will be able to fix your pedestal fan by yourself. Keep reading!

Step 1. Make Sure It’s Plugged in

We’ve all probably had that duh moment when we’ve realized something that wasn’t working wasn’t plugged in. So check to make sure your fan is plugged in first.

Step 2. Check Your Circuit Breaker

If your fan is plugged in, make sure that the outlet is receiving electricity. Check your breaker panel and make sure that none of the breakers have tripped. If your panel isn’t labeled, you’ll need to test each switch and reset anything that may be tripped.

It’s also a good idea to investigate why a breaker has tripped. Make sure you’re not overloading the circuit or if there are any loose wires in the fan’s cord that may be causing a short.

Step 3. Confirm That the Outlet Is Receiving Power

If the above steps haven’t resolved your problem make sure the outlet is working by plugging in a receptacle tester. if you don’t have a tester, you can use another small portable appliance. If it powers up without issue, the outlet is clearly working. If it doesn’t, then you have an electrical problem.

Step 4. Check the Fan Fuse

Many larger fans will have a thermal fuse. This uses a safety device used to prevent cheaper fan motors from catching fire. Depending on the fan, the fuse can be replaced.

Step 5. Replace Damaged Cords

Examine the entire length of the cord to make sure it isn’t damaged and that the connections to the fan and the plug aren’t loose. Is the plug frayed, or has a pet has chewed on it? Check the prongs to make sure they’re not bent.

If you identify any problems with the cord and you don’t want to buy a whole new fan, it’s fairly easy to replace the cord itself. Simply purchase a new cord that has the same type of plug and wire gauge and then follow the steps in this video tutorial or check out this print tutorial.

Step 6. Clean Your Fan

Over time, fan blades build up a significant amount of dirt and debris. If left, it can impact the performance of your fan. Dust on the grill around the blades can also build up and impede airflow.

Unplug the fan and then use a vacuum cleaner or compressed air to remove all debris. Clean the grill and then remove it and clean the blades.

When cleaning the blades make sure to pay attention to the spot where the blades connect to the motor and rear bearing. If grime is difficult to remove try using a mild detergent.

Check out this video on how to clean all the parts of your fan.

Step 7. Grease The Motor

If you turn your fan on and you can hear the motor running but the blades aren’t turning, then the gears may be stuck.

Make sure you’ve thoroughly cleaned the fan—I recommend using the deep clean method in the video above—remove the screw the motor housing. Once done, use a lightweight oil such as WD-40 to lubricate the gears.

While you’re spraying the lubricant make sure you turn the blades with your hand so that it spreads around evenly.

Most fans will have a plastic vent that allows heat to escape from the motor. You’ll need to unscrew these and remove the vent. Once you have access to the central pin and bearings, see if you can turn the pin with your hand. If it sticks or resists it needs to be lubricated.

Over time the original lubrication on the pin wears down with each rotation of the blades. Stuck pins are one of the most common issues for any fan that is no longer spinning its blades.

Putting Grease On Motor Fan
Old and dirty oil won’t lubricate the moving parts as well as new.

Spray your lubricant onto the front and back of the pin, making sure you use enough oil to completely coat the pin without getting any on the motor itself.


If your pedestal fan is no longer running, there’s a very good chance that there is a simple, inexpensive fix.

To recap, here are the most common things to check for:

  • Make sure it’s plugged in
  • Check your circuit breaker
  • Make sure your outlet is working properly
  • Confirm that the fan’s thermal fuse is working
  • Replace damaged cord
  • Clean your fan
  • Lubricate the motor and bearings

Unless you have an electrical problem with your home’s wiring, any of the above will probably cost you more in time than money to fix.

Thanks for reading. Hopefully, one of the above fixes helps you get your fan running again.

While you’re here, why not check out the related posts below. Perhaps we can help you with something else.

Hi there! I’m Craig, and I’m the founder of Appliance Analysts. When it comes to appliances and anything electrical, I’ve always loved opening things up, figuring out how they work, and fixing them. This website is where I share free advice from myself and our experts to help our readers solve their appliance/HVAC problems and save money. Read more