13 Best Portable Air Conditioners: Secret Weapon for a Comfy Summer in 2024

Do you need cooling but can’t install central AC? Is your room not suitable for a window AC unit? Are ductless mini-splits too costly for you? If you answered yes to any of these questions, then portable air conditioners might be the solution you’re looking for. As the name goes, these are portable units that can move from one room to another. But with so many products available in the market, how will you know which one is right for you?

This guide will help you.

Our experts have tested 50 different portable air conditioners to shortlist the best ones. 

We have reviewed all the products on the basis of ease of use, installation requirements, cooling performance, and energy efficiency. After conducting a month-long research, we have finally come up with a detailed review of the 13 best portable air conditioners.

1. Whynter ARC-14S

Whynter ARC 14S 14000 BTU Dual Hose Portable Air Conditioner

Best Rated Portable Air Conditioner

BrandWhynter
Product Dimensions16″D x 19″W x 35.5″H
Capacity500 Cubic Feet
Cooling Power14000 BTU
ColorPlatinum/Black
Weight‎73 Pounds
Noise Level‎ 56 dB

This portable AC from Whynter comes with a powerful dual hose system, which helps cool rooms faster than other portable units. It uses outside air instead of inside air. Our testers were impressed by its versatility all year round. In dehumidifier mode, it removes up to 101 pints of moisture in a day. You can also choose the upgraded model with a heater, heating up to 77°F.

Testers appreciated the programmable timer, allowing you to set it to turn on before you get home. You can check the temperature on the digital display. Although the exhaust hose needs to go out a window, it extends up to five feet, giving you flexibility in placement. The included storage bag adds convenience for storing the unit when not in use.

Pros
  • Offers strong cooling for big spaces
  • Dual hose operation
  • Easy to setup
  • Runs quietly
Cons
  • Window insert is poorly designed

2. BLACK+DECKER BPACT08WT

BLACK DECKER 8000 BTU Portable Air Conditioner

Best Portable Room Air Conditioner

BrandBLACK+DECKER
Product Dimensions16.5″D x 26″W x 11.5″H
Capacity350 Square Feet
Cooling Power8000 BTU
ColorWhite
Weight‎ 45.8 Pounds
Noise Level‎ 54 dB

Consider this unit for cooling your bedroom quietly through the night. It’s quieter than other portable air conditioners and weighs just 45.8 pounds, making it lighter than most. However, its quieter operation and compact size mean it has a slightly less powerful fan, resulting in slower air speeds compared to other models.

This choice is suitable for smaller spaces like offices, apartments, or small bedrooms. The filter slides out from the back for easy cleaning. Also, the remote control included allows you to adjust settings without interrupting your work or getting out of bed.

Pros
  • Simple to clean and maintain
  • Lightweight design
  • Auto water evaporation
  • Side handles offers easy mobility
Cons
  • Fan is not as strong

3. LG ‎LP0621WSR

LG LP0621WSR Portable Air Conditioner

Best Portable Air Conditioner with WiFi

BrandLG
Product Dimensions13.27″D x 17.32″W x 27.36″H
Capacity250 Square Feet
Cooling Power6000 BTU
ColorWhite
Weight‎‎54.2 Pounds
Noise Level‎53 dB

During our testing of the brand’s 6,000 BTU unit, our engineers discovered it to be relatively quiet for its size and easy to move around. With the built-in WiFi feature, you can control your cooling remotely, allowing you to prepare the room before you enter. Alternatively, you can use an Amazon Alexa or Google Assistant device for added flexibility and convenience.

We appreciate the ability to switch between fan mode, cool mode, or dry mode. You can adjust the environment based on the weather conditions. The controls on the machine are straightforward and user-friendly. While it can produce some of the lowest temperatures among the units we tested, there was a noticeable variation in temperature settings after five minutes during our cooling test.

Pros
  • Adjustable humidity settings
  • Simple controls that are easy to use
  • Compatible with Google Assistant and Alexa
  • Operates quietly
Cons
  • Takes some time to cool down a room

4. De’Longhi PACEX UV-CARELIGH

DeLonghi PACEX UV CARELIGH Portable Air Conditioner

Best Portable Air Conditioner for Large Rooms

BrandDe’Longhi
Product Dimensions15.4″D x 17.5″W x 31.7″H
Capacity700 Square Feet
Cooling Power8600 BTU
ColorWhite
Weight‎83.3 Pounds
Noise Level‎53 dB

If you’re looking to cool down a large space, such as a great room or a big studio apartment, this De’Longhi is an excellent choice. With its impressive 700-square-foot cooling capacity, it is best for big rooms. While it does produce some noise at full power, the quiet mode setting reduces the noise by half. During our testing, we found this to be one of the quieter ACs, even without using the quiet mode.

Our experts also appreciate the washable filter screen, making it a good option for those with allergies. Keep in mind that this model may use slightly more energy than some of our other recommendations.

Pros
  • Excellent cooling performance
  • Washable filter screen
  • Optional quiet mode
  • Programmable timer
Cons
  • Uses more energy

5. Frigidaire FHPH142AC1

Frigidaire FHPH142AC1 Portable Air Conditioner

Best Portable Air Conditioner for Bedroom

BrandFrigidaire
Product Dimensions16.54″D x 19.4″W x 31.34″H
Capacity700 Square Feet
Cooling Power14000 BTU
ColorWhite
Weight‎82 Pounds
Noise Level‎49 dB

The Frigidaire FHPH142AC1 impressed us by keeping the room consistently cool within a half-degree. Its surprisingly quiet operation makes it perfect for bedrooms. While it may not be as efficient as an inverter model, this single-hose Frigidaire AC is still powerful and almost as quiet.

Additionally, this Frigidaire model can also provide heating during colder months. However, the window-panel kit is not as sturdy as those of its competitors. This made the installation process a bit more challenging during our tests.

Pros
  • 3-in-one operation
  • Built-in air ionizer
  • Remote control and programmable timer
  • Quite operation with sleep mode
Cons
  • Installation is a bit complex

6. Whynter Elite ARC-122DS

Whynter Elite ARC 122DS Portable Air Conditioner

Best Dual Hose Portable Air Conditioner

BrandWhynter
Product Dimensions16″D x 17″W x 29.5″H
Capacity400 Square Feet
Cooling Power7000 BTU
ColorGray
Weight‎‎68 Pounds
Noise Level‎‎52 dB

The Whynter Elite offers impressive cooling power at an affordable price, making it a top choice among portable air conditioners. During our tests, it efficiently cooled a room from 81°F to around 61°F within about 20 minutes. While not the fastest, it’s remarkable performance considering its price.

This Whynter portable AC is well-built and features the best filter system among its competitors. Unlike other models with large and flimsy filters, this one is sturdy. It’s also compact and easy to move and store, although taller individuals may find its size somewhat inconvenient.

Pros
  • Dual hose operation
  • Patented auto drain function
  • Washable pre-filter
  • Multiple setting options
Cons
  • No side handles

7. Frigidaire FHPC082AC1

Frigidaire FHPC082AC1 Portable Air Conditioner

Best Small Portable Air Conditioner

BrandFrigidaire
Product Dimensions12.17″D x 13.78″W x 26.8″H
Capacity200 Square Feet
Cooling Power5500 BTU
ColorWhite
Weight‎52 Pounds
Noise Level‎50 dB

This Frigidaire portable AC delivers average cooling performance—neither exceptional nor concerning. However, it stands out for its compact and narrow design, making it perfect for smaller spaces. This AC also has a programmable timer and remote control, which makes it very easy to use. Also, the automatic restart feature helps you to start it from the same setting. 

When it comes to noise, this Frigidaire unit is louder than average, ranging up to 50 dBBA on higher fan settings. But you can use the sleep mode to keep the noise low. Overall, it is one of the best portable air conditioners for small rooms.

Pros
  • Offers decent cooling
  • Easy to install 
  • Comes with washable filter
  • Works as a dehumidifier
Cons
  • Not for big spaces

8. ZAFRO ‎A4213-8K

ZAFRO _A4213 8K Portable Air Conditioner

Best Affordable Portable Air Conditioner

BrandZAFRO
Product Dimensions11″D x 11″W x 27″H
Capacity350 Square Feet
Cooling Power8000 BTU
Color‎White
Weight‎‎51.7 Pounds
Noise Levels‎‎54 dB

We tested the ZAFRO 8,000 BTU portable air conditioner, and it efficiently cools rooms up to 350 square feet, providing stable and fast cooling. With its 3-in-1 modes and user-friendly digital display and remote, it’s easy to operate. 

The washable air filter helps maintain clean air quality, although it’s recommended to clean it every two weeks. Installation is straightforward, and the unit is easy to move around, thanks to its compact size and caster wheels. Ideal for bedrooms, kitchens, offices, living rooms, and dorms, this portable AC offers convenience and comfort.  

Pros
  • Fast cooling
  • Sleep mode for low noise
  • Easy to move
  • Affordable price
Cons
  • Poor condensation drainage design

9. Hessaire MC37M

Hessaire MC37M Portable Air Conditioner

Best Portable Air Conditioner without Hose

BrandHessaire
Product Dimensions24″L x 16″W x 38″H
Capacity950 Square Feet
Cooling Power3100 CFM
ColorGray
Weight‎39 Pounds
Noise Levels‎59 dB

Portable air conditioners without a hose often work as a cooler. The Hessaire MC37M is the best-selling large ventless cooler. The MC37M delivers an impressive 3,100 CFM airflow and cooling areas of up to 950 square feet. In comparison, other ventless units typically offer only 200 or 300 CFM. Hessaire prioritizes creating a highly efficient ventless AC-like unit with powerful airflow.

While high airflow units often produce loud noise, the MC37M is well-designed, emitting only 59 dB of noise. However, the powerful MC37M consumes more energy than low airflow units, requiring 250W. While less than traditional vented AC units, it’s more than 200 CFM coolers. 

Pros
  • Produces 3,100 CFM airflow
  • Operates quietly
  • Affordable considering its quality
  • Best large ventless cooler
Cons
  • Uses slightly more electricity

10. Midea Duo MAP14HS1TBL

Midea Duo MAP14HS1TBL Portable Air Conditioner

Best Low Noise Portable Air Conditioner 

BrandMidea
Product Dimensions16.73″D x 19.53″W x 34.48″H
Capacity450 Square Feet
Cooling Power12000 BTU
ColorBlack
Weight‎72.8 Pounds
Noise Level‎42 dB

This is one of the fastest portable air conditioners we’ve tested. Within seconds of setting it to cool, it starts blowing cold air. It’s also versatile, with settings for dry, cool, fan, and heat. The Auto setting adjusts the appliance from cooling to heating to fan based on the temperature in the room and your desired setting.

The Midea’s outlet can be fixed or set to oscillate automatically. You can also adjust its swing for more horizontal or vertical airflow. The best part, however, is its quiet operation. Producing only 42 dB of noise, it is one of the quietest portable air conditioners. Overall, we liked everything about the Midea, except for its short hose.

Pros
  • Saves more than 40% energy
  • Faster and stronger cooling
  • Smart app control
  • Very quiet operation
Cons
  • It is very heavy

11. Oushome Portable Air Conditioner Fan

Oushome Fan Portable Air Conditioner

Best Portable Car Air Conditioner

Brand‎Oushome
Product Dimensions‎5.51″D x 5.51″W x 8.6″H
Capacity14 Hours 
Cooling Power4000mAH Battery
Color‎White
Weight‎ ‎2.4 Pounds
Noise Level‎ ‎50 dB

Our experts found the Oushome portable air conditioner fan to be the perfect solution for cooling in cars. Its compact size and portable design make it easy to use anywhere. With its 4-in-1 functionality, it acts as a humidifier, fan, and air conditioner all in one. The 3-speed settings and 90°/360° oscillation ensure customizable cooling for any situation. 

The large water tank and option to add ice cubes provide efficient cooling, even in hot conditions. Additionally, the quiet operation and long-lasting battery make it ideal for use during sleep or long drives. The USB charging capability adds to its convenience, allowing it to be powered by various devices. However, the product needs careful handling as it is not sturdy enough.

Pros
  • Suitable for personal cooling needs
  • Auto oscillation improves airflow distribution
  • Lightweight and easy to use
  • USB Type-C charging
Cons
  • Needs careful handling 

12. Costway EP24619US

Costway EP24619US Portable Air Conditioner

Best Multi-Purpose Portable Air Conditioner

BrandCostway
Product Dimensions14.5″D x 13″W x 25″H
Capacity250 Square Feet
Cooling Power8000 BTU
ColorWhite
Weight‎51.4 Pounds
Noise Level‎56 dB

Our experts found the COSTWAY Portable Air Conditioner to be a reliable solution for cooling spaces up to 230 sq. ft. With its 8,000 BTU cooling capacity, it quickly cools down the area, making it ideal for large and open spaces. The wide oscillation feature provides horizontal and vertical airflow, ensuring thorough cooling.

This air conditioner offers three modes: fan, dehumidifying, and cooling, providing customizable comfort. The sleep mode and low noise level ensure a peaceful sleeping environment. Additionally, the timer function allows for convenient scheduling.

Pros
  • Wide oscillation
  • 3 modes to choose from
  • Easy to operate and install
  • Longer service life
Cons
  • Poor hose

13. GE APFD06JASW

GE APFD06JASW Portable Air Conditioner

Best Air Conditioner Portable for Small Rooms

BrandWhynter
Product Dimensions13.3″D x 13.9″W x 27.5″H
Capacity250 Square Feet
Cooling Power6100 BTU
ColorWhite
Weight‎49.7 Pounds
Noise Level‎52 dB

The GE portable AC offers good cooling power at a lower price compared to other models we tested. This 3-in-1 portable air conditioner offers built-in air conditioning, two fan speeds, and dehumidifying capabilities, providing flexible and optimal home comfort. Digital controls with a remote make it easy to manage settings from anywhere in the room. 

However, it’s not the most portable unit we tested. The handles on its sides are a bit shallow, making it hard to grip. Additionally, its size and wheel placement can make it challenging to move, especially on carpet.

Pros
  • Easy to use
  • Auto evaporation technology
  • Digital controls with remote
  • Lightweight 
Cons
  • Doesn’t show real-time temperature

How We Tested These Portable Air Conditioners?

In our testing process, each portable air conditioner underwent the same series of tests to evaluate both its performance and user-friendliness.

To gauge performance, we conducted a cooling test in a 200-square-foot chamber equipped with temperature sensors placed strategically around the room. 

After heating the room with a space heater, we ran each unit for two hours, recording measurements every minute. This allowed us to assess how quickly each air conditioner could cool the room and how effectively it distributed the cooled air.

In addition to performance, we assessed the usability of each unit, noting any differences in control layout and ease of setup and operation. 

Factors to Consider When Buying Portable Air Conditioners

Here are some important factors you must consider when choosing portable air conditioners:

Cooling Capacity

Portable ACs are rated based on their cooling capacity, measured either in total square footage or British Thermal Units (BTUs). 

BTUs may seem confusing, but remember, higher numbers mean more power. Typically, an 8,000 BTU unit cools up to 350 square feet. 

Make sure the AC’s power matches your room size. If your room is bigger, you need a more powerful AC.

Energy Efficiency

Pick ACs with an ENERGY STAR label. These ones save more electricity and help lower your energy bills. Also, consider smart ACs that you can control with your phone for extra convenience and savings.

Size and Position

When buying a portable air conditioner, make sure it fits near a window with enough space around it to function properly. While cooling power is crucial, avoid purchasing a unit that’s too big for your space.

Portability

While all portable air conditioners can be moved, not all are equally easy to transport. If you plan to move the unit between rooms, look for models with wheels. Also, consider the unit’s weight, especially if you’ll be carrying it up and down stairs.

Noise Level

Air conditioners can be noisy due to the motor and fan. While some may tolerate the noise for relief from the heat, others prefer quieter operation, especially when used frequently. Before choosing, check reviews for comments on noise levels.

Timer and Remote

Many portable ACs include a timer, allowing you to schedule when it turns on/off. This feature is beneficial for maintaining a comfortable temperature and saving energy costs.

FAQs

How do portable air conditioners work?

Portable air conditioners work by using heat and humidity from the air inside a room. They cool it down using a refrigerant to make the room cold. Also, they blow away the heat and moisture outside through an exhaust hose.

What type of portable air conditioner is best?

The best type of portable air conditioner depends on individual needs. Our guide will help you determine which one is best for you. 

How powerful are portable air conditioners?

Portable air conditioners differ in power. It can range from 8,000 to 14,000 BTUs (British Thermal Units). The higher the BTU, the more powerful the unit is. Top of Form

Are portable air conditioners as good as window units?

Portable air conditioners offer flexibility but may not be as efficient as window units due to their smaller size and potential for air leakage.

Is it OK to run portable AC all day?

It’s actually safe to use portable air conditioners all day, but remember that it can cause a lot of energy consumption. 

How many BTUs should a portable AC be?

The ideal BTU for a portable AC depends on the size of the room. For a normal-sized room, 8,000 to 14,000 BTU is enough. 

What is the lifespan of a portable air conditioner?

The lifespan of portable air conditioners actually is between 5 and 10 years. It depends on the usage and maintenance.

Conclusion

And that’s a wrap! These are the 13 most powerful portable air conditioners to choose from. Now, you have plenty of options to select the right unit as per your requirements. 

Whether you need one for a small room or your car, there are choices for everyone. These portable air conditioners are carefully shortlisted after days of research and promise to deliver the best performance. Top of Form

Explore Further

Iram Shaikh
Iram Shaikhhttps://architecturesideas.com/
I Am Iram! and I'm not your typical writer. I find my inspiration in the pages of a good book and the thrill of discovering new places. Over the years, I've honed my skills in content creation, specializing in crafting engaging and traffic-driving content. When I'm not at my desk, I'm out exploring, seeking out hidden gems, and sharing my adventures with fellow travelers. Join me on this journey of words and wanderlust, where every story is an opportunity to explore and dream.

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