Honeywell HO-5500RE tower fan review – big and powerful

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Our Rating Price when reviewed 70inc VAT (as of 23rd of June)

Among the most powerful fans we’ve seen but it’s not without one or two minor niggles

Specifications

Dimensions: 1,035x305x305mm, Weight: 4.5kg, Air movement angle: 68 degrees, Rotation angle: 55 degrees, Cord length: 1.8m, Warranty: 3 year RTB 

Honeywell is one of the big players in the world of tower fans, and the HO-5500RE is a good example of why, with a decent design and a powerful blast of air at the top end.

It’s easy to build (though a touch wobbly when done), and it’s nice and tall, so it should deliver air at a height that’s useful. Despite this, it manages to remain reasonably understated as tower fans go: a simple tube of dark grey plastic. Rather than the whole tower rotating, the centre section only turns, this looks very neat but does limit the angle of rotation to around 55 degrees, less than the 70 degrees that most models offer. However, this is offset by the fairly wide 68-degree cone of air it expels even when stationary. 

It’s easy to use, though not quite as idiot-proof as the new Quiet model I’ve seen, as there are some control icons you’ll have to work out by trial and error. The dinky remote control slots right into the back when not in use, but should you lose it, you can set up Honeywell fans on universal remotes like the Logitech Harmony.

One note for people who value a good night’s sleep above all else: the angled top on the 5500RE means that the buttons face outwards, and the backlighting can’t be turned off, meaning the fan stays illuminated all night long. If you’re a really light sleeper, you might want to put some gaffer tape over the top of the controls, which isn’t ideal.

Performance

The HO-5500RE offers an extremely powerful blast on its top setting, putting out a whopping 5.1m/s when measured right next to the tower itself, dropping to 2.2m/s at one metre and 1.2m/s at two metres. That’s a stronger performance than every other fan I’ve seen, even bettering the Dyson Pure Cool, which, lest we forget, retails for around £380 more.

How it manages this impressive level of cooling is unsurprising however: it’s loud. On the top setting, measured right next to the fan, the sound level meter measured a volume of 79.1db, dropping to 50.5db two metres away. There are only three fan power levels, and although the fan does have a ‘night-time mode’, it’s really strangely implemented: the power of the fan is alternated between whisper quiet and jet-engine every few seconds. Truthfully it’s anything other than restful, and most people would be better off just switching it to the lowest setting, where it hits a far more manageable 68.5db – which isn’t too far off the Quiet model.

Conclusion

It’s not without its faults, but despite this the Honeywell 5500RE remains a decent fan at a respectable price. It’s powerful, pretty discreet for something so large and ticks the majority of the boxes of what you should look for in a tower fan. The payoff is that it’s loud, has somewhat limited rotation, and might frustrate light sleepers due to some pretty baffling design features. If you really want something for during the day, and don’t care too much about noise you won’t regret picking the Honeywell HO-5500RE. Check out our Best tower fans 2016 to see all our other award-winners. 

Hardware
Dimensions 1,035x305x305mm
Weight 4.5kg
Air movement angle 68 degrees
Rotation angle 55 degrees
Cord length 1.8m
Remote Yes
Intensity levels 1-3
Extra features Night mode, Breeze mode, timer
Power and capacity
Power (adjacent) 5.1m/s
Power (1m) 2.2m/s
Power (2m) 1.2m/s
Volume (Full power) – Next to/2m away 79.1db / 50.5db
Volume (Night mode) 68.5db / 41db
Buying information
Warranty 3 year RTB
Part Code HO-5500RE

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