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Update Your Ceiling Fan with Paint
I’m back, but only for a minute  because I’m working hard on transforming our pinky-beige bonus room into an art and craft studio fit for an art show! This is compounded by the fact that the room has many angles and dormers. Who knew that such a small room would take FOREVER to paint! Gah.

Do you have a brass ceiling fan cluttering the view on your ceiling? It is hard to imagine getting rid of a perfectly good ceiling fan. Especially if you live in a hot climate like we do. Ceiling fans are our salvation in the heat of the summer. But, they aren’t always the most attractive things.

Update Your Ceiling Fan with Paint

I encourage you not to rid your home of a perfectly good fan if it still works. Instead, why not paint it? AND, even if your blades are white, I’m going to show you a trick that will help make that fan almost disappear on the ceiling. 😉

Update Your Ceiling Fan with Paint

Update Your Ceiling Fan with Paint Materials:

(I’ve included affiliate links for your convenience. I earn a small percentage from a purchase using these links. There is no additional cost to you. You can read more about affiliate links here.)



Start by unscrewing the fan blades from the fan motor. Use a cordless drill for speed or just a phillips head screwdriver.

Update Your Ceiling Fan with Paint

Remove the brass cover from the bottom of the fan. (My fan has a bolt on top of the motor and the screw head underneath.) Obviously if the entire fan is brass, you’ll need to shut off the power and take the entire fan down.

Update Your Ceiling Fan with Paint

Update Your Ceiling Fan with Paint

Set all the screws aside in a bowl (and out of the way of wrestling boys! Ahem.)

Update Your Ceiling Fan with Paint

Unscrew the three screws holding the arm to each fan blade. Store the screws in the bowl with the others.

Update Your Ceiling Fan with Paint

Remove the dust screen from the bottom plate (if your fan has one.) Wipe it clean and set it aside.

Update Your Ceiling Fan with Paint

Clean the fan blades, arms, and the brass bottom cover well with a damp rag and some multi-purpose spray cleaner if necessary.

Update Your Ceiling Fan with Paint

Take the metal arms and the bottom plate outside to spray paint. Lay them on a tarp or drop cloth. Spray one to two coats of KILZ primer onto the fan parts.

Let the primer dry. Then follow up with Rustoleum white spray paint. (Side note: I spritz a little Rustoleum Heirloom white onto the bottom cover to help it match the rest of the fan which was a slight off-white color.)

Update Your Ceiling Fan with Paint

Take your ceiling paint and roll it onto one side of the fan blades. Let the paint dry. Gently sand the blade to remove any burrs or bumps. Add a second coat of paint.

Update Your Ceiling Fan with Paint

After all the fan parts have dried. Reassemble your fan. Start by putting the dust screen back into the fan cover.

Update Your Ceiling Fan with Paint

Then re-attach the bottom cover of the fan motor. (This proved to be the most difficult part of the entire project. Lining up the bolts with the hole on top took some patience.)

Update Your Ceiling Fan with Paint

Reassemble your ceiling fan blades and then attach the arms to the fan with the freshly painted fan blades facing the floor.

Update Your Ceiling Fan with Paint

That looks much better, don’t you think?

Update Your Ceiling Fan with Paint

Having your ceiling and fan blades painted the same flat white color helps the blades blend into the ceiling and almost disappear.

Update Your Ceiling Fan with Paint

It also helps that I painted the ceiling the same white as the fan blades. I am not going to miss that flesh colored ceiling (and walls.)

Update Your Ceiling Fan with Paint
The best part is that I didn’t have to buy a new fan, spend time installing it and worry about the old fan ending up in the landfill!

And now, it’s back to work for me. See ya’ later gator.

Update Your Ceiling Fan with Paint


38 replies
  1. seansmom
    seansmom says:

    GREAT idea! We have tall ceilings and our fans are a must for proper air circulation, but their brass finish is beginning to look a bit outdated. Think I’ll give your idea a try!!!

    • Jackie Rogers
      Jackie Rogers says:

      Well Nelly, I like your idea of different colored blades for the kids room . Even one can do it for his bedroom as well to match the most prominent colors of the room.

  2. Su@TheIntentionalHome
    [email protected] says:

    Just pinned this. I have been wanting to do this for a while. Well, I was waiting for my hubby to do it. But you may have just motivated me to do it myself 🙂 I’ll let you know if I do. . . now that all the kids are in school, I just might. I’m a little scared though.. tools, me on a ladder. Oh me.

  3. Christine
    Christine says:

    Exactly! I have done this for every ceiling fan in our 1960’s brick rancher. Ceiling fans are a necessity in our home (we rarely use air conditioning, as we prefer to have the windows open). We purchased our home from my husband’s paternal grandparents and even the extended family thought that we had brand new ceiling fans, and not the original 1980 shiny brass. I love this!

  4. AnnW
    AnnW says:

    geez, you are good! You could write a manual on how to get to the moon, and I think I could do it. Now, could you please show us how to use that original Dremel tool? The one with all the little heads and pieces? I went to college for 7 years. I can make pills, suppositories, animal medications and even penile injectable solutions, but I can’t figure out a collet and where to put it. Ann PS. Can’t wait until your picks are on Joss & Main.

  5. Laura
    Laura says:

    You’re my hero. I’ve been seeing painted fans and wondering how people didn’t screw them all. the way. UP. I know I would. It never occurred to me that they came this far apart! YAY!!

  6. Aundrea
    Aundrea says:

    I have been begging my hubby to let me do this to all the fans in our house. They are the not-so-lovely brown and brass ones. Maybe if I show him how easy you make it look he will let me. One thing I would love to see you do is adding a light kit onto a ceiling fan. ALL of the rooms in our home have fans without lights and plugs on switches so we have to have lamps all over the place…and it is still not bright enough. Our ReStore has the light kits for CHEAP so I could paint them and add the light at the same time!

  7. Laura
    Laura says:

    Glad to see someone else embracing the ceiling fan…as much as I’d like to do away with them, we can’t live without the ventilation in the summer.
    But…we also did get rid of the brass fixtures that came with the house!

  8. Alana
    Alana says:

    Old, new, brass or blue… remember that there are so many different paints and finishes available and Pretty Handy Girl has just shown us how to pull apart a basic ceiling fan to customize it in our very own way. Choose any finish appropriate for metal and your brass can be pewter, and your white wood blades could even be covered in wallpaper or fabric. Your imagination is your only limitation. And I’m sure if you have children, they would love to have a say in the creation of their own personal fan for their room. I can just imagine a fan for a little girl’s room where the interior of the blades is a gingham fabric and the blade surround is painted white. Remember the fan blades that used to have the wicker in the centers?

  9. Annette
    Annette says:

    Thank you for being real with us. I appreciate that I have visited your site twice and both times I have been blessed with straight forward answers, a list of items needed for the task, and step-by-step instructions. Of course your before and after photos qualify you for the DIYS Pulitzer!

    Your focus is on providing others the best information on how to accomplish their task/goal at hand and guiding them how to do it the very best way possible. This site is officially awarded by this North Carolina user as the most USER FRIENDLY DIYS site and in my heart and mind I am gently throwing pink roses your way! Sincerely,
    Your North Carolina Fan Club President

  10. Dospel
    Dospel says:

    Nice work, great idea. Now you almost can’t see your ceiling fan. And you can do it the other way around, to make fan look in contrast to the ceiling.

  11. Ann
    Ann says:

    Would love to paint my bright brass (mid 90’s) ceiling fan. But it’s really up high and it has a 4-foot long brass stem that extends down from the ceiling. No idea how I’d be able to spray paint that, and I think it would look odd to leave it shiny brass.

    • Janet
      Janet says:

      Just buy a small of enamel and a fine brush and brush paint the rod. The paint will level nicely but will take a day to dry.. If you are good with a spray can, take a2’x1′ piece of cardboard and crease it lengthwise so you can use it as a backdrop to the downrod . Then you can spray paint without getting it everywhere

  12. emma
    emma says:

    this was really helpful because I am planning to paint my ceiling fan in the near future. My ceiling fan happens to be the same as yours. ( which means when the time comes for me to paint my fan it should be easy to follow your steps ) However, my ceiling fan was here when we moved into our house and is already completely white and looks exactly the way yours did once you painted it. All the little fixtures and detailing are exactly the same. Thank you for this, it was extremely helpful!

  13. Sharon
    Sharon says:

    Oh my, so happy I checked this link, it gave me courage! Our home has all bright gold finished fans and I have wanted to do just this process. They are Regency fans, we had them in prior home, they are very quiet and sturdy, but were an investment so not something we would just replace. We decided to paint great room that has 11 ft ceiling and a neighbor offered use of his portable scaffolding so we could do the job ourselves. That opened the subject of refinishing the fan which my husband thought was crazy! Asked him to let me try one, if it failed then we’d replace it and shame on We took the fan down today, without any mishaps and only because of that platform! Bought Rustoleum Paint plus Primer in metallic silver, cleaned the fan casing with rubbing alcohol, scuffed finishes with block sanding sponge and tested couple smaller parts first. They look awesome! So, I’m hooked and the rest of fixtures will be done too. Be brave, try it, paint cost $8.99, fan costs much more and it’s a great improvement! Yay.

  14. Leo
    Leo says:

    I just painted the metal on my ceiling fan, which is just like yours to silver. It came out perfect. Thanks!! I was going to replace the whole fan, because everything in my home is silver. You saved me some money!! It was easy.

  15. Stephanie
    Stephanie says:

    The top of my fan is not white like yours so I will have to paint that as well. That is the part that I am most worried about. Do you have any suggestions for that? I’m worried that if I spray paint that part it will ruin the fan/motor. Other then that this was the past tutorial I found on spray painting ceiling fans.


  16. Agatha
    Agatha says:

    Our fans and we have one in every bedroom have the five light attached on them the glass cups are kind of curvy and the center glass has grooves. This are pretty expensive to replace there are 4 of the smaller and the large center one we have 6 fans Oh I forgot to mention The light fixture used to hold the lights is shiney gold and they have a curvy tube type piece that goes down to where the bulbs are. The pull chain is gold. The blades are white, We installed these 23 years ago. Do you think the method you describe will work for our fans with light kits? Im thinking of leaving the glass light enclosures and not replace them.hoping they will blend in.


Trackbacks & Pingbacks

  1. […] If you really want to give your ceiling fan a new look, here’s how to paint your ceiling fan! […]

  2. […] ficar supimpa em ventilador de teto. Achei um DIY pra você aprender a pintar pás de ventilador nesse divertido blog aqui. Divirta-se e […]

  3. […] I do love a simple upgrade with fresh white paint. […]

  4. […] had been working on our bonus room, as hinted at in my post about painting the ceiling fan to blend into the ceiling. But, my plans for the bonus room have been stalled until I can get back in the […]

  5. […] replace it, instead paint your fan so it blends with the ceiling!  Via Pretty Handy […]

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