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Customer Review

256 of 266 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars DO NOT DRAIN THE WATER!, March 23, 2012
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This review is from: Frigidaire FRA053PU1 5,000 BTU Portable Air Conditioner (Kitchen)
There is NO REASON to drain the water from the bottom outlet during normal conditions.

Modern portable units REUSE the condensation water to their advantage (for evaporative cooling). The only time you would drain is if you need to move the portable system.

My house has central air, but my computer room gets hot on it's own, and central air doesn't kick in since the average house temperature isn't hot enough for it to kick in. So the solution? Get an air conditioner for just the computer room. I have a vertical sliding window, and that makes getting an affordable window air conditioner quite difficult. I settled for this portable AC.

Installation of the window pane didn't take too long, and was generally easy. Only issue is that although the pane was more than long enough (maximum length of 48.5"; minimum of 26.6"), the amount of non-adhesive and adhesive seal was insufficient to make rounds around the window, resulting in gaps for outside air to freely come in, as well as potential bugs.

Another issue is that the window pane has holes on it for screws that I'm not using (since this is meant for both vertical and horizontal window panels; so I'm not using the horizontal screws), and again, this will result in the outside air to freely come in, as well as potential bugs.

Both issues are solved by getting more seal, and/or taping it up.

Note that sound and heat/cold radiation will be more with this window pain, since it's just one sheet, as opposed to double-panel windows, which insulate very well.

In addition to the window kit, an L-shaped metal hinge is included so that you can block the window from sliding, since you can't lock your window anymore (for vertical sliding windows), for security.

The duct is of better quality than I imagined. It's very hard, and will not crinkle easily, and can do tight turns (although this is not recommended in the manual). It however does not come with any insulating material, so you may want to get a cover for it to insulate the heat better. The duct ranges from 15" to 55" in length.

The remote is also of better quality than I imagined. It has a small LCD display with backlight that shows the current settings, and you can change any of these settings using it. I expected a non-LCD remote with just buttons on it. It uses 2 AAA batteries, of which are included.

It cools. Very well. Outside temperature is 70F, house temperature is 77F, room temperature was 89F while installing this unit. After about an hour, room temperature is down to 75F, of which I am happy of (and will keep around there).

This unit features fan-only mode and cooling mode, with cooling mode having two options: manual and auto. Manual, you control everything, fan speed and temperature. Auto, it controls it by itself to get it down to the temperature you want it at, and keep it there (so if it's hot, it will blast the fan at full 'till it gets to lower temperature, then start using slower fan speed for quieter operations).

It also features sleep-mode, in addition to timers, which increases the temperature every half hour for 7 hours, then decreases it back to what you set it at (so you can save energy by not using it as much when you're asleep).

Power consumption, in the manual, says it uses 8.4-9.1A @ 115V input, and estimates a power usage of 560 Watts for cooling.

Note: Fan is on at all times if the device is on, presumably to take advantage of the evaporative cooling, so it will never be silent as long as it's on. Be sure to take this into account if you're planning on using this in the room you sleep in.
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Tracked by 5 customers

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Showing 1-8 of 8 posts in this discussion
Initial post: Mar 30, 2012 4:14:08 PM PDT
The warning part is a tad alarmist, don't you think? It's true it's not designed to be drained, UNLESS you are moving it from room to room, in which case Frigidaire recommends you empty the drip pan. I'm wondering what do you use for a heat shield for the vent hose? I can envision drapes catching on fire from the heat, I think your idea for a heat shield is a good one!

In reply to an earlier post on Mar 30, 2012 4:33:06 PM PDT
Charlie says:
I've read reviews saying that they hate the draining they have to do, and I want to warn people that you don't need to drain.

As for insulation, I doubt drapes will catch on fire... it doesn't get THAT hot =P.

In reply to an earlier post on May 19, 2012 11:36:24 AM PDT
Kyle says:
How long is the hose/duct? Trying to figure out how far can the unit be from the window.

In reply to an earlier post on May 19, 2012 12:10:39 PM PDT
Last edited by the author on May 19, 2012 12:13:15 PM PDT
Charlie says:
It is ~5 ft long (55").

Posted on Mar 17, 2013 2:03:55 AM PDT
TiffanieAnn says:
I like my bedroom cool... Around 68 or so, capable of doing that? I live in Ohio & work 3rd shift & normal temp in my bedroom is anywhere between 75-82 in the summer...hard to sleep.

Posted on Mar 18, 2013 1:51:31 PM PDT
Ashley says:
Within in 12 hours of running my unit on cooling it had a p1 error(meaning it needs to be drained.) My unit would no longer operate until it was drained. I called customer service and was told this is normal and to drain it everyday.

In reply to an earlier post on May 22, 2013 2:08:15 PM PDT
No it's not alarmist. Why don't you say the same thing to the countless reviews on this product alone that talk about "I read the manual OF i drained the water regularly and it's broken!" Idiots

In reply to an earlier post on Jul 8, 2013 7:35:21 AM PDT
DRM says:
Charlie, Thanks for your long and helpful post about this unit.

However, I'm still a bit confused on the draining question: You and others seem pretty sure that the unit does not need to be drained except when you're moving the unit. However, I just called the company and was told that you should drain it after every 24 hours of use. While the persn I spoke to did not sound very knowledgeable, she claimed to have looked it up in some internal system (separate from the manual, which, as others have noted, says nothing about draining from the bottom (non-dehumidifier) hole).

Would you mind giving a little more info on why the unit does not need to be drained? Was that based on some document that came with the unit or from the company itself?

Any further info would be much appreciated.
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