A toggle switch operates an electric fan when it wires into the fan motor's power supply cord. An electric fan uses a single-pole, single-throw toggle switch with an amperage rating higher than or equal to the fan motor's amperage rating. The toggle switch contains a metal armature and a contact point, and it connects to the power cord with two wire terminals. The armature pivots on one wire terminal, and the other wire terminal connects to the contact. When the toggle switch flips on, the armature closes against the contact, which completes the electric circuit and turns on the fan.
Things You'll Need
Pull the electric fan's plug from the wall receptacle/electrical outlet, or turn off the fan's circuit breaker if the fan motor hard wires into the electrical system.
Choose a spot along the electric fan's power cord for the toggle switch, and cut one of the power cord wires with wire cutters. If the fan's power cord contains a black wire and a white wire, cut the black wire. If the fan's power cord covers each wire with the same color of insulation, then cut either wire.
Pull 2 inches of both cut ends on the fan's power cord away from the uncut wire. Most single-colored electric fan cords have a thin strip of insulation holding both wires together. Pulling on the cut end of the wire separates both wires.
Remove 3/8 inch of the insulation from each cut wire with wire strippers. If the electric fan cord has a braided wire strand, twist the braided strands together after removing the insulation.
Loosen the two toggle switch terminal screws with the correct type and size of screwdriver.
Wrap the stripped end of one of the electric fan cord wires around one of the toggle switch's terminal screws. Tighten the toggle switch's terminal screw with the screwdriver.
Bend the stripped end of the second electric fan cord wire over the second toggle switch terminal screw. Tighten the toggle switch's terminal screw with the screwdriver.