4 Best Portable Air Conditioners

4 Best Portable Air Conditioners

Best Portable Air Conditioner Overall
#1
Whynter ARC-14SH 14000BTU Portable Air Conditioner
  • Unit works great 
  • Largest room capacity at the price range
  • Quieter than expected 

 

Best Quiet Portable Air Conditioner
#2
Haier HPC12XCR 12000BTU Portable Air Conditioner
  • Unit works fantastically 
  • Cools room quickly 
  • Good quality and easy to install 

 

Best Portable Air Conditioner for Small Spaces
#3
BLACK+DECKER BPACT12WT 12000BTU Portable Air Conditioner
  • A compact, fairly inexpensive solution for cooling smaller spaces
  • Reliable, versatile, and beautifully portable
  • Cools down your room very quickly
Best Portable Air Conditioner with Dehumidifier
#4
Honeywell MN12CES 12000BTU Portable Air Conditioner
  • Fantastic at cooling 
  • Way quieter than expected 
  • Not a drain on electricity 

 

After 28 hours of research evaluating 60 products, we picked Whynter ARC-14SH 14000BTU Portable Air Conditioner as our top choice.

Since not all homes, apartments, and offices are connected to super pimp central heating and cooling systems, finding the best portable air conditioner possible can make life a lot more comfortable.

But, finding the right unit for your space can be tricky; a highly-rated portable ac will provide significant cooling capacity without hogging too much energy. They will also run fairly quietly.

And, if you want to be sure your portable AC can handle your space, don't just look at the BTUs - also look at the specs recommended by the manufacturer. They don't always match as well as you think they should.

Not sure which to choose? We found the best portable air conditioner for every situation, so peruse our picks and pick the one that matches your needs the closest.

These highly rated "small air conditioner" units not only perform well but also provide a steady amount of cool air that will allow you to sip your lemonade without breaking a sweat.


Editorial staff

4 Best Portable Air Conditioners

4 Best Portable Air Conditioners

Read Video Infographic Tips

After 28 hours of research evaluating 60 products, we picked Whynter ARC-14SH 14000BTU Portable Air Conditioner as our top choice.

Since not all homes, apartments, and offices are connected to super pimp central heating and cooling systems, finding the best portable air conditioner possible can make life a lot more comfortable.

But, finding the right unit for your space can be tricky; a highly-rated portable ac will provide significant cooling capacity without hogging too much energy. They will also run fairly quietly.

And, if you want to be sure your portable AC can handle your space, don't just look at the BTUs - also look at the specs recommended by the manufacturer. They don't always match as well as you think they should.

Not sure which to choose? We found the best portable air conditioner for every situation, so peruse our picks and pick the one that matches your needs the closest.

These highly rated "small air conditioner" units not only perform well but also provide a steady amount of cool air that will allow you to sip your lemonade without breaking a sweat.


Editorial staff

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$100 Amazon Gift Card


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Best Portable Air Conditioner with Dehumidifier

75
Score 75
$500
32 Bought | Save: $50 (9% OFF)

Why People Love it

  • Fantastic at cooling 
  • Way quieter than expected 
  • Not a drain on electricity 

 

This is a wonderfully efficient and energy-friendly portable air conditioner. It features an auto-evaporation system and can handle a 450 sq. ft. space. 

It’s not as cheap as you might like and a few users have reported issues with the casters. 

Details

This isn’t the quietest portable air conditioner, but it’s far from the loudest. And, it can handle a decent amount of space too. It does work with a single hose system, but it offers an auto-evaporation system so you’re not lugging buckets of water to the sink. Additionally, the 3M electrostatic filter is washable for cleaner air.

Now, we need to warn you about the dehumidifying capability of this (relatively) good-looking machine; it’s not great compared to others that can manage this amount of space. It does 70 pints per day, but you do get a few extra features such as feather touch controls and both sleep and energy-saving modes. Not bad, right?

Room size: 450 sq. ft.

Power: 12,000 BTU

Maximum airflow: 163 CFM

Single or dual hose: Single

Fan operation: Yes, 3-speeds.

Dehumidifier: Yes, 70 pints/day.

Noise level: 53 dB

Display: Digital LED display and feather-touch controls.

Sleep mode or timer: Yes, with a 24-hour energy saving programmable timer.

Remote: Yes

Weight: 68.3 lbs

Price: You should expect to pay around $500 for this air conditioner – give or take $20, depending on the time of year.

Best Portable Air Conditioner for Small Spaces

75
Score 75
$300
29 Bought | Save: $100 (25% OFF)

Why People Love it

  • A compact, fairly inexpensive solution for cooling smaller spaces
  • Reliable, versatile, and beautifully portable
  • Cools down your room very quickly

Built for smaller rooms, this 12,000 BTU cooling unit is designed for rooms up to 300 square feet, and offers easily programmed settings, a bucketless design, a slide-out filter for easy cleaning, and a window kit included for in-window installation.

Compressor makes the unit fairly noisy, and the hose/drainage system is prone to leaking.

Details

Although this is a single hose model, it’s rather effective and you hardly need to drain this portable air conditioner. Now, it is a compact model – it can only handle a small space compared to other units available—but it does a great job of cooling small rooms. Some users quoted “10 minutes to cool” for a 100-200 square foot space.

We need to warn you that it is on the loud side, or at least the compressor is. The fan delivers quiet operation, but prepare for lots of noise when the compressor gets working. It offers a combination of fan, cooling, and dehumidifying to help you keep your home nice and fresh. It’s even built for easy cleaning, thanks to the slide out, sink-washable filter.  

Room size: 200-300 sq. ft.

Power: 12,000 BTU

Single or dual hose: Single

Fan operation: Yes, 2-speed with adjustable louvers.

Display: LED display

Sleep mode or timer: Yes, the unit comes with both a 24-hour on/off timer and built-in sleep mode.

Remote: Yes

Weight: 53 pounds

Price: The MSRP is about $400, but you should be able to find it closer to $300 most of the time.

Best Quiet Portable Air Conditioner

84
Score 84
$337
53 Bought | Save: $33 (9% OFF)

Why People Love it

  • Unit works fantastically 
  • Cools room quickly 
  • Good quality and easy to install 

 

This portable AC can cool up to 450 sq. ft. and dehumidify up to 100 pints per day. It’s also one of the quietest machines available (and at a good price).

It’s not necessarily the most energy efficient machine and some people still feel it is too loud. 

Details

There is a lot to like with this portable AC. It cools a fair amount of space and it does so quickly. Additionally, the setup is easy enough to get it going fast, though it is a little on the heavier side. It’s low-decibel operation and high capacity dehumidifier makes people fall in love with it.

Now, it is a single hose system, but you shouldn’t expect to empty the water reservoir constantly. Sadly, it doesn’t offer a sleep mode, but there is a 24-hour sleep timer and the remote (although basic in appearance) does offer full functionality. Indeed, this is one snappy little machine and a great option for those living in apartments without built-in air conditioning. Get it while it’s on sale and you won’t be disappointed.

Room size: 450 sq. ft.

Power: 12,000 BTU

Maximum airflow: 188 CFM

Single or dual hose: Single

Fan operation: Yes, 3-speeds.

Dehumidifier: Yes, 100 pints/day.

Noise level: 49 dB

Display: Blue LCD display

Sleep mode or timer: It doesn’t have a sleep mode, but it does offer a 24-hour timer.

Remote: Yes, with full function that operates anywhere in the room.

Weight: 74.8 lbs

Price: You will likely pay between $385 and $400 for this portable AC.

Best Portable Air Conditioner Overall

92
Score 92
$494
36 Bought | Save: $106 (18% OFF)

Why People Love it

  • Unit works great 
  • Largest room capacity at the price range
  • Quieter than expected 

 

This dual-hose portable air conditioner also works as a fan, a dehumidifier, and a heater. A window kit is included and it has an adjustable thermostat. 

It is loud. Some people find it unbearably loud. And, there are those that have felt the need to modify this bad boy to make it work effortlessly for them. 

Details

Designed for larger spaces, this portable air conditioner is also a strong option for apartment dwellers whose landlords refuse to turn on the heat until it’s nippy enough to run out and buy an extra space heater. Of course, it also handles humidity and operates as a fan. Indeed, the dehumidifier is one of the strongest with the ability to process 101 pints per day. But, unless you fit into any of those categories, this isn't the unit for you. 

We appreciate the washable carbon air filter that comes with it – and the ability to set the desired temperature between 61º and 89ºF (as if you need that sort of a range). But, there are a few drawbacks to this puppy. It’s louder than we would like. And, although there are window kits, some users have had to modify this machine to make it work the way they want it to. That said, it’s really rather good at managing extreme heats and low voltages.

Room size: 700 sq.ft.

Power: 14,000 BTU

Maximum airflow: 212 CFM

Single or dual hose: Dual

Fan operation: Yes, 3 speeds.

Dehumidifier: Yes, 101 pints/day.

Noise level: 56 dB

Display: Digital display for precise temperature control

Sleep mode or timer: No specific sleep mode, but there is a 24-hour programmable timer.

Remote: Yes with better than average functionality.

Weight: 80 lbs

Price: The MSRP is $600, but you’ll be able to find it for as low as $450 on Amazon.

Editor: Fashion & Grooming, Home & Office, Food & Drink

Katie’s Cleveland proud; but she’s also lived in Australia, Switzerland and now stays in South Africa. That’s a roundabout way of saying she can’t sit still; she’s always moving, always busy.

She has a BA in International Relations from Kent State University and work towards a Masters in Human Rights. She speaks French, is learning German and used to dream in Spanish. For years, Katie worked as a producer on fashion and advertising shoots before she realized her passion was the written word.

Katie’s far more interested in guy’s gear than women’s, except she has a wardrobe brimming with little black dresses. She drinks her beer out of the bottle and is raising her two boys to be better men.

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