If you have an old ceiling fan that no longer works, you may want to disassemble it to use its parts, preserve the fan paddles or use the decorative electrical or light fixture hardware. You will probably want to take the fan apart before you remove it from the ceiling, since it can be heavy as one unit. Be sure to turn off the electrical circuit breaker to the fixture before you begin.
Remove in Steps
As a rule of thumb, take the fan apart from the bottom up. If the fan has glass globes, decorative light fixtures or light bulbs attached to the bottom of the fan, remove these first because they are heavy items.
Three thumbscrews usually hold globes onto the fan and are easily unscrewed. Lightbulbs in the globes unscrew easily, too.
After you have removed the globes and bulbs, remove the light fixture by unscrewing the top section and the wire nuts.
Fins and Motor
Use a Phillips head screwdriver to remove fins. Consider whether you want to remove the motor since it comes as a unit. If you are not going to reuse the fan in another location, take the fan's motor off by unscrewing the housing and the motor.
Have a partner hold the motor in place to lighten the weight of the fan as you remove the last screw. With help, you will have removed the remaining parts more easily.