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You want to install a ceiling fan in a room that’s not wired for controlling both a fan and a light.  Sure, you can operate the fan with the pull chains, assuming you can even reach them, but then you have to get up off your duff.  This RF remote control from Hunter has solved this problem for me and will hopefully help you, too.

The receiver mounts in the base of the ceiling fan.  You just wire the receiver to the switch wires and then wire the fan and light into the receiver module.  The receiver is a little large for some fans so you may have to really stuff the wires and receiver into the base to get it to fit. When you put the trim piece back up remember to leave the antenna dangling out for the best reception.

The remote and unit have four dip switches that set the operating frequency, which is helpful if you want to use a couple of these in the house, or if your fan and light keep turning on mysteriously due to some source of interference.

You can set the ceiling fan to three different speeds or turn it off with the remote. Dimming the light works counter to how you’d expect:  You hold the light button when the light is fully on, and the light will start to dim after a few seconds, then you let go of the switch when the light reaches the level you want.

The remote also comes with a holder that mounts to the switch plate.  The plate doesn’t cover up the switch, so if you lose the remote you can still operate the light with the wall switch.  When the remote is hanging on the holder it protrudes from the wall a few inches so it’s easy to knock off the wall, but it can take a bit of abuse — we’ve dropped ours on the hardwood floor about 100 times.  When that happens sometimes the battery cover pops off the back, but then we just pop it back on and the remote is fine.

Pricing for Hunter’s fan remote control starts around $40.

Fan Remote [Hunter]
Street Pricing [Google]
Via Amazon [What’s This?]

 

10 Responses to Control The Ceiling Fan From Your Easy Chair

  1. Josh says:

    Most of the fans have these built in and there are several brands out there of these remote. They are nice to have, but unfortunatly you can kiss using CFL’s good bye since there are not any dimmable CFL’s for electronically controlled dimmers also with fans today using weird size bulbs it’s even more frustrating.

  2. Mike Yancey says:

    Yup, no CFLs.

    One other factor – I have several of these in the house. When power is restored after an outage, the fan-lights come on.

    We have occasional power failures. It’s not unusual to wake up in the middle of then night and all the fan lights are on.

    That said, it’s great to pop into a room and use the control instead of reaching your hand up under the spinning blades.

    Mike Y
    Dallas, Texas

  3. Jason says:

    There are wall control versions of this type of remote system that can be added to just about any ceiling fan. The wall switch works under the same principles as the hand held, it even uses the same receiver. This allows you to install a wall switch without additional wiring (some are battery powered).

    The new light bulbs and other issues you are seeing with ceiling fans is a result of the “Environmental Protection Act of 2005”

    EPACT2005 has really done a number on ceiling fans, forcing lighting restrictions on the industry. The next phase is a “Limiter” that is now required on any ceiling fans entering the country after 1/1/9. This makes your ceiling fan light turn itself off when the light consumption is 190 watts or more.

  4. Zathrus says:

    Do yourself a favor and return any Hunter remotes you get to the store. Then go to Home Depot and pick up the Hampton Breeze version. Same cost, same features, but the Hampton Breeze version doesn’t automatically turn the light onto full brightness when there’s a tenth of a second power outage.

    I put ceiling fans and remotes into our kids rooms when we moved in. The one Hunter remote got ripped out quickly after discovering this “feature” (and it is documented in their manual, but not on the package).

    I can’t imagine what they were thinking. The Hampton Bay version keeps the same fan and light settings when you power it back on.

  5. @Mike Yancey and Zathrus:

    You know, I guess I never noticed the light coming on after a power outage (and never read the manual either), but it makes sense, because if you turn off the light at the switch and then turn it back on after about 10 seconds, the light will come on. I actually use this feature quite often. Sometimes the last person to use the remote didn’t put it back on the wall and I don’t want to grope around in the dark to find it so I use the light switch.

    I guess some people’s bugs are other peoples features.

    ——

    On dimmable CFL:

    I keep reading from all these different sources that you can buy dimmable CFL’s at the store. I’ve seen expensive ones online, but I’ve yet to find a local store that carry any.

  6. Chris says:

    Benjamen: Lowe’s and Home Depot both stock them, at least in Michigan. I think Menard’s does, too, though their selection isn’t great.

    Most of the dimmable CFLs I’ve seen were floodlights. I don’t think I’ve seen any “normal” dimmable CFL bulbs yet.

    cl

  7. Michael says:

    Walmart has a dimmable CFL–2 or 3 times the price of their regular CFLs but, hey…it dims. Look closely because they are almost hidden, but they are there.

    As for me, I did manage to squeeze 2 CFL bulbs into our ceiling fan light–they touch(ok rub up against) the globe but have worked just fine for the last year. The power consumption is low enough that I don’t care that they don’t dim.

  8. Toolaremia says:

    Hey folks, I have one of these on the ceiling fan in my office, and NON-DIMMABLE CFLs WORK JUST FINE! Of course, you can’t dim them, but they work fine at full-brightness.

    I went this route because the fan is “pretty” and can only use three 25 Watt candelabra bulbs in the lamp. Not bright enough. So I finally found candelabra-base CFLs that puts out 60 Watt equivalent. Two of those and I have 120 Watt-equivalent for 25 Watts of power with very little heat and still controlled by the wireless remote.

    As for the automatic light on feature, it’s so you can turn the lights on at the main switch without the remote when you lose the fool thing. Better than searching for it in the dark!

  9. Jason says:

    Another solution to the remote being lost (or across the room) is to install a wall switch that works just like the hand held unit. Minka Aire offers a wall switch (WC210) that gives you full function from the wall and only needs one hot lead.

    I know the WC210 works with Hampton Bay(Home Depot’s house brand), Harbor Breeze(Lowe’s house brand), Emerson, Minka Aire and many others. These brands all use a variation of receiver Model # UC7067RC

    I don’t think it will work with the Hunter system based on the comments about the light coming on after the power is turned on. Ceiling fans with the UC7067RC receiver will come back on to whatever the last setting from the remote was.

  10. Zathrus says:

    The reason I absolutely hated the auto-on of the Hampton remote is because it was installed in our kid’s room. So a middle of the night power flicker and suddenly you have a 1 1/2 year old waking up and screaming about the exceptionally bright room.

    If it could’ve been disabled by a dip switch then I would agree that it was a feature.

    Oh, and she’s 3 now, turns the light/fan on and off herself, and hasn’t lost the remote yet.

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