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on August 14, 2016
This fan has been a great purchase for our family. This is actually a second unit we decided to purchase after owning one for a while and wanted an additional unit. Our home does not have central a/c. It is very warm in the day and cool at night. At night I set one fan on intake and one on exhaust and it circulates the cool night air through my bedroom keeping my room a perfect temperature. The thermostat feature is a bonus for me, but I don't find myself using those settings often. I usually leave mine set on high all the time. But for 30-something bucks, it's nice to have extra features in case you want them. I like the expandable side that helps fit the window. I have to extend mine completely to block the opening. The fan is quiet and adds a nice white noise to my room which helps me sleep. I do wish there was an off switch where I didn't have to push through every mode to get back to "off". Pushing through the Mode button sends you through high, low, high 60, 65, 70, 75, 80, low 60, 65, 70, 75, 80, then off. The power cord runs from the bottom left front corner, so that may affect the buyer if a plug is not located under the window. Overall, I think it's a great value because you get so many settings, it's quiet, and it works very well.
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TOP 1000 REVIEWERon June 6, 2009
You are in luck today.

This is a direct comparison review between the three most popular currently available twin window fans:

Bionaire BW2300 Twin Window Fan with Remote Control
Holmes HAWF2043 Twin Window Fan
Honeywell HW-628 Enviracaire Twin Window Fan

If you are interested in purchasing any of those window fans, read on...

I didn't intend to have to do this review because I didn't intend to purchase more than one of these fans. I can tell you now that all of these fans are super cheaply designed and built and none of these fans are perfect, but in my opinion, one is worse than the others.

Holmes HAWF2043 Twin Window Fan: my rating - 3 of 5 stars

I first purchased the Holmes HAWF2043 unit. It was lightweight and fit the window nicely although I had trouble with the extender which is located on the right side. The locks for the extender are located on the right side along the top and bottom edge of the fan, which is supremely stupid because as soon as you place the fan in your window frame and put weight on it, the bottom lock locks and you can not move the extender. What rocket scientist thought of this? So you have to unlock the locks before you place the unit in the window AND keep weight off the bottom lock until you have the extender adjusted to where you want it. This maneuver is not so easy, especially at first. Plus, the lock mechanisms can be difficult to move. At the time, I could not imagine anything worse, but I was wrong as I found out with the extenders on the Honeywell unit which I will go into in the next paragraph. This Holmes unit has the best placement of the power cord which is in the lower left corner... the location is high enough as not to interfere with the bottom of the window frame. This unit has two speeds, high and low. The controls are easy to operate. In fact, there is only one button and two switches. The button cycles through the high and low manual speed settings and then though the automatic temperature presets which are at 60, 65, 70, 75 & 80 degrees fahrenheit. If you set it at one of the temperature presets, the unit will turn off once the sensor reaches that temperature. It seemed to work although I did not have the opportunity to see how accurate that function is. The two switches set the direction of the fans to either intake or exhaust which can be done on each fan independently, so you could have one fan on intake and the other on exhaust for quickly exchanging room air with fresh air. This unit has 8.5 inch fans and they are relatively quiet at both speeds - naturally high is louder than low, but don't expect silence. I own a Kill-A-Watt P3 energy meter and this unit used 46 watts on low and 63 watts on high. I would have been happy with this unit except that two days into using it, the right fan started working intermittently. Of course, that is unacceptable. Returning. I give this fan 3 out of 5 stars because I feel that if you get a good one you'll be happy with it, but don't expect anything great. FYI: Holmes is a division of Sunbeam.

Honeywell HW-628 Enviracaire Twin Window Fan: my rating 2 of 5 stars

So with the right fan not working correctly on the Homes, I ordered the Honeywell HW-628. As soon as I saw it, I knew that I was not going to be happy with it. For one thing, the unit has 7 inch fans compared with 8.5 inch on the Holmes. So in order to move as much air, the fans would have to run much faster and the unit will be much louder. Time to install... I previously mentioned that the extenders on the Holmes were poorly designed, but the extenders on this Honeywell were MUCH worse. First of all, this unit has two shorter extenders on both the right and left sides instead of one longer extender like the Holmes has. Second, the four extender locks are, get this, located on the BACK of the unit, the side facing out the window! How are you supposed to set those? It was impossible for me. I ended up jamming the extenders into the window frame in order to keep them extended. Okay, so I finally get the unit in the window and turned it on. I found out immediately that my thoughts about the smaller fans, higher fan speed and noise were true. This thing is LOUD. Super loud. And buzzy. In fact, I'd go as far as to say that it is downright unruly. There is no chance you would use this in a bedroom even on low speed. The controls were easy to use although not completely intuitive. There are three speeds available on each fan - low, high and super high. You have to set each fan separately, which I think is stupid. I cannot imagine a scenario where I would want one fan on high and another fan on low, etc. The temperature setting dial is also extremely stupid. There are no temperature markings. According to the manual, you are supposed to keep the unit on until the room reaches a temperature that you like and then turn the dial back until the unit cycles off. Seriously? Each fan has its own direction switch for either intake or exhaust. The power cord is located on the bottom center of the front of the unit and its mounted too low so that it interferes with the bottom of my window frame. Who is designing these things? The one feature it had that I liked was that the grilles were directional and could be rotated to direct air in a 360 degree arc. On the power consumption front, this unit used twice the power as the Holmes! - 97 watts on low, 109 watts on high and 120 watts on super high. My unit was defective in that the switches for the right fan are wired incorrectly such that low is high and high is low, but super high is still super high... odd. Returning. Due to the noise level, I would not recommend this unit. I cannot understand how it has 4 of 5 stars and as of today, 262 reviews. Incomprehensible.

Bionaire BW2300 Twin Window Fan with Remote Control: my rating 4 of 5 stars

So after the poor experience with the Honeywell (They put their name on that piece of junk? They are a defense contractor!), I purchased the Bionaire BW2300 hoping for better luck. The first thing I noticed was the similarity between this unit and the Holmes. That is because they are both made by the same company. Bionaire, like Holmes, is Sunbeam. It has the same right side extender locks as the Holmes, but after the experience with the unusable rear locks on the Honeywell, I was happy to see them! One unwelcome difference is that the power cord is located on the bottom center of the front like it is on the Honeywell, which itself is not a problem but its also too low like it is on the Honeywell. I mounted the unit in window fairly quickly and turned it on. Its got three speeds, low, medium and high. It uses 8.5 inch fans like the Holmes and it is relatively quiet, although I think it may be ever so slightly louder than the Holmes on high. The controls are all electronic and it has an electronic temperature readout and thermostat. It is very easy to use. Simply choose a fan speed and put the unit into intake, exhaust or one fan on intake and the other on exhaust (air exchange mode). You can use it either in manual mode where there is no temperature control or you can set a temperature for the unit to reach and then turn off (automatic mode). This is easy to do using the simple up and down buttons to the right of the large temperature readout or you can use the remote control. Once you set it, it will remember your settings if you turn it off as long as you don't unplug it. The remote control works well and it allows you to control all of the fan's features and functions remotely: on/off, fan speed, air direction, temperature and to toggle between automatic and manual mode. Finally, there is a button to change the brightness of the temperature readout, although you cannot completely turn it off. The power usage was similar to the Holmes. The Kill-A-Watt read 43 watts on low, 49 watts on medium and 64 watts on high. Unlike the most popular review for this unit, my temperature probe was located in its proper track and it seems to work well. I've been using it for three weeks now without issue and so this is the keeper. 4 of 5 stars for this. Its not perfect, but in my opinion, its the best of the three.

Just remember that with any window fan, one of the most important things is setting up a ventilation route.

In order for a window fan to be most effective, you have to have a second open window for either:

drawing in fresh air if you put the fan in exhaust mode.
or
exhausting room air if you put the fan in intake mode.

If you don't have a second open window for either mode, you'll either create a vacuum or pressure balloon, respectively - and either way, you'll not be moving much air which is what a fan is all about - in addition, you'll possibly be overheating and likely killing the fan's motors. The second open window can be in another room or on another floor or it could be a screen door, but you need an unobstructed, open source of fresh air with the fan on exhaust or an equally open window for air to exhaust through if you put the fan on intake mode.

Of course, you could use the fan on exchange mode where one fan pushes air in and the other exhausts, but this is not ideal as my observation is that this mode is not nearly as efficient the other two.

Also remember that the outside temperature rules everything. In my experience, in order for a fan to cool a room, the outside temperature needs to be at least ten degrees cooler than the inside temperature, and preferably falling, like it typically does at night. If the outside temperature is about the same as inside or warmer, then you'll not be cooled off by a fan. Humidity counts, too. High humidity = bad.

The window fan works well for me in the evenings/nights where the outside air temperature drops 10 or 15 degrees into the low 60s or 50s, but the inside air temperature would stay high, even with all the windows wide open as often happens without any significant wind or breeze. With the fan on and with the windows and doors set up correctly, the upstairs bedrooms stay within five or six degrees of the outside temp for me without having to turn the air conditioning on in the spring and fall. I find intake mode most effective for me. And again, remember that the effectiveness of any window fan will depend a lot on the outside temperature and humidity level.

As far as these fans are concerned, I would say either get the Holmes HAWF2043 or the Bionaire BW2300, but stay far away from the Honeywell HW-628. Good luck!

UPDATE - June 24th, 2014:

I've had the Bionaire BW2300 for just over five years now. It's holding up quite well. I use it all the time and it works as well today after five years of use as it did when it was brand new out of the box - no problems at all. The remote control and the full temperature controls are nice! I'm very happy with it. Its one of the best things I've ever purchased.

UPDATE - April 19, 2015:

Houston, we have a problem. The flux capacitor has failed! Well, not that but after almost six years of use, I noticed that one of the two fans kept shutting itself down because it was overheating. Overheating? Huh? It was becoming too hot and tripping a protection circuit which was shutting it down until it cooled again. Sooo, what to do, what to do... Take it apart and try to fix it! (Not for the mechanically deficient)...

So the fan case comes apart with seven screws. Easy, right? But those extender locks make a repeat appearance as the design makes it virtually impossible to fully take the case apart without breaking at least one of the extender locks. Which I did. And I don't care since I don't use them. I didn't even bother reinstalling them when I was finished. But I'm getting ahead of myself... Anyway, I then removed the fan blades (single bolt) and then the motors themselves - which turn out to be made by General Electric. I first vacuumed out any dust from both sides of the motors. Then I applied a generous amount of a full synthetic 5w50 motor oil (yes, motor oil) to both sides of the motor shaft and the ball bearings. I worked it in by turning and sliding the play in the shafts and by using gravity to allow the oil to work in on both sides. I then reassembled the unit. Make sure that when you reinstall the fan blades that you key them correctly on the shaft and you may want to hand balance them a little. Also, the extender is a bit tricky to reinstall - make sure you get the end into the three grooves correctly, then extend the extender before you put the other side of the case shell on. You will need to put some support under the extended extender while doing this to keep it flat. And again, I didn't even bother reinstalling the extender locks on mine since I don't use them. So after the operation, the fan works like new again. No overheating. No shutdowns. In fact, the motor is staying very cool now. It just needed a little lube to keep the moving parts moving. You *may* be able to achieve a similar result without taking the whole fan apart by using a spray lube like WD40. But I find that WD40 is too light and it's effects are not long lasting unlike it's strong odor. The full synthetic 5w50 motor oil will work for years and there is no odor.

For me, this issue did not bother me one bit. After six years of heavy use, one should expect this sort of thing. In no way should this discourage you from buying the Bionaire BW2300. It's still one of the best purchases I ever made.

UPDATE - April 20, 2015:

After browsing some of the more recent reviews for the Bionaire BW2300, it seems that there *may* be a problem with the newer units. From what I understand, they added an inline fuse to the power cord and they may have also changed the electronics, but I'm not certain as I do not have one of the newer units. As of this date my fan is almost six years old, purchased in June, 2009, and it does not have an inline fuse on the power cord. My review reflects my experience with my fan and I do not know exactly what changes they may have made to the design since or how those changes may affect the newer units. That said, it is also possible that the spate of issues people are having recently *may* be due to user error. For instance, some of the people having issues may not be setting up an adequate ventilation route to an open window which would overheat the motors and cause shutdowns. But since I do not have one of the newer units, I cannot know what the situation is, one way or the other.
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on August 7, 2017
I write this because several reviews stated the the fan was loud and hard to use. I just bought this fan and placed in my garage window. My garage is a storage and laundry area for me. It gets very hot out there much of the year. I do have several fans out there, but the Holmes fan I bought for the exhaust feature. For many years I had a similar fan by the same manufacturer: a manual unit. Simply reverse the fan in the window for exhaust. It was loud, but it worked well and lasted for like 8 years or more. The Holmes Dual Blade Twin Window Fan has the ability of using one fan in each direction (which seems to defeat the purpose, but whatever...). It can be set either way at the flip of a switch, it has Hi & Lo and a thermostat. I thought this to be a very nice feature...however, not necessary for my needs. For the person who asked, yes, it can be used with or without this feature. I had the same question. Many said this fan was loud. As I stated, my old fan was loud, but I find this new one to be whisper quiet. I almost cannot tell it's on unless I go over there right in front of it. It does not move as much air as my old one did on fan, though. But as stated, I will use it mainly on exhaust. Longevity? Well, we will see.
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on July 19, 2017
For the price, it's great.
My room gets really humid and this fan will suck a lot of the hot air out of my room.
I live in California on the second floor and it is significantly hotter in my room than in the hallway/outside.
I haven't woken up from a nap drenched in sweat like I was before since I purchased this.

Yes, I still need to use my Lasko tower fan and yes, I still sweat a little if I nap in the afternoon, but it makes a large difference.
I am not waking up from being overly hot.

If you want an alternative to using a portable AC/window AC unit, and you have a nice, cooling fan inside the room, this window fan will do that job well. I also chose this one (more expensive than the other model) because you can electronically change the direction. It also blows IN air really nicely when the air outside is cool (it feels like an AC). I didn't want to have to manually pick up my window fan and turn the thing around to reverse it. It's fantastic to me.
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on May 22, 2017
I have casement windows and this fit PERFECTLY in it! My old one by the same brand did not have the option for intake or exhaust so we would have to keep flipping the fan around which was a pain. This one is just what we were looking for! It has the option for exhaust/intake and to switch from high, low or a degree setting is great. Totally recommend!
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on March 13, 2016
These are great fans ! I had 2 window fans made by Holmes for years, no issues. So when it came time to replace them I went with the same company. I have a large (52" wide) window in my bedroom and I purchased 2 of these fans to sit side-by-side. They are awesome, a little bigger than the ones I replaced, and push a lot of air. Not noisy, but quiet considering all the air being moved.
Some reviews complained that you have to push the on/off button through all the cycles to turn them off. This is not the case. As the instructions explain, all you have to do is hold the button down for about 2 seconds and the fan will turn off.
Love the thermostat control, I also had this on the old fans, and it works great.
You will not be disappointed with this fan.
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on November 6, 2017
i love this fan. lighter than my last one, so light, it is about 1inch short of the width of the window. they really should add a couple inches to the length. but love the exhaust fan, no cold air in, just inside air out. then in the summer nights blow cold air in. i got it when there were hot days and cool nights, it was nice to blow outside cool air into the warm stale room. Its a one button function. To set the desired temp. I would like an overide button that lets me just on off. because on a couple of ocasions it would turn off because it was reading the temp incorectly. but it has not been an issue, i just have to choose a higher or lower temp and it comes on. If you found my review helpful please click the yes button below so I know you found my review helpful, thanks
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on June 25, 2016
Holmes Dual Blade Twin Window fan with One Touch Thermostat

For the $35.25 price that I paid, I am reasonably happy with the Holmes Dual Blade Twin Window fan with One Touch Thermostat
(model # HAWF2043 ) so much so, that I wanted to buy one more, but not at the current price of $50.14 that Amazon is charging today. At the $50 price point, there are similar window fans that include remote control. If the price of this fan drops back to $35, I will be happy to buy another one.

Other than price considerations, here are my thoughts on the features of this Holmes model # HAWF2043 window fan, compared to the $20 Holmes(model # HAWF2021 ) :

Quiet, much more so than the $20 Holmes model # HAWF2021
Bigger fan blades (six 8" blades) than the HAWF2021
Better fan box design for improved air flow, compared to HAWF2021
Reversible, each fan is easily switchable to exhaust or intake - (not an option on model HAWF2021)

Another feature of Holmes Dual Blade Twin Window fan with One Touch Thermostat ( model HAWF2043 ) is a series of options, all of which are accessed by a single button. I have found the thermostat settings to be annoying, and usually opt for either high or low fan settings - without the thermostat engaged. In my opinion, a timer option would be more desirable than the thermostat.

In summary, the Holmes model HAWF2043 is a much better fan than the Holmes model HAWF2021.
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on July 1, 2016
I bought this to replace a box fan that we stick in the window every summer. The old fan still works, but it is half the width of the window, so I prop cardboard in the window to block if off where the fan isn't. I figured this was made for my window, so it would be perfect. It is good, but not perfect.

We use this in a front window, so I can't leave it in place all the time. This means I have to place it and then remove it daily. I need to loosen the accordion slider each time I want to place and remove the fan. The slider that blocks off the right side of the opening is maxed out for my window, and it is not the easiest to get right. I can do it, but my wife has problems getting it so far. I'm sure with practice it will come more easily to her. I bet after a while we will just leave it one click smaller than where we want it so the fan can be quickly and easily placed and removed.

The fan is quiet, but this is because it does not move as much air as the old box fan. Until it gets really hot, I won't know for sure if it moves enough air. So far, I am happy with the volume of air it can move.

You can reverse the flow really easily. This is actually a huge thing. Just slide a switch for each fan and the fan reverses, even when moving. It's great to get cool air blowing into the house at high speed, but when you want to sit and watch TV, you can slide the switches and not have air blowing across your face.

The controls are a but cumbersome since I pull it daily, but even if you keep it in place there is one issue. To set the fan for low speed and 75 degrees you have to hit the button to sequence from "High" to "High 60°" to "High 65°" to "High 70°" to "High 75°" ... You get the idea. If you miss and go one too far, get ready to push push push until you get the right setting.

Finally, the last small minus. The temperature setting. They did not build any hysteresis into the control circuit. Usually when you have something with a thermostat it will cool until just below the desired temperature and then not turn on again until you are a bit over the temperature setting. Not this. If you have it set at 75, then as soon as it sees 75 degrees it turns off. But three seconds later it sees it is too warm and turns back on again. Then ten seconds later it gets to temperature and turn off. This will continue until you either set the temperature above or below where you want it, or just set it on High or Low.

What would make this better would be to change the circuitry to keep the on-off cycles from repeating quickly, and separating the temperature from the fan speed. Basically, make it really easy to just turn it on to High or Low. That would get this up to five stars. As it is I actually make it closer to 3.75. Lose one star for the controls, and then a quarter because my use case makes it harder to remove and install often. Since most people will leave it in place for long periods, I took the negative and made it smaller. For someone who places this once and leaves it there, this is a solid four or five star fan, depending on how much the fan switching on and off bugs you.
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Received fan and there was a wobble sound when on low. Called manufacturer and advised them. They instructed me to return it to seller, then asked what I paid for it. They offered to sell me the fan directly for about $1 less. I was surprised that they are trying to undercut their retailers! Anyway, I exchanged it. Same exact problem with this one. On low set to exhaust, wobble sound drives me crazy! Kept it as it's summer and we need a fan, but I can't use it on low exhaust which is annoying.
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