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Home > Ceiling Fan Learning Center > Frequently Asked Questions About Ceiling Fans > About Remote and Wall Controls

About Remote / Wall Controls & Receivers

Wired Wall Controls (No Receiver)

There are a few types of wired controls with no receivers. The most common are Single/Dual Slide Controls, or Rotary Knob Controls.

  • A Single Slide control will control ONLY the fan speeds, and requires a two-wire setup (One Hot – Positive, and One Negative/Neutral). The same as an on / off switch.

  • A Dual Slide control will control the fan speeds and light, and requires a three-wire setup (Two Hot – Positives, and One Negative/Neutral).

  • Fan Knob Controls are typically a two-wire setup. Unless they are equipped with a Light Slide Control, or Toggle Light Control. Then the control will require a three-wire setup (Two Hot – Positives, and One Negative/Neutral). Some knob controls come high amperage and can control up to 10 fans (fan speeds ONLY, no light).

Wired/Wireless Wall Controls (Receiver)

Most Wall Controls with Receivers are wired. Wired wall controls require a two-wire setup and speak with the Receiver via Dip Switches. Dip Switches are tiny little switches (typically 4-8 switches with on/off abilities) within the Wall Control and often on the Receiver (unless the Receiver is a Learn-Receiver, where the Wall Control must be programmed or ‘burned’ into the receiver to speak with each other). The Dip Switches on the Receiver and the Wall Control must match each other in order for the fan to function. Wireless wall controls work in the exact same fashion, but require a tiny battery to operate. (Typically a 12 Volt A23 Battery, commonly found in local stores / hardware stores.)

Remote Control w/ Receiver

Most Remote Controls with Receivers speak via Dip Switches. Dip Switches are tiny little switches (typically 4-8 switches with on/off abilities) within the Remote Control and often on the Receiver (unless the Receiver is a Learn-Receiver, where the Remote Control must be programmed or ‘burned’ into the receiver to speak with each other). The Dip Switches on the Receiver and the Remote Control must match each other in order for the fan to function. Most remotes require a tiny battery to operate. (Typically a 12 Volt A23 Battery, 9 Volt Battery, or Two / Four AAA Batteries. Commonly found in local stores / hardware stores.)

Receivers

Most controls that speak to receivers function via Dip Switches (explained previously). Though, on the other hand, some Receivers are learn-receivers and require a specific command from the Remote / Wall Control to function. Every manufacturer has a different set of commands required for the receiver to listen. These commands will be explained further under the individual manufacturer F.A.Q.

Controls in conjunction with CFL Bulbs

Most controls come with a dimming function capability. While most light fixtures are transitioning or come with CFL (Compact Fluorescent Bulbs) these however do not having the dimming function capability and in conjunction with the controls that do may not work properly or have a slight hum noise, to the extent of burning out the receiver / computer board.

View All Ceiling Fan Remote Controls by Manufacturer Here


Common Questions

  • My remote control is not working correctly, what should I do?
    Please check the following possible reasons & solutions: Check your batteries to see if they need to be replaced. Check the indicator light on the transmitter. Check the dip switches in both the remote and the receiver (if non-learn receiver) to make sure both are in the same position. If the switches are in the correct position and the remote is not functioning, the alternative cause could be the receiver in the fan. Check the wall switch by flipping it on and off, then retry.
  • I have a remote control fan and it turns on and off on its own. What could be wrong?
    The remote controls are designed to use radio frequency to control the fan and lights. The cause of your remote turning on and off on its own may be because it is picking up another radio frequency. They are designed to pick up any range up to 40ft. If you have multiple fans in your home using different remotes, you will need to change the individual remotes to different frequencies.
  • I have an older fan with a discontinued control system, and it is not working, what do I do?
    Most fans with older control systems that have been discontinued (parts, receivers, controls, etc.) need to be updated to a more current control system. If the fan has no separate receiver and the receiver is built into the fan, it is likely that it needs to be updated as well. For any further questions on upgrading to a new control system please call 1-877-724-2326.
  • Can my fan be reversed via Wall Control or Remote Control?
    Universal Control Systems do not include the reverse function. If your fan has a reverse switch on the motor housing then that is the only way to reverse the fan, via the switch. Otherwise, unless stated on the available control that’s included or the upgrades, the fan cannot be reversed via wall or remote control.
  • Can I use a remote control to control multiple fans?
    While it is possible to have a remote control multiple fans, it is not recommended. The frequencies can get blocked off and ideally un-sync the fans. For example - both fans are on high speed and you’re not close enough to both so one will stay on high speed and the other will change to the new speed pressed. Thus it is recommended to have one control unit per fan.
  • Can I use a wall control to control multiple fans?
    While there are many types of wall controls that control multiple ceiling fans. There are however, no wall controls that will control multiple ceiling fans with lights. If you have any questions on controlling multiple fans please call 1-877-724-2326 to speak with one of our ceiling fan specialists.
  • Can my wall/remote control dim my CFL bulbs?
    Currently, we do not sell any type of CFL light fixture that is equipped with the dimming ability. If purchasing a control and you may be looking to switch to CFL bulbs, or vice versa then call 1-877-724-2326 to speak with a ceiling fan specialist and see which controls are available for CFL, Halogen, and Candelabra based type bulbs.

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