Sunday, April 3, 2016

Honewell's QuietSet 16 Fan Actually IS Quiet, But... (UPDATED)


Originally published 7-6-15, updated 4-3-16:  It's been my desire to find a room fan that is quiet enough so you do not have to shout over it, or have to watch TV with the volume at 75 to 90% to hear over the fan. And to date, I've not been very successful. But today, I believe I found the trick and magic combination to finding a tolerably quiet fan! No, really!!!

The other day my go to fan for quiet started making a noise that woke the dead. The motor on the thing finally gave up the ghost and it started sounding like metal sandpaper sheets grinding against each other. Apparently my days of dismantling it and adding WD-40 are probably done.

So I headed out to Target to see what they have for me and I found a few models of fans available. One was about $25-$30 and the other was around $50.

On the premise of "you get what you pay for," and dodging the "Target only" $30 fan, I looked at the $50 fan.

Iy has the Honeywell brand on it and it is called the "QuietSet." What's interesting is this fan is referred to as the "KAZ Inc Honeywell QuietSet 16"  (KAZ distributes Honeywell fans.)

Normally I don't fall for sales pitches but then I had considered that my wife brought a fan into our relationship that is about 30 years old and still working. Yep, a Honeywell fan. Boy, I loved how they made things to last in "the day!"
But these days it seems to be all about "planned obsolescence," and making things as cheaply as possible. Or in the case of my Motorola phone, seemingly adding features to it that make it slower and devolving the camera to a 15-second shutter delay!

But I digress.

Below is my early take on the KAZ Honeywell QuietSet 16 and after that, I looked around at various websites and took in some user reviews.

For me, pulling it out of the box and setting it up was a breeze. Ha! That was a pun! But it did construct pretty quickly.

I slapped it together and turned it on and low and behold, the fan itself moved a ton of air and was pretty quiet doing it.

What I am discovering is that larger bladed fans move more air and don't need as many rpm's as smaller fans do. My 12" fan had to crank it out and it was pretty noisy doing it. But this new fan is very quiet.

It has five speeds and auto-shut down options for 1, 2, 4 and 8 hours. Meaning it will shut down in 1 to 8 hours, if you want. I tested the 4-hour shut down mode and it did the trick, as advertised.

My initial reaction to this fan is a pretty good one, considering how loud fans can be.

But this is only day one. With how things are made these days, I'm holding my breath for a week? A month? More? Who knows. But right now, without any durability testing, I can say my first impressions are great.

BUT...

For one, looking around the web, for once Amazon does not have a cheaper price than a brick-and-mortar store. In Target it cost about $50. Amazon prices range from one Prime seller offering it for $33 in black, $40 in white. (We got the white one.) Other sellers want $60 and up for it, plus shipping. So beware.

On Target's site a few reviewers say it came out of the box squeaking pretty bad. And a few others say it only lasted a year.

On Amazon  ( Honeywell QuietSet 16" Stand Fan - Black )  it has a 4.1 out of 5 star rating from 350+ reviewers.

Of the ratings, 10% were "1 star," 7%: "2," 8%: "3." That says that 25% of the reviews were 3 and less, leaving 75% of the reviews at 4 and up. That 25% is a bit of an eye-opener if you look at it that way. I am going to guess the higher rated scores are early adopters that review things upon first impressions and not long standing reviews... you'll see in a moment. But is 25% an acceptable failure rate?

So I took a look at a few reviews and saw some statements like the following:

"I loved this fan when we first got it. It has variable speeds (including whisper quiet mode), it oscillates, it has a remote control, and a sleep timer. Flat out, it was awesome and we were thrilled with it... right up until it quit working.  Less than a year old, we went to turn on the fan one day and all it did was light up and hum. "

And it seem to be a common observation about the fan.

There are also notes about the blue LEDs that light up the control panel being too bright.For those that sleep with night lights, it should never be a problem.

Some say the stand of the fan is not stable, but ours seems pretty solid. No worries here.

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So my concern is that it might have a one-year life span. (Did I not mention planned obsolescence???) I love this fan so much by just after one day that I want to rush out and buy more. But I guess I should sit back and wait.

Food for thought: Others mention their Lasko fans as long lasting products and I may consider looking at one of those, though the comparative statements say it is not as quiet.

Now if you only drop $30 to $40 on the fan and it will croak in a year, it might not be a bad fee to pay for the quiet. It's like paying for an online subscription to Adobe products. It is ridiculous, but it gets the job done. In the long run you will be paying A LOT for it, but if it serves the purpose...

But then I don't want to support a company that may make a bad product that seems to quit. And I have to wonder if that's an intentional design from saving money on questionable quality product to create these fans?

For the money, I am not unhappy. Yet. And now that I know there might be issues with the fan motor, I may go into preventative mode and start lubricating the fan just because.

- - -

UPDATE 4-3-16:

Well, I have had the fan 10 months. It has received approximately 5 or 6 months worth of use, through the warmer summer months. It's been quiet through the winter, but as of today, the motor is binding up and needs to be replaced.

Food for thought, as the fan has barely lasted a year, with partial use.

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Hi - sorry for the confirmation but I need to weed out the noise from the well intended comments. Thanks for leaving a note... - Bruce