Harbor Breeze fan does not remember light setting from remote due to power outage

QUESTION: A site visitor recently let us know that their Harbor Breeze ceiling fan was having a problem where, if the fan lost power, the light would come in after the fan received power again. This was a frustrating experience for the site visitor, because they would lose power in the middle of the night, and when the power was restored the light from the fan would come on while they’re trying to sleep. Using the remote didn’t help as the fan wouldn’t “remember” the setting after losing power. How do you fix this problem?

Harbor Breeze Handheld Universal Remote Control
A remote losing it’s settings is actually more common then you might think. There are a few things to check, but ultimately it may be best to involve an electrician – especially if you get to the point where you need to start checking the fan’s wiring with a multimeter. This can either by by design, or a wiring problem with the fan.


ANSWER. This issue could be broken down into multiple potential issues:

  • Wiring. It’s possible that when the fan was installed, a wire was not connected properly, is loose, or there are connections that are not supposed to be happening. For instance, it’s possible the switch was wired backwards. So when you think you are turning the fan off you are turning it on and vica versa. If you feel this might be the culprit, try leaving the fan light in the “on” position
  • Issue is by design. The fan may not have any of “logic” built in to be able to “remember” a previous setting.
  • Installed incorrectly. The wiring could be connected in such a way that the default state of the fan is “ON,” so as soon as it receives power it turns on. It’s also possible the remote wire is not connected right, resulting in this behavior.
  • Try a different receiver. You can purchase a universal remote + receiver combo to replace the receiver, and generally it’s not too difficult to do this work yourself.


If none of this works: Call an electrician. An electrician will be able to look at this problem and give the best answer. In most cases, the wiring and how things are connected needs to be reviewed.

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