Pros: Top exhaust, useful digital display
Cons: Efficient but noisy fan
First, the picture shown at the epinions page is incorrect. You can find correct picture from Walmart.com
My Fedders 45 pint humidifier from Wal-mart has been running for three days. I have a house built two years ago and the 1300sq.ft unfinished basement becomes smell moldy during damp summer days.
Because of large square footage, I needed somewhat large dehumidifier to circulate air. I found I need these features;
(1) Side or top air exhaust: I wanted to place dehumidifier against the basement corner.
Because the efficiency may be impacted if I let the rear exhaust air to mix with intake air, the rear exhaust model which will make undesirable turbulence when placed at the corner was something to avoid.
(2) Digital humidity display: I wanted to know how humid the basement is. I didn't want to pay extra electricity to overdry the basement.
(3) Reputable manufacturer: Haier dehumidifier from Target was not very appealing to me. By the way, I had Fedders window air conditioner at my quarter in Army barracks and it worked good.
(4) Good customer review ratings: Whirlpool dehumidifier did not earn high point in this aspect. It had many reviews which say it is very noisy.
There are few models which provide side or top air exhaust. SoleusAir dehumidifier earned good reviews thanks to its low noise but it does't seem to circulate large amount of air to handle 1300sq.ft. Whirlpool was reviewed to be noisy.
Therefore, Fedders 45 pint model from Walmart.com was logical choice for me. It was $134 itself but the ground shipping and tax added so the total I paid was $163.21. It is not as cheap as LG model available from Best Buy sale price. But this Fedders has top exhaust instead of LG's rear exhaust. Home depot sells the same model but their price is $199 and they are not available at stores (online order only.)
One advantage of ordering from Walmart.com is that you can return it to any Walmart store. However, shipping cost is deducted. But it is way easier than retuning to online-only merchant. No RMA number, No ship-back cost, No restocking fee...
The UPS ground delivery was quick, took three days from order to receiving the delivery. It was light and easy to set up. The box contained an assembled dehumidifier and a pouch with user manual and hose adapter in it. The plastic cabinet is well finished and texture is good. In short, it does not look cheap.
Noise level was not very low. The compressor was quite, as loud as refrigerator. But the fan to draw air into condenser made most of the noise. I wouldn't place the dehumidifier in my bedroom or living space. It is as loud as a tabletop fan running at high speed. But there is no abnormal noise like rattle or squeak. The fan speed is adjustable to high and low, but the low fan speed is not whisper quite either. However, there is 1 hour pause button so that you can keep the humidifier quite when you have guest in the same room.
The exhaust is routed to the grill at the top of the cabinet. It would be better if there is a vane to direct the exhaust to front instead of directly upward. SoleusAir has it, but again the fan looks too weak for me. And because all SoleusAir dehumidifier is only available online, returning it when I may dissatisfy will be a great hassle. Have you tried to return your online purchase?
The garden hose adapter is easy to install. It is a short piece of plastic pipe which has thread on one end. I bought a 10' hose remnant from ACE hardware for $7.99 but a better dehumidifier hose is available at Sear's Kenmore brand for $3.75. Any hose with garden hose fitting will work.
After running it for first two days, it filled a bucket. Now entire 1300sq.ft basement feel drier. I am satisfied with the circulation power of the dehumidifier fan.
(1) Top exhaust
(2) Solid perceived quality (control panel, noise, etc.)
(3) Digital display for both set and current humidity
(4) Energy star rating
(5) Reasonable price
(1) Not whisper quite