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How Do I Rewind Fan Motors?

Rewinding the motor of your fan can extend its years of use.
rotating ceiling fan image by Yali Shi from Fotolia.com

After a many years of use, the motor of your fan may need to be rewound. This occurs when the motor overheats and burns or melts the coating of the windings. This can cause the windings to short out. Rewinding a motor is an intricate exercise. It is not for the faint of heart and should be supervised by an expert because if it is done improperly, the fan will no longer function. If you are an adventurous home-technician, rewinding the motor of your fan is like dismantling a difficult puzzle and then putting it back together. Enjoy the process.

Using a screwdriver remove the screws that fasten the case in place. This case holds the motor. Use the pen to write notes and detail the current motor configuration. It is easier to take digital photos of each area of the motor so that you have a visual log to reference while working on this project. If possible, videotape your interaction with the motor so that you have it as a guide.

Remove the wires from the motor, which are held in place by the tabs. To do this, gently bend the tabs and slide the ends of the wires out using a screwdriver. There may be one wire or multiple wires. It depends on the winding pattern and the motor.

Cut the coils at the top of the armature. Count the number of winds in each coil and write this number on a piece of paper for future reference. The winds per coil are important as they relate to the spin pattern of the motor.

Using magnet wire with the same gauge, rewind the armature. Ensure that you are creating the same winding pattern and number of coils of each wire. Leave the end of the first wire long enough to touch the tabs. When each wire has been wound, clip it down using a clothesline clip, and continue to create the other windings.

Use a sharp knife to cut the insulation on the wires that will sit on the tabs. You need to ensure the wire makes contact with the tab. When you are finished, insert the ends of the wires back into the tabs. The first and last wires can share the same tab. Make sure the wires do not touch each other. Put the case over the motor and screw back into place. Test your fan.

Things You'll Need:

  • Screwdriver
  • Digital camera or video camera
  • Paper
  • Pen
  • Wire cutters
  • Magnet wire
  • Clothesline clip


  • Rewinding a motor is an extremely difficult operation that should be guided by an experienced technician. If it is done improperly, the fan will not function in the future.
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