Well folks we’re barely into June and it is nearly already too hot to bare. Over here in Kansas City we have had temperatures in the high nineties for the past two weeks. It has not been a fun time, let me tell you. As I’m writing this article it is late on a Sunday night and the temperatures have begun to cool but earlier this same day I was out mowing my acreage and sweating up a storm while I was doing it. After the yard was done and everything looked good I retreated back indoors to my nice cool home.
Now I don’t care where you are in the country there is nothing like coming inside from a hot summer’s day and feeling the nice cold air of your home air conditioner. I’ve never been one to deal with heat well and the air conditioner that I have installed in my home make sure I stay nice and comfortable. In my home I use the traditional central air system that most homes come with nowadays, but what do you do if you run into a scenario where a central air system just isn’t a possibility?
There are many people who do not have access to a central air system for a variety of reasons. The question now is what alternative solution is there? What can these people do? There are two quick and easy fixes to cool your room: Window and Portable Air Conditioners. Now, in this article I’m not going to dive into portable but instead we are going to review one specific window air conditioner: Frigidaire’s FRA052XT7 5,000 BTU. This product is perfectly sized to cool your small room or office. In fact, a lot of people use this unit to keep their bedrooms cool during the night. After all, there is nothing worse then waking up in the middle of the night sweating. It’s just not comfortable and, at least for me, it makes it difficult to sleep.
In this post we’re going to take an in-depth look at Frigidaire’s FRA052Xt7 and determine if it is the right product for your or if you should be looking elsewhere. Let’s dive in and take a look!
When I am writing a review I never get into the Pros and Cons until I have successfully researched the company and the brand name. After all, the brand name has a huge amount of power and respect to it. If you doubt me just look at the brand name Coca-Cola. Everyone knows what that is and everyone knows what to expect. They know the quality, the flavor, and everything else about it. The same qualities of a brand name can be carried over to other products, in this case window air conditioners.
The Frigidaire brand and company were in fact one of my runner ups in my best brands article for window air conditioners. Chances are you have already heard of the Frigidaire brand name. In fact, if I was a betting man I’d bet that you already have a Frigidaire appliance in your home. It could be a refrigerator, a dishwasher, a washer/dryer, or even your microwave. My point here folks is that this company is all over your home and can be trusted with quality products.
When it comes to window air conditioners Frigidaire could be considered one of the experts in the industry. Why? Well they have been around for over one-hundred years and in fact were one of the original innovators of the air conditioning and refrigeration industry. Back in 1916 the Frigidaire company invented and also began selling one of the first self-contained refrigerator. What that meant was they were one of the first companies in the world to bring refrigerators to people’s homes. That’s a big deal. The Frigidaire company has a solid track record on all appliances and I can assure you that the Frigidaire brand name is top notch.
Let me start this section off with saying that this Frigidaire unit is meant as a very basic entry level window air conditioner. That means that the price point is low but also so are the amount of features and benefits. First and foremost, yes, this will cool your room. But now, we need to look at what this product offers and if it is a good fit for you.
The first thing we should look at when dealing with window air conditioners are how many BTUs, or British Thermal Units, the product has. When dealing with air conditioning BTUs are a measurement of cooling capacity of your unit. The higher the number or BTUs the more power and the more ability your product will have to cool a room. However, that doesn’t mean just go big and go home. If you buy a unit that is too large for your desired area then you will be wasting electricity and will also end up with hot and cold spots around the room. If you buy a unit that is too small for your area then your product will be working overtime running up your energy bills and it will struggle to cool the room. The room you want to cool and the BTUs should be a perfect fit. The standard that is used throughout the industry is about thirty BTUs for each square foot of living area. So, in this case if we look at the five-thousand BTUs the FRA052Xt7 offers we can see that it is rated to cool rooms at around one-hundred and fifty square feet. That is about the size of your standard bedroom.
As I said above this unit is not going to come with a lot of bells and whistles. Instead you are going to get two turn dial knobs. The first is to control the cooling temperature and the second is to control the fan. You cannot set a specific temperature with this unit and there is not a digital display or a remote. If you are looking for something like that then I would suggest you purchase the Friedrich CP05G10B. You’re going to pay more for the Friedrich, but you get the extra features.
Remember that old adage our fathers always told us? Measure twice, cut once? Well, the same thing applies here for window units. The absolute worst thing you can do is to purchase a new unit without measuring your window. Just imagine buying it, having it arrive, and then going to install it only to find that it won’t fit… and at the same time you’re realizing this your wife is looking over your shoulder telling you that you should have read the directions. (That’s never happened to me, promise.) The FRA052Xt7 can fit in windows between twenty-three inches upwards to thirty-six inches in width. If your window is smaller then twenty-three inches then this product will not work for you. Most windows are taller or right about fourteen inches, but also please check this as well to ensure you get the right fit.
This Frigidaire product comes with a one-hundred and fifteen volt plug-in. This is your standard plug-in that you can find anywhere in your home. Now, you may be asking why I am mentioning this, but trust me, there is a reason. Depending on the size of the window air conditioner you purchase you may run into units sporting a two-hundred and twenty volt plug-in. (Think your oven or dryer plug-in.) Obviously, this can pose a problem if you buy a two-hundred and twenty volt and not realize it. Luckily, with this product we have a one-hundred and fifteen volt plug-in so there is nothing to worry about. Also, the air conditioner comes with a six and a half foot cord so you should be able to reach your nearest outlet without too much difficulty.
FRA052Xt7 uses the very popular HFC R-410A refrigerant. 410A is the gold standard right now when it comes to home air conditioning. Nearly all new air conditioners here in the United States are using R-410A. Down the road if your unit needed to be recharged with 410A the price tag wouldn’t be too bad as 410A is running around one-hundred dollars for a twenty-five pound cylinder and your unit would only need a couple of pounds of refrigerant for a charge.
The last product feature that I’m going to mention before we move onto the Pros section is installation. Since this is a smaller unit the install should be fairly straight-forward and easy. It is when you get to the higher BTUs that things become difficult. This particular product only weights about thirty-five pounds which means you very well could install this with just one person, but it may still be tricky as you have to hold the unit in place while also securing it. If you slip then the unit could fall out your window and break on you. Be careful!
Well folks the best and most important Pro on this product is the price. It is very rare nowadays to find a quality air conditioner for a decent price. Most of the time if you are in the market to purchase a window unit you are looking for a cheaper solution. You’re not looking to spend five-hundred or even a thousand dollars. Instead, you’re looking for a well priced product that will cool your room. I can assure you that the Frigidaire FRA052Xt7 is just that. You get the cooling capacity as well as a very low price.
Along with the low price point you also get a one year manufacturer warranty. This warranty will ensure you that if your product does fail within the first year that your investment is insured and that you will either get a replacement part or a replacement unit. While some other more expensive units have a two or even three year warranty again we have to realize that the FRA052Xt7 is a budget window air conditioner.
This product has seven different cool modes that can be switched back and forth with the turn of the dial. You also get a second control dial that allows you to change the speed of the fan. The vents can blow air in one of two directions and in the event of a power outage the unit will automatically restart itself when your power comes back on. This saves you the hassle of having to wake up to a hot room after only having your power out for a few minutes.
The last Pro I’ve already mentioned above in the Product Features section but I’m going to bring up again here. This unit is considered a ‘micro window air conditioner.’ What that means is that it is very small. It comes in at just around thirty-five pounds. That means that it is easily shipped and easier to install. As you get into the larger BTU air conditioners the size and weight go up as well. These larger units can be a beast to install but with this lighter weight unit the install should be a breeze.
The Cons section is always a little difficult especially when you are dealing with a well built product from Frigidaire. But, like with anything there are always flaws. The first and most obvious is that this unit is only rated at five-thousand BTUs. That means that if you’re trying to cool a master bedroom, living room, or any other larger space then this unit will most likely not work for you. You would need to calculate the square footage of your room and then go up a size in BTUs until you find the perfect fit. The five-thousand BTU units are strictly meant for bedrooms and small offices. If you’re not sure exactly what size of air conditioner to get please check out our buyer’s guide by clicking here.
When you purchase something online there is always the risk of it arriving to your home damaged. That risk increases with the bigger and heavier the package. On top of that, the risk increases even more when dealing with a machine like an air conditioner. Now, I’m not going to lie to you here. The chances of your unit arriving damaged is rare, but there is a chance folks. The good news though is that if this does happen you can always file a claim with Amazon.com and they will take care of the return process. Something that you’ll notice is that some of the ‘bad reviews,’ on this product are a direct result of the product arriving damaged to the consumer’s home. This is not Frigidaire’s fault and frankly shouldn’t be attributed to them.
One thing worth mentioning here is that this Frigidaire product is NOT Energy Star certified with the Environmental Protection Agency. The Energy Star program is a system to measure how efficient an air conditioner is. They use a number based off of the Energy Efficiency Ratio, or EER. The higher the EER number the more efficient and the less energy the product will cost. The baseline to achieve the Energy Star certification is 10.0 and this Frigidaire unit comes in at 9.7. So, while it does not meet the Energy Star requirements it just barely misses them at that 9.7 number.
The last Con I’ll mention before moving onto our conclusion is that in some cases over time the fan can become loosened within the unit. While this doesn’t pose a safety or performance risk it can cause your air conditioner to become noisier then it once was. For some people this doesn’t bother them in the slightest, but for others it can drive them crazy. If it was me I can tell you that I wouldn’t even notice it, but I’m heavy sleeper and I’m also the kind of guy who gets used to his surroundings. So, if I have a new fan in my room going all night I might not sleep well for the first few nights but then something clicks and that fan becomes part of the sleeping experience.
Alright folks, we have gone over all of the product features on this Frigidaire product, the Pros, the Cons, and anything and everything else in between. The question now is this the product that is right for you? Well, I would say that if you are looking for a cheaper window air conditioner to cool your bedroom, dorm room, or small office then this is the exact product for you.
However, if you find that this isn’t the product for you for whatever reason then let me take some time here to suggest to you a few alternative five-thousand BTU models.
- Frigidaire FFRE0533Q1 5,000 BTU comes with a digital display and a remote control.
- hOmeLabs 5,000 BTU is a sister product to our featured Frigidaire product. This unit has a lot of the same features as the FRA052Xt7 but for a little bit of a cheaper price.
- Friedrich CP05G10B 5,200 BTU is the premium, or the best of the best, when it comes to window air conditioners. Sure, you’re going to pay some more but you are getting a top quality product with all of the bells and whistles. This is a must buy in my opinion.