How to Oil a Ceiling Fan without Taking it Down (2023 – 2024)? An Easy Guide

Adding a ceiling fan to your room can enhance its aesthetic appeal, as well as be an excellent energy-saving accessory. However, no one can argue with the fact that a noisy ceiling fan is a nuisance.

You might be able to get rid of the noise by oiling it. However, it can be tedious and time-consuming to disassemble the whole fan for maintenance every few months.

This step-by-step guide will explain how to oil a ceiling fan without taking it down.

Do Ceiling Fans Need to Be Oiled?

You might wonder if you need to lubricate your fan in the first place, even though lubricating it without taking it down is relatively easy. A ceiling fan requires adequate lubrication, just as any other machine that produces a squeaking noise as a result of excessive friction.

The self-lubricating ball bearings on the modern maintenance-free fan models will allow you to avoid oiling your fans.

You probably don’t have sealed ball bearings in your fan if it was manufactured before 1970 as constant friction can wear the bearings down and cause the fan to perform inefficiently.

Smooth and effortless movement can be restored by regularly lubricating the ball bearings.

You may also need to oil some self-lubricating ceiling fans, especially if their ball bearings are on the verge of failure, or if they are operating in dusty, dirty environments.

Make sure you check your manual for specific information on whether your particular model needs to be oiled.

Best Ceiling Fan Oils

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3-IN-ONE 100355 Multi-Purpose Oil

  • Lubricates, Cleans and Protects against Rust and Corrosion
  • Fans, Wheels, Bicycles etc.
  • Power tools, Motors, Doors
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Supco M098 G84-620 Zoom Spout, Multi Purpose Precision Oiler

  • All-Purpose Lubricating Oil
  • Fans, Sewing Machine, Blower Motor
  • Easy to Use
Best Overall
Ceiling Fan Oil 8 Oz Universal Fan Lubricant

  • Keep Them Smoothly
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Every product was carefully curated by an Esquire editor. We may earn a commission from these links.

What Type of Oil Can You Use to Oil a Ceiling Fan?

Most people mistakenly go with any type of oil they can get their hands on to oil their ceiling fans, which can tamper with their motors.

It is important to use only non-detergent electric motor oil for lubricating your fan. Otherwise, the regular engine oil will not work. Therefore, you should always use non-detergent motor oil for lubricating your fan.

For regular lubrication, check your fan’s user manual or look for a non-detergent motor oil online if you cannot find one at your local convenience store.

Related Guide: How do I know when my Treadmill needs lubricants ? Easy Steps to Follow

Things You Will Need to Lubricate a Ceiling Fan

Using the equipment you have at home, you can easily lubricate your ceiling fan once you have purchased the right motor oil. The open-end wrench will be necessary if you want to take your fan apart and oil its motor completely.

You don’t need any special tools to oil a ceiling fan without taking it down. Just clean your fan’s oil hole and surface with a damp cloth and apply your favorite non-detergent electric oil.

You’ll also need a ladder to reach the ceiling fan and a long thin tool to check the oil level.

Steps on How to Oil a Ceiling Fan Without Taking It Down

The increased friction can cause your ceiling fan’s internal system to jam if you don’t oil it frequently, accelerating the fan’s gradual degeneration. Now that you know what kind of oil and equipment you’ll need, just follow these steps to get it done.

The User’s Guide should be read

Various ceiling fans come with different instructions and requirements. Before getting started, make sure you follow any specific instructions regarding oiling your ceiling fans.

Make sure the electrical outlet is turned off

To prevent any safety hazards, you should turn off the main power switch before performing maintenance on your fan.

Make use of a ladder

Before you climb up the ladder to oil the fan, make sure that you place it on a flat surface so your ladder will be stable.

Search for the oil hole

Most ceiling fans have oil holes, so you can lubricate them without taking them apart. They are usually located on the top half of the engine and are marked as well. If you don’t find one, your fan probably does its own lubrication.

Analyze the oil level

Using any thin, long, pipe-like tool, insert the tool into the oil hole and observe how much oil is in it. If the tool is almost dry, add oil to it.

Oil Hole Cleaning

Cleaning the oil hole with a damp cloth and detergent first can prevent dirt and dust from clogging the oil hole after checking the oil level.

Likewise, clean your fan’s exterior and oil hole regularly to ensure that no dust or dirt accumulates in its engine parts. This will ensure a smooth operation without any squeaking.

Spritz the oil into the Oil hole

Once your fan and oil hole are clean, fill them with oil to the recommended level. This will reduce friction in engine parts and restore smooth operation to your fan.

You need to use your small pipe as a navigator when pouring the oil into a significantly small hole. Use the small pipe as a guide and slowly pour the oil until the hole is full.

The amount of oil you need will depend on when you last oiled your fan. You can even dab your finger into the oil hole to gradually fill it with oil without making a mess.

Fan Check

When you are done oiling your fan, remove any excess oil from its surface without dismantling it. After a few minutes, turn the fan on to make sure it is running correctly.


1. What kind of oil I can use for the fan?

There is no need for oil-sealed bearings in most ceiling fans. It’s common for fan bearings to be oiled with straight 30-weight motor oil if you don’t have the manufacturer’s recommendation.

2. Can I use cooking oil for the ceiling fan?

It is not uncommon for cooking oil to “gum up” after a while, causing the fans to cease to spin. The better option is machine oil, but even then dust can get trapped and cause friction. If you have a noisy fan, you should simply replace it.

3. Can I use olive oil for my fan?

In the short term, it will work. Your fan will end up full of goop, especially when the olive oil gets sticky. In other words, it will be fine for a few weeks.

4. Can I use coconut oil to lubricate the fan?

The use of coconut oil in your motor can cause a lot of problems. It can get heated with the motor and seep into the windings, causing motor malfunctions and in the worst case, can also cause a fire.

5. How do you oil a squeaky ceiling fan?

Check the top portion of the motor for an oil hole using a ladder, chair, or table that is securely attached. Using a light machine oil, add up to six drops to the hole to lubricate the motor.

6. Can you oil a ceiling fan without taking it apart?

Ceiling fans should only be removed if absolutely necessary. While attached to the ceiling, many models can be oiled. It may be necessary to remove the fan from the ceiling if you cannot access the oil hole. A sealed bearing fan, however, requires this maintenance.

7. How often should ceiling fans be oiled?

The oiling of ceiling fans is required by many brands from time to time. Hunter fans require oil only once every five to ten years, on the Classic Original. Please check the manufacturer’s instructions and guidance before following this general guide for other ceiling fans.

8. Which oil is best for ceiling fans?

Especially formulated for ceiling fans, box fans, table fans, and portable fans, 100%-synthetic oil will keep indoor or outdoor fans running smoothly and quieter.


Taking your ceiling fan down and oiling it isn’t as difficult as you think. In order to conduct your task properly, you should always consult your fan’s user manual. In this way, you’ll know if your fan has any specific maintenance requirements.

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