Home Improvement

Why is My Bathroom Extractor Fan Not Working?

The bathroom is, by default, a damp and humid place. All bathrooms require a source of ventilation, which could either be a bathroom extractor fan or a window. If you don’t ventilate, you’re leaving your bathroom at the mercy of mould and mildew, and this brings a whole new set of problems. 

Table of Contents:

In this article, the Fantastic Services team will explain why your extractor fan is not working and how to fix the issue: 

So, if you:

  • Own a bathroom extractor fan;
  • Want to keep it in a good shape;
  • Are experiencing difficulties with it;

Then keep reading! 

How does the extractor fan work?

First, let’s explain what this device is and its main function. The job of an extractor fan is to remove any humid oxygen particles from a room. In the meantime, fresh air will enter the space, preferably through a window. The extractor fan should be installed by a team of professionals. Since this is an electrical appliance that is situated in a wet room, it’s dangerous to undertake installation or any repair by yourself. An extractor fan can be installed into the wall, the ceiling, or on a window. 

Why is my bathroom extractor fan not working?

There is a number of reasons why the bathroom extractor fan might not be working. Sometimes, it’s all about proper maintenance.

Dust and debris accumulation

Humidity and dust particles go through your extractor fan every time you take a shower. This makes it the perfect breeding ground for bacteria, mould and mildew. If you don’t clean your extractor fan, it will eventually get blocked. This is a problem for a number of reasons. 

First, your bathroom will smell like a blocked drain. Second, the buildup will eventually cause the fan to stop working. Before it shuts down completely, there will be a period where it would work with less and less efficiency and waste electricity in the process. And third – mould! 

You can easily avoid this if you include the extractor fan in your bathroom cleaning checklist. For that, you’ll have to remove the lid and check its parts. Make sure the power is switched off beforehand to avoid electrocution. You can use a dry cloth and a spray bottle with some window cleaner to wipe the fan blades. If there’s a lot of accumulation, you can also use a hard bristle brush. Also, focus on the joint between the blades and the motor, since the buildup in that area is usually what hinders the fan blades from rotating properly.

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Problem with the wiring

Another reason why your extractor fan stopped working could be loose or beat-up wiring. Usually, it’s the wiring that connects the switch to the motor. It tends to get loose, so the nuts need to be tightened. In some cases, a wiring problem could be caused by rusting of the bolts. If the metal rusts, it could interfere with the flow of electricity to the motor. So, you might need to get some replacement parts. This is not a job for an amateur, so the Fantastic Services team recommends to get in touch with a professional instead.

The motor needs  replacing

If the problem is not dust accumulation or faulty wiring, then it’s probably the motor. If the motor has served its usefulness, all you can do is get a replacement. You can find extractor fan motors in your local home improvement store or get one online. And, once again, we recommend you let a reliable technician handle the repair procedure.

Are you in need of a reliable electrician?

Repairing a faulty extractor fan is no easy job, especially if the machine is located on the ceiling. If this is the case with you, get in touch with Fantastic Services and we will send you a professional electrician to take care of the issue. Whether there’s a problem with the wiring, or the motor needs changing, the reliable technician can help you with the problem. So, what are you waiting for? Make your appointment now!


  • For a homeowner, a working extractor fan is just as important as a working washing machine;
  • The extractor fan should be regularly cleaned so it doesn’t get blocked by mould;
  • If your extractor fan is not working, it’s usually due to dust buildup, a problem with the wiring or the motor might need replacing. 
  • You should hire a certified electrician for any repair work on a bathroom extractor fan.


Did we miss anything? Has your extractor fan ever given you trouble? Tell us in the comments!

Image source: Paul Vinten/shutterctock.com

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