Customer Reviews: Lasko 5165 Digital Ceramic Tower Heater with Remote Control
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on January 7, 2013
This heater works perfectly. Some of the other reviews on here mention specific negatives, and I suggest that those people read the fine manual. For example:

Comment: "The Thermometer is inaccurate by a few degrees in most."
Correct. If you read the instruction manual, it states that the heater will heat two degrees above the thermostat setting, then switching off. It will switch on again when the temperature falls one degree below the thermostat setting. This is actually how most thermostats work.

Comment: "The power cable is thinner than what other leading safe room heaters have."
I am not sure what this means. A power cable's gauge (thickness) will be proportional to the current (amperage) by which it is engineered to draw. The thickness of the copper wiring does not correspond to safety, and would only become a safety issue if the thickness of the wire were not rated for the current of which the appliance draws. I would hope to assume that the engineers at Lasko are well aware of the very established standards for wire gauge versus current drawn, and without wasting my time analyzing the gauge of wire and the appliance's current, I'm going to assume that it's more than adequate.

Comment: "this tower fan will not heat a large room effectively."
Correct. The appliance is rated for medium sized rooms, as stated on the packaging.

Comment (paraphrased): "The thermostat (auto-temperature) only works on high."
This is incorrect. Please read the manual. Switching from high to low is also the mechanism by which you disengage the thermostat. If you switch from high to low, or from low to high, then you simply need to push the (+) or (-) thermostat buttons to re-engage the thermostat. The thermostat functions on both high and low.

This heating appliances works great, and it functions in accordance with the manual. A recommended purchase.
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TOP 1000 REVIEWERon October 24, 2012
Scroll down to read:

1) My ORIGINAL REVIEW of this product (at that time I gave it four stars)
2) My LATER REVIEW (dropping to three stars)

The main things I LIKE about this little heater are:
* It has quiet operation, and heats up a room very fast.
* I also like the design, it's simple and easy on the eyes, and like how lightweight it is. Even a two year old could lug this around without getting tired out.
* It has an easy-carry handle built in.
* It heats quickly and the oscillating feature distributes the heat nicely. It does an efficient job of turning electrical energy into heat.

The main thing I DISLIKE about it, which I'd imagine would be a major concern in a house with pets or small children, is that it doesn't turn off when knocked over. This could be extremely hazardous. It's not an issue for me because I place it in an area where it's not going to get knocked over. But if a friend with a young boisterous child dropped over, I would unplug it first. There's also a bit of a smell to the one I just bought today when it's in use, but I expect that's because it's new and it will burn off. The old one doesn't have a smell.

I also don't like that you have to use it on full power (1500 watts) to use the thermometer feature. I don't need that much heat and don't want to blow out a circuit breaker, so I prefer using it on the 750 watt setting...but that means I don't have the thermometer option. The easy timer feature does work in both modes, so I just set it for an hour and forget it. So this isn't a deal breaker for me.

By the way, I saved over $2000 last winter by using electric heaters in the coldest weather, instead of heating with oil. (That's not a typo... I saved over two grand.) The savings come from both the fact that electricity is currently cheaper than heating oil (which gets outrageously expensive), and, using small heaters allows a person to only heat the rooms that are in use. In the winter I use the furnace in the morning for ten minutes to take the chill off of the air, and in the evening for the same reason. I have these two Lasko heaters and two oil-filled heaters, which I use in various rooms in the house to keep it warm and toasty. It is a HUGE savings over the cost of oil. The house stays warm enough that I don't need a shirt or shoes, and I'm saving a huge amount of money in the process.
UPDATED REVIEW (November 20120

I'm changing my review from 4 stars to 3 stars.

A year after buying this model, I needed a second heater for another room, so I bought one with the same specs. Same name and model number. Should work well, right?

Wrong. The new one "looks" the same from a distance but are not identical. The new one is a little smaller and the color of the plastic casing is a little different. Evidently there was a redesign after I bought the first one, and different materials are being used.

If that was the only issue, I'd still be giving it four stars. (Last year's model still works great.) But the new one had severe problems. It worked twice, for a half hour or so each time. Then the third time I turned it on, it developed an extremely loud, obnoxious fan with a grinding sound, like the sound of a loud kitchen blender or food processor going full tilt. Not exactly a relaxing fan sound. I don't know if this is a one-time flaw, or if when Lasko did the redesign, they went with cheaper materials, like a cheap fan that would fall apart after being used one or two hours of use. Whatever --- I took it back to Target, where I bought it, and got a refund.

It's a shame because the one I bought last year is still working well. But the new one got less than two hours of use out of it before going kaput.

While I can't say for sure, I suspect that the problem is that Lasko went with cheaper materials this time round. It saves them a few dollars but at the cost of consumers dealing with problems after purchasing it. Or maybe it was just a fluke and I got one with a bad fan. But it's made me cautious about buying from Lasko again.
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on March 31, 2013
I have two Lasko remote towers Model 5538 from 2010 or 2011 that still work without a problem. Purchased two Lasko Ceramic Heaters, Model 5165 from Target in November 2012. I paid $49.99 plus 8% tax for each device for a total of $I07.98. plugged one unit in and noticed it began to make a noise. After one week I noticed the cord began to over heat when in the HI position. It eventually overheated and melted the electrical outlet. I immediately removed the cord and contacted Target to let them know this device is defective. I will also contact Lasko via email.

This product NEEDS TO BE REMOVED from the market BEFORE IT BURNS SOMEONE'S HOME DOWN. If left unattended, the electrical outlet will overheat causing internal wiring to catch fire in homes that do not have AFCI breakers or outlets. AFCI (Arc Fault Circuit Interrupters) outlets will short the wiring before it catches fire. Most homes built prior to 2010, do not have these upgraded breaker panels or wall outlets.

I took a photos of the burnt cord, the ceramic heater, original box and the damaged outlet. Did not see a manufactured date on the product or instruction manual. I immediately contacted the store, explained the problem, then contacted Lasko. I returned the products for a full refund, as I was too scared to try the second unit and gave Lasko 7 days to respond to my email.

It took me to contact or for Lasko to leave me a message. I place several calls to reach Lasko consumer complaints. The employee did not immediately return my telephone call. When I spoke to him, he was more concerned with getting his hands on the product, asking for the telephone number to the store to have them retun those units to Lasko. Then he tried to blame me, telling me I needed to upgrade the wiring in my home to accomodate these heaters. Really? If that is the case, a warning should be clearly posted on the outside of the box advising the public that if they do not have AFCI breakers and recepticles in their home, do not use or purchase these heaters. If you buy or own this heater, "Don't let FIRE be your interior decorator."
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on December 21, 2015
Great little midsize tower heater. Thermostat works great, if you have on high and use controls or remote hitting temp up or down button converts over to your preset thermostat temperature (I put on high to warm up room at bedtime then let it go to lower thermostat temp of 66 for sleeping. Remote is a little awkward to use in the dark, but overall a great purchase. Color is not white, but more the color of your office copier kind of a grey/beige/white, still looks just fine.
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on February 9, 2015
Very warm! Having a remote control is a plus. You can also put on a timer to have it shut off after an hour, 2, 3, 4, etc. This heater can put out some good heat but still the case stays cool enough to the touch. Great for those cold, blustery days. Won't heat up a room but will help take the chill out in the home office or when getting up in the morning. It does shut down at 2 deg. above the programmed setting and not kick in until 2 deg. below the programmed setting so you'll have to adjust the programmed setting to suit your needs and compensate for that. Probably best to set it 2 degrees higher than what you want it to kick in at and keep the unit several feet away so you get warmed up but not too warm.
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on October 19, 2015
My legs get cold really easy in the office (with jeans on), and this tower of power has been my savior for a few years already. It's done such a great job that I actually own two of them, one for work and one at home. Can also withstand a ton of abuse (eg frequent drops and tilts).
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on December 17, 2015
The Lasko 5165 Digital Ceramic Tower Heater with remote is not well-built and it's noisy. I ordered 2 of these for two different rooms to replace a couple of aging space heaters that didn't have remote controls. These Lasko units seemed perfectly fine for the first 5-10 minutes. After that, both started vibrating and rattling, even when not oscillating. It wasn't so bad that I thought they were going to fall apart or were broken, but the noise and clicking was bad enough to be extremely annoying in a quiet room like the bedroom and the home office in which I was using them. I'd chalk it up to getting a bad unit if it were just the one. But both of them started making these noises and both did so within 5-10 minutes of being turned on. The plastic feels very cheap, and they are way too large. The heating element is only about a third of the height of the entire unit. These could have been made much more compact (which might also help reduce the amount of rattling noise they generate). I don't need my space heater to be a piece of furniture... and a noisy, clicking, rattling one at that.

Functionally, they worked fine. Heat output was good. Remote worked fine. Features are nice. But with the rattling, clicking and vibrating I cannot recommend this space heater. They have been returned. I'll be looking into a trusty Honeywell.
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on February 20, 2016
Most convenient heater I've ever bothered with. Oscillation isn't as wide as I first imagined, but it more than does the trick. Temperature is programmable and kicks on any time it's under 2 degrees from what you set it. Hi/lo feature is very convenient as well for mornings where my body doesn't want to wake up and keep myself warm. Only complaint I have is the noise. When you're laying down trying to sleep, the vibrations get so strong that sometimes it sounds like a small helicopter, but that's only when it's been on for too long. Hasn't overheated or anything so far and the remote is definitely a plus when I'm in bed and want to turn it back on or off in the middle of the night.
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on November 24, 2014
I love this. I have purchased other electric heaters that burnt up in a matter of days. This thing is still helping heat the living room after several weeks and doing a fine job. Even through a recent cold spell of sub-zero wind chills. Recommended.
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on November 22, 2015
I purchased this model (in black) at a brick and mortar retailer. So far, I'm pretty happy with it. The previous space heaters I've used have been a little $20 job that blasted heat (coils) on HI or LO only and required constant attention for safety's sake, and an oil-filled radiator-style heater, which also put out quite a bit of concentrated heat, but it wasn't mine to keep.

That said, I expected this unit to perform similarly. It does not, and that is a good thing. The ceramic heating element is safe, and the tower design allows for a smaller footprint than a radiator-style heater. The built-in fan and oscillation (approx. 45 degree range) function help to circulate the warm air quite nicely in my 12'4" x 12'4" room. I do have a ceiling fan running on medium most times, regardless of season, so that does help. When walking between the front and back of the apartment, the difference is noticeable, but the heat isn't so overwhelming while I'm in the room that I feel the need to fidget with turning it off or on.

This leads me to the automatic temperature function, which I really appreciate. This mode only functions on HI, and the thermostat monitors the room temperature, and when the temperature drops to 1 degree below the programmed temp, it turns on until the room temperature is 2 degrees higher then the programmed temp. The unit is also very quiet.

The ceramic heating element is safer than most convection space heaters, and this unit is designed with an overheat safety trigger. It has to be reset by the user (unplug it for 10 minutes) before it can be turned on again. I set it on its side to see if there was a tip-over safety like the little coil heater I had, but it does not. Although this is a tower design, there isn't really a pedestal like on some oscillating tower fans. That, and the fact that this is a bottom-heavy unit makes me fairly comfortable with not having a tip-over safety.

This unit does have a timer function, which I have yet to try out, as I keep it on the automatic temperature. The timer function may be used on either HI or LO, and may be set to turn itself off between 1 and 8 hours from when it's set.

The remote is relatively sleek and simple, with every control that is on the heating unit. The remote footprint is about the size of a computer mouse.

Overall, spending a Grant isn't something I was excited to do, but I'm glad I didn't spend skimp ten or fifteen for a lesser product. This is worth it.
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