6 Reasons Why Your Tower Fan Is Squeaking

A tower fan helps to cool down but are the squeaks worse than the heat? Here’s what you can do to fix a squeaking tower fan.

Common reasons your tower fan is squeaking include lack of lubrication, debris in the blades, a loose or broken belt, worn-out motor bearings, and jammed oscillating parts. Your tower fan may also be making weird noises if the housing or screws are loose.

Keep reading how you can find out which problem you’re having and how to fix it.

6 Common Reasons Your Tower Fan Might Be Squeaking

Tower fans are a great way to keep cool during hot days, but they can also be a source of frustration if they start making strange noises. If your tower fan has started squeaking, there are a few potential reasons.

Here are 8 common causes of squeaky tower fans:

1. The Fan Needs To Be Oiled

One of the most common reasons for a squeaky fan is a lack of lubrication. The motor in your fan contains several moving parts that need adequate lubrication to function correctly.

In addition, these fans have bearings you must lubricate periodically to keep them running smoothly. If the bearings are dry, they can also start to make noise.

If you haven’t lubricated your fan for a while, this is the first thing to do, it’s necessary for maintenance anyways.

To fix a fan that’s making noise due to a lack of lubrication, you’ll need to follow these steps:

  1. Add oil to the motor. There will be oiling holes on the motor. The covers will have to be removed to do this. Use a SAE20 oil for the best results.
  2. Run the fan for a few minutes to see if the noise has stopped. 

Note: You can find specific instructions on oiling your tower fan in the manual that came with the product.

Suggested: How to properly maintain a tower fan

2. The Fan Blades Are Dirty

Another common reason for a squeaky tower fan is dirty blades. Over time, dust and dirt can build up on the blades, causing them to become unbalanced. When the blades are unbalanced, they put unnecessary stress on the motor, leading to a squeaky noise.

Use a flashlight to check inside the fan if there is a lot of dust buildup. Usually it’s necessary to clean a fan every two months with regular use. Click here to find a post that explains the cleaning process in detail.

Alternatively, you can follow this video tutorial to clean your fan:

Pro Tip: You can use a degreaser if the blades are particularly dirty to help break down any stubborn dirt and grime. Make sure to let it dry completely before turning the fan on.

Suggested: Tower fan keeps turning off. 13 Causes and fixes

3. The Fan Belt Is Loose or Broken

Not all tower fans have a belt but if yours does, check if yours has a loose or broken belt, it can cause the fan to make noise. The belt is responsible for turning the blades, so if it’s not working correctly, the blades won’t turn smoothly and cause a squeaking noise.

Locate the belt if there is one and give it a visual inspection. if it’s broken or fraying, that’s a clear giveaway you have to change it. Also check if it’s brittle (lots of small cracks) or slipping (move the blades while holding the fan).

The only way to fix these problems is to replace the belt.

To fix a loose or broken belt, you’ll need to:

  1. Unplug the fan and remove the blade assembly.
  2. Locate the belt and tighten or replace it with a new one. (you’ll need the correct type)
  3. Reassemble the fan and plug it in.
  4. Run the fan to see if the noise has stopped. 

Tip: If you’re not sure how to replace the belt, take it to a local repair shop. They should be able to do it for you.

4. The Motor Bearings Are Worn Out

If your fan makes a squeaking noise, the motor bearings could be worn out. The bearings help the motor run smoothly, so if they’re damaged, it can cause the motor to make noise. Besides, the noise is a sign the motor is about to fail, so it’s best to replace it before it goes bust.

To replace the motor bearings, you’ll need to:

  1. Unplug the fan and remove the blade assembly.
  2. Locate the bearings and remove them.
  3. Install new bearings and reassemble the fan.
  4. Run the fan to see if the noise has stopped.

Or take a look at this in-depth article.

Caution: Ensure the replacement bearings are the same size as those you removed. Otherwise, it could cause further damage to the fan. In many cases, the effort required to get the right bearings and replace them are not

Suggested: How long can a tower fan run continuously?

5. The Oscillation Mechanism Is Jammed

Another potential cause of a squeaky tower fan is a jammed oscillation mechanism. The oscillation mechanism helps the fan rotate, so if it’s clogged or misaligned, it can put unnecessary stress on the motor, causing a squeaky noise. Or it can be the parts of the mechanism itself squeaking under the stress.

To fix a jammed oscillation mechanism, you’ll need to:

  1. Unplug the fan and remove the blade assembly.
  2. Locate the oscillation mechanism and remove any debris blocking it.
  3. Reassemble the fan and plug it in.
  4. Run the fan to see if the noise has stopped. 

6. The Grill or Blade Housing Is Loose

If the grill or blade housing is loose, it can cause the fan to make noise. The grill and blade housing keep the blades in place, so if they’re not tight, the blades can become unbalanced and start to hit the housing. That can (you guessed it) cause a squeaking noise.

This should just be a case of tightening the screws that are loose.

Final Thoughts

If your tower fan is making a squeaking noise, there are several potential causes. The most common is worn-out motor bearings, but a jammed oscillation mechanism or a loose grill or blade housing can also cause the noise. In some cases, the problem may be as simple as a loose screw.

If you can’t identify the source of the squeak, or if it persists after you’ve tried to fix it, take the fan to a repair shop. With proper care, your tower fan should last for many years without any problems.


Matt moved to a location where the climate is hot and humid year round 8 years ago and got a bit obsessed with ceiling fans as an alternative or supplement to air-conditioning. He just wants the optimal ceiling fan and to get it to work the best for the specific situation. And now you can follow what he learned on ceilingfantips.com

Recent Posts