The hot summer months are upon us, which makes it a good time to have a tower fan on hand. With vertical designs that typically oscillate from side to side, the right tower fan can quickly cast a cooling breeze across an entire room without taking up a lot of space or using too much energy.
Here are our top three picks.
Better Homes & Gardens 5-Speed Tower Fan
Available at Walmart for less than $50, this Better Homes & Gardens-branded tower fan appears to be a reskinned version of a well-rated model from HomeLabs that sells for roughly twice as much on Amazon. Alongside the sleep timer and the three speed settings, you'll find two additional modes that simulate a natural breeze. The remote uses magnetism to stay in place on top of the device when you aren't using it — a nice, high-end touch not commonly found at this price.
The sturdy, understated design features a grill that oscillates within a fixed base, making it less conspicuous than a tower fan that turns entirely from side-to-side.
Dyson Pure Cool TP04 Air Purifying Tower Fan
When it comes to ultra-high-end tower fans, Dyson is tough to beat. This $550 behemoth boasts king-size activated carbon and glass HEPA air filters hugging the base intake. That allows it to purify the air it puts out, removing things like dust and allergens from the air you breathe. Dyson claims it can catch particles as small as 0.3-micron wide. Just know that if it's an air purifier you're after, you can find lots of good options that cost less.
Air filtration aside, the Dyson boasts 10 speed settings ranging from an ultra-quiet 28 decibels up to a 48-decibel blast of concentrated air. It releases a cool, steady stream of air that feels like a much less forceful version of one of Dyson's bathroom hand dryers. An LCD screen on the front of the device tracks air quality in real time, but you can also set it to display things like the ambient room temperature or the relative humidity. You can also customize the oscillation angle between 45-, 90-, 180-, and 350-degree settings, which is a very nice, unique touch. The sleek remote docks magnetically on top of the fan when you aren't using it, too.
Honeywell QuietSet HYF290B Whole Room Tower Fan
This is the quietest fan we tested and also a pretty well-rounded appliance across the board.
The $70 QuietSet is also energy efficient, drawing just 36 watts at full blast. Speaking of settings, the QuietSet offers a whole bunch of them, ranging from a near-silent, 26-decibel Sleep setting and a comfortably quiet, 28-decibel White Noise setting up to Relax, Refresh, Cool and Power Cool settings that move greater masses of air while keeping the noise at bay. The slim, rocket-shaped design is sturdy and relatively compact, the batteries-included remote docks neatly in the back when not in use and the upward-angled controls on top are easy on the eyes. You can customize the brightness of those LED lights on top, too.
The following CNET staff contributed to this story: senior editors Ry Crist and Laura K. Cucullu and copy editor Jim Hoffman. For more reviews of personal technology products, visit cnet.com.