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A dirty bathroom fan and grille

Bathroom Fan Motor Replacement

Dear Mr. Electrician: What is needed for a bathroom fan motor replacement?  The exhaust fan in my bathroom stopped working after making noise for several weeks.  Does the entire bathroom fan housing need to be replaced? Answer: A successful bathroom fan motor replacement begins with having the correct replacement parts.  In many cases a residential bathroom fan motor can be easily replaced. Quite a few bathroom fans were manufactured for a simple and fast installation by the original installer.  Consequently the parts replacement can be almost as simple.  NOTE: Some text links below go to applicable products on Ebay, Amazon, or to my book. The fan motor above is held in place with two screws supporting the bracket (Note the pear shaped slots). The electricity is connected with a plug.  The housing is already grounded from the power supply, so when the motor gets mounted securely, ground continuity is maintained. BATHROOM FAN MOTOR REPLACEMENT The key to a successful bathroom fan motor replacement is getting the correct replacement parts.  Many bath fan replacement parts are available, but identifying the correct parts can be a chore. When your bathroom fan was manufactured, a model number was labeled inside of the housing or on the fan motor support bracket.  Not the number on the motor itself, though that number is sometimes helpful and worth writing down.  The fan model number may be stamped into the metal or there may be a label glued inside somewhere. Before working on the fan, put a drop cloth down and wear a face mask and eye protection.  Old bathroom fans sometimes have an abundance of dust and dander inside.  Use a ladder when reaching up for the fan.  Read my post about safety precautions. Amazon Sells Bathroom Fan Replacement Motors When replacing the motor, always replace the fan blade.  Don't try to use the old fan blade with a new motor.   It is difficult to remove the old fan blades and they can get damaged.  Sometimes the bath fan motor replacement is sold as a kit with bracket, motor, and fan blade. For those of you with a Nutone 696N B Unit bathroom exhaust fan, the factory has a replacement kit available.  The Nutone C350BN is a motor, fan blade, and bracket all ready to be snapped into place. Some Nutone and Broan model bathroom fans that were originally installed by the builder of your home have a retrofit bath fan upgrade kit available to change out the motor, fan blade, and grill while the existing fan housing remains in place.  This is the easiest thing to do, and the manufacturer claims an improvement in noise and air movement.  The kit is sometimes cheaper than buying the replacement parts.  The bath fan upgrade kit is a Nutone 690NT and can be used to replace motors and upgrade several models of Broan and Nutone fans, but not all.  Note that Broan has an identical upgrade kit with the part number 690 and a different color box.  Nutone and Broan are the same company.  They merged together many years...