|Here’s a little more info and background about your Lakewood Country Aire 20” Deluxe Window Fan. As Duane informed you, it has a Redmond motor, manufactured by Redmond Electric in Owosso Michigan. Great motor, in my opinion.
You do have the model number correct: BTR720-3. In Lakewood terminology of the time, this decodes as follows:
B- Mounted Window Fan (an added “C” would have noted a “Convertible” Box type fan)
7- Blade Type
20- 20 inch Blade
3- 3 speeds
So, as you see and the model number notes, it has three speeds, is electrically reversible, and has a thermostat (and a pilot light). The thermostat is meant to be set at a temp that you want the fan to shut off at. The numbers don’t relate to an exact temp, they just kind of are a random guide. Find one close to the temp you want the fan to shut off at and it will do so when set. The red light is a “pilot light” that comes on when the thermostat has turned the fan off to remind you that it is still on (I guess so you don’t shut a window behind it, or close a curtain, etc.) When these fans were originally sold, most folks used them at night as exhaust fans to pull cool air through opposing windows throughout the house. With a thermostat, you could set it and make sure the house didn’t get too cold over the course of the evening.
The fan itself was manufactured by Lakewood Engineering and Manufacturing of Chicago, Illinois. That particular model was made from late 1955- 1961. Your fan is one of the earlier ones, made in 1955-’56, as it has a round pilot light. In 1957, they changed to a square light. In 1962 they changed the fan and the model number, on deluxe window fans going exlusivey from the surround snap on grill to a box design with a grill similar to those found on their box fans.
You can determine if your fan was one of the earliest models (made in 1955 or early 1956) by looking at the brace on the back of the blade. If the three blades have machined holes in the middle of the square brace (where the manufacture would put a small amount of lead to balance the blade), the fan is from late 1956 on. If there are “blobs” of lead just sodered on each brace, it is from the first runs of those blades, 1955- early ‘56.
I have the same identical fan as yours, and similar one made between 1957-60 (it’s my avatar image). I have used the later model every year, on a near daily basis throughout the summer, as an exhaust fan. It has always worked flawlessly.
These were pretty common fans when they were new. Sold at hardware stores, variety stores, furniture stores, WT Grant’s, SS Kresge (predecessor to Kmart), and by J.C Penney (rebadged as “Penney’s”). This was the deluxe model and usually sold for between $33-$40 when new. ($325-$375 in today’s money). It’s not worth a lot now , money wise. Probably bring $75-120 on Ebay depending upon the bidding mood. I think I paid around $100 for each of mine.
These fans perform well (3200 cfm on exhaust- 4800 cfm circulating). Keep the motor oiled and it will likely last and run forever. As Duane noted, do not use detergent oil in it. Use either 3 in 1 from the BLUE can, Zoomspout (my favorite), or something similar that doesn’t have detergent. Detergent ruins bearings.
Lakewood Manufacturing made a variety of fans from 1946-2009. From the mid- 1960s on, they were the largest manufacturer of box and window fans in the world. When they finally closed their doors, they were one of only a handful of companies still producing fans in the USA, and the last to regularly distribute box and window fans with metal blades (same design as what is on your fan).
I’ve attached an ad from 1956 with a similar fan, with no thermostat. I'll post a couple of other ads with similar fans in following posts.
If you have any further questions about the fan, let me know. It’s a great fan. You got a good deal at $20!
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Last edited on Mon May 28th, 2018 04:35 pm by Don Whipple