A couple of weeks back I got my first smart air conditioner in the form of the Midea U Inverter 12,000 BTU Smart Window AC, the cooling part’s been cool… let’s take a look at all the things that have happened in the smart part.
Update at 2 years (6/25/2022) – fan squeaks now. Sort of sounds like a cricket. No longer whisper quiet and kind of annoying. Most of the back end problems listed below were resolved at some point over the last two years.
All the irritations
What we have is a failure to communicate
OK, first off, and this is just irking me, there’s something with the unit that if you change the base WiFi router settings it doesn’t pick up that it’s supposed to reinitialize DHCP… it does not pull a new address, unlike literally every other smart device on my network.
Does this affect you? Probably not. Not a lot of people change their WiFi settings as often as I do. But it straight up refuses to DHCP from the WiFi (same SSID). Have to set it up again.
And once it’s got the SSID it refuses to go back into AP mode it appears… rassafrassa…
*update* I had to not only unplug the unit, but unplug it, then turn it on, watch the unit start operating while unplugged until it died, unplugged, then plug it back in. That’s a capacitor for you.
Update on the above at 2 years – last two router changes it’s been fine. Firmware update, something odd with my setup, I do not know.
Unable to reach the Midea service
When logging into the app I’m greeted about one out of four times with that the service isn’t available or I get to wait for a while while the unit connects. This is fixable on the back end and I can tell they’ve been working on some things.
Update at 2 years: Have only seen this once in 2022
It worked yesterday
They’re working on the smart side and I can now ask some questions to a Google Home device such as “what’s the bedroom ac doing” and get that it’s in ECO mode. I can’t find out the temperature, but I can set the temperature. And I can’t seem to disable ECO mode if it’s in it. There’s not a lot of help there.
Some things that worked when I got it no longer seem to function as I believe I was at least able to get the temperature in Celsius, I would set it in Fahrenheit, and I would mentally translate to Kelvin. I can not seem to get the temperature returned any more.
Strange errors and slow support
Last article I mentioned I was getting an error that’s just an error with no explanation. Turning the unit off and on cleared it and it didn’t come back but I wrote into Midea about it. Five days later I got a response asking what unit and to include a screen shot. I did, they wrote back a couple of days later that I needed to call someone to talk to to find out what that error meant.
Uh, no… I just want to know what the error means and not bring a phone call at absurd hours into this.
Just shut your beep hole
I sleep with the thing going pretty hard. Ice cave level. Due to Covid-19 and strange work hours I’m usually the first one up and I want to turn off the ice blast. I go from ice cold to 75, boost to eco, and for some reason every change I make has to be accompanied by the unit beeping loudly that it’s done it.
I don’t need the beeping. Nobody needs the beeping if you’ve done the change via the app.
How is this filter notification working?
A week or so back when I had the strange error in the app I cleaned the filter thinking maybe that was the issue. It wasn’t. One of the thinks the Midea appears to do when you press the check option is to scan the filter… that’s about 60-80% of the animation that it’s checking the filter.
Well, at about week 2.5 it told me the filter needed cleaning… I’d done it the week before and when I pulled the filter out it was still quite clean (I did it anyway). This leads me to suspect the filter scanning doesn’t.
What doesn’t annoy Paul about the Midea U Inverter 12,000 BTU Smart Window AC?
It’s quiet, blows cool, it is nice to be able to put it on a schedule. I think they can fix most of the issues with a firmware update and some more work on the smart side and I’d really dig it. As it stands the DHCP issue just seems like a basic IoT 101 failure.