| ||Amana AMAP081AW||Honeywell MF08CESWW||Global Air YPL310C||Black+Decker BPACT10WT||Whynter ARC-14SH||Friedrich P12B||De'Longhi PACAN140ES.WH-3A||Honeywell MM14CHCS|
|Amazon rating|| |
3.5 out of 5 stars
16 customer reviews
3.2 out of 5 stars
207 customer reviews
3.5 out of 5 stars
692 customer reviews
3.7 out of 5 stars
1174 customer reviews
3.5 out of 5 stars
603 customer reviews
3.5 out of 5 stars
199 customer reviews
3.5 out of 5 stars
97 customer reviews
3.4 out of 5 stars
219 customer reviews
11.8 x 15.2 x 24 inches
14.2 x 19.5 x 24.4 inches
17 x 13 x 31.3 inches
16.5 x 11.5 x 26 inches
16 x 19 x 35.5 inches
15.5 x 19.5 x 33.5 inches
15.5 x 17.5 x 29.5 inches
15.7 x 16.5 x 29.3 inches
Platinum & Black
|Recommended Room Size (Up To)|
7,000 sq. ft.
300 sq. ft.
300 – 400 sq. ft.
150 – 250 sq. ft.
500 sq. ft.
228 sq. ft.
600 sq. ft.
550 sq. ft.
|Product Review||Product Review||Product Review||Product Review||Product Review||Product Review||Product Review||Product Review||Product Review|
|Where to buy|
Best Portable Air Conditioner 2019 • 8 Portable Air Conditioners Reviews
Portable air conditioners aren't just about making homes more comfortable. They are necessities when it comes to getting through the scorching heat of summer in the home that doesn't have access to central air conditioning.
Portable Air Conditioner Leaderboard 2019
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We have identified the best portable air conditioner by studying reviews and comparisons of all of the top best portable air conditioner models. We have looked at portable air conditioner review winners with a focus on those reviews that took place in 2018.
You will find our product comparison table below. This table provides a synopsis of what you need to know about each product. Use this table to help make an informed decision about what best portable air conditioner you choose to buy. Continue reading for a thorough guide on best portable air conditioner review. It includes buying, installing, repairing and so much more.
What is a Portable Air Conditioner?
Unlike central air, which uses a series of ducts and copper tubes to circulate cooled air throughout a building, portable air conditioners are low cost, easy-to-use items that cool the area in which they are placed. Not to be confused with window units, which must be propped in an open window and secured to the frame, best portable air conditioner review can be placed anywhere in a room that has an outlet and access to the outside.
A true benefit of best portable air conditioner is the ability to move the unit as the owner sees fit. This makes a portable air conditioner a good choice for renters. A person renting a home or office without investing in technology that cannot travel with them should they decide to move. It also allows air conditioning to be concentrated on a particular area of the building. Rooms that experience significant heat, like kitchens or attic rooms, may need more cooling than other parts of the house.
Another benefit for best portable air conditioner is the cost. Central air costs thousands of dollars to purchase. It also requires professional installers. Even the best portable air conditioner are relatively low cost by comparison. Likewise, nearly anyone can install a best portable air conditioner. It only takes minutes to set up the appliance.
How Does a Portable Air Conditioner Work?
Simply put, a best portable air conditioner works by exchanging warm air for cool air with the aid of air circulation and refrigerant. Basically, a compressor inside the best portable air conditioner review pulls air into the unit. It is then circulated through coils and cooled with the aid of refrigerant. The cold air is then pushed back out into the room. Moisture that is pulled out of the atmosphere is released through a drain hose or into a drain pan. Keep reading for a more detailed explanation about how best portable air conditioner work.
What is Refrigerant?
In order to understand how best portable air conditioner work, you must first be introduced to refrigerant. It is fluid that can be converted back and forth between its liquid and gaseous states. Refrigerant is commonly used in any household devices that require cooling. This includes all types of air conditioners as well as refrigerators and freezers. Refrigerant is also used in automobile air conditioning.
Older models of portable air conditioners use the refrigerant R22. This class of hydrochlorofluorocarbons will be phased out of use by 2020 due to its contribution to greenhouse effects and damage to the ozone layer.
How Does Refrigerant Work?
The refrigerant uses the portable air conditioner's compressor to convert from a low pressure to a high pressure gas. The copper coils then cause that high pressure gas to transform into liquid. A second set of coils, the evaporator coils, cause the pressure of the now liquid refrigerant to drop. It returns to its gaseous state, but is now cool. The portable air conditioner pulls in the heated air from the room and cools it alongside the refrigerant. Once the air is cooled, it is pushed out with the aid of a blower.
This cycle continues repeatedly until the portable air conditioner detects the room has reached the appropriate temperature. Depending on the model of the best portable air conditioner review, this could take anywhere from a few minutes to several hours.
What Happens Next?
Portable air conditioners use hoses to release the condensate to the outside world. Condensate is another word for water droplets that form over the coils, pulled from the air's humidity. This water must have a place to go, which is why hoses are necessary. Best Portable air conditioner hoses may be placed in a window or any other area that is both accessible to the outside and able to be sealed. For many, this is preferable to a window unit. While a window is still needed, the hose does not have to be permanently put into place.
Types of Portable Air Conditioners
There are many types and sizes of best portable air conditioner review on the market. Within the different models are four major components that differ. It is very important to pay attention to these components as they help to determine which will work best in any given environment.
British Thermal Units, or BTUs, show the amount of space any portable air conditioner review can cool. The more BTUs, the more space the air conditioner can cool. Most portable air conditioners are available in BTUs from 8,000 to 14,000. Generally, an 8,000 BTU portable air conditioner will cool a room that is up to 200 square feet, or 1,600 cubic feet, in size. For every additional 50 square feet, or 400 cubic feet, another 1,000 BTUs is needed. For example, a room that has 300 square feet would need a 10,000 BTU portable air conditioner review. A room that has 450 square feet would need a 13,000 BTU portable air conditioner.
Pros and Cons
The natural choice may be to get the lowest cost best portable air conditioner review needed for any given space. This usually means buying a best portable air conditioner review that has the lowest amount of BTUs. While this often saves money at the outset, it does limit the portability of the unit. Should you wish to move the air conditioner to another room, you may not have the capacity to cool the area if that room is larger in size.
BTU Based Purchase Decisions
When it comes to BTUs, the best choice is the one that is most convenient for you. Think about how much you can afford now, how much your are comfortable paying for your monthly utility bills and the size of the rooms where a portable air conditioner may be needed.
Water Removal Systems
The water collected from hot air must go somewhere. Most portable air conditioners use a hose that allows water to flow freely out of a window or other outdoor opening. Fully self-evaporative models are higher end options that require little to no extra care. Any water is expelled on its own along with the hot air that is pumped outside. Models with condensate pumps do not self-evaporate but use pumps to push the air out through the hose. Gravity drains simply rely on the force of gravity to rid the unit of water.
Pros and Cons
Models that are self-evaporating are the easiest to use, but they are also the most expensive. These models can run continuously with no effort on the part of the user. However, this does come at cost. Portable air conditioner review with gravity drains may be better budget-wise, but they also sometimes need maintenance to keep the water flowing.
The least expensive option is almost always going to be the standard air conditioner with a fill bucket. These can cause issues for those who are short on time. Likewise, during very hot days, the bucket may fill more quickly, necessitating more maintenance than normal. The unit does have to be turned off and unplugged when removing the fill bucket, which could detract from the benefits of owning a best portable air conditioner on those hot days of summer.
Water Removal Systems Based Purchase Decisions
Buyers should consider the cost of equipment as well as the amount of maintenance they are willing and able to do. Those who are comfortable with removing fill buckets may find the cost savings it worth it to them to purchase a more standard portable air conditioner. Those with mobility issues or limited time might find the larger investment in a higher end model to be a much better choice in the long run.
Different Types of Plugs
The average home has a circuitry system that can handle up to 125 volts or 15 amps of electricity. Luckily, many best portable air conditioner work within this voltage. However, there are some that are made to use more than 125 volts. If this is the case, the best portable air conditioner must use a circuitry system that is made specifically for higher voltage.
Pros and Cons
Portable air conditioners that need more power tend to be stronger and more efficient. Large rooms and ones that tend to be overheated benefit from more powerful appliances. However, this also often means a higher utility bill each month. Furthermore, purchasing a best portable air conditioner that requires additional voltage does mean a visit from the electrician.
Plug Based Purchase Decisions
This is simply a matter of what you want out of your portable air conditioner. Smaller rooms or areas that will rarely use air conditioning should be fine with standard models. It will rarely be worth the time or expense to hire an electrician in order to outfit your home with a large model best portable air conditioner. The exception to this is if you have a very large room that simply cannot be cooled by a smaller machine.
Some portable air conditioners offer features other than cooling the air. The most common additional features are dehumidifying and heating.
Dehumidifiers are used to rid the air of moisture without recycling and/or cooling that air. When moisture is removed from the air, homeowners experience fewer allergies, dust gathers less quickly and mold is less likely to form within walls. A dehumidifier can also help to make a room feel less warm even without using the cooling function of the best portable air conditioner review. Many users like this feature because it has little effect on the utility bill while also providing a good service.
Portable air conditioners that can double as heaters are very popular in rooms that don't otherwise have access to central heating and cooling systems. Basement rooms, attic rooms, work sheds, farm structures and more can greatly benefit from a portable heater. This may be an excellent choice if you need both heating and cooling throughout the year but don't have space for multiple appliances. This is also a popular choice for renters.
Dehumidifying and heating properties are just two special features offered by some portable air conditioner manufacturers. Others include remote controls, washable filters, humidity monitors, digital screens and more.
Pros and Cons
Any additional features of a best portable air conditioner add to the initial cost. However, it could be far less expensive to buy one machine that performs all of the functions needed rather than two or three. Generally, a best portable air conditioner that can also be used as a heater or a dehumidifier does not cost more to operate than more standard appliances.
Special Features Based Purchase Decisions
The most important question to ask is whether or not you will need these additional features now or in the future. If you are certain you will not need a dehumidifier or a portable heater, you can save money by purchasing a standard best portable air conditioner review. Conversely, if you think there may be any possibility that you will need one of these devices in the future, it may be wise to make the investment sooner rather than later.
How Portable Air Conditioners are Reviewed
In order to make the best-informed decision regarding your portable air conditioner purchase, you must look at reviewing guides. Only models that have undergone thorough reviews can be proven to effective at cooling any given space. There are a variety of reviews portable air conditioners should undergo in order to give you the most accurate information.
We have taken the time to thoroughly study numerous reviews on best portable air conditioners. These reviews are carried out by manufacturers, consumer advocacy groups, environmental health agencies, engineers and scientists. They spend months studying these appliances so you don't have to. Below you will find the areas where most researchers focus their efforts when reviewing portable air conditioners.
The number one factor in choosing a best portable air conditioner is its effectiveness at cooling the air. Cooling performance is reviewed by placing the best portable air conditioner in a controlled environment that is kept at a constant temperature and humidity level. Reviewers rank how quickly the portable air conditioner lowers the heat in this environment. They set a predetermined temperature goal and then record how long it takes the portable air conditioner to achieve that level of cooling. A standard review is lowering 90 degrees Fahrenheit environment to a more comfortable 75 degrees.
The cooling performance review gives you, the buyer, a chance to learn how well the unit performs in its primary responsibility. You can learn exactly what level of coolness you can expect as well as the length of time it takes to achieve that temperature. You may also learn that the model you have been eyeing does not have the ability to cool as much as you had hoped.
The United States Department of Energy has a standard practice in place to best portable air conditioner review for energy efficiency. Likewise, in 2018, the Federal Trade Commission set forth new labels for energy efficiency in portable air conditioner review. Thanks to both of these agencies, reviewing for energy efficiency has become a consistent, streamlined process.
Reviewers determine how much power is needed for a portable air conditioner to cool to a predetermined level. They estimate how much it costs to use a portable air conditioner over a one-year period. They also compare portable air conditioner review to one another.
Understanding energy efficiency is important for consumers who want to save money on utility bills while also protecting the environment. A higher efficiency best portable air conditioner costs less to operate. It also leaves a smaller carbon footprint than lower efficiency models.
Ease of Use
Many reviewers of portable air conditioner review consider how easy it is to use the appliance. Ease of use may vary depending on the reviewer, but you can typically expect to find items like portability, user-friendliness and the difficulty level of installation to be among the chief factors considered. Other items reviewers may look at our instruction guides and remote controls. Some are made to be simple to follow and easy to understand. Others may be more difficult to learn.
Ease of use is much more subjective than the other reviewed features. Because there is no scientific gauge for ease of use, you may find yourself disagreeing with some of the findings of the researchers. This is a time that customer reviews may help to supplement the portable air conditioner review. Those who have purchased the items and used them in their own homes are sometimes the best reviewers. That is particularly true when it comes to everyday usage.
Some reviewers only look at a portable air conditioner's cooling capacity. Others take an in-depth approach to reviews. Some of the lesser considered, yet still important, factors may include appearance, sound and weight. Attractive, modern-looking portable air conditioners may have more favorable reviews than those that look stuffy and old-fashioned. A portable air conditioner that makes excessive noise is sure to get a lower rating than those that are whisper quiet.
What To Pay Attention to When Buying a Portable Air Conditioner
Always read reviews from professionals before buying a portable air conditioner review. These reviews offer thorough insight into the appliances. You will learn all you need to know and more about portable air conditioner review by reading the findings of those who have done the homework on each model for you.
Professional reviewers have the benefit of being able to contrast and compare multiple portable air conditioner review from a variety of manufacturers. They can look at the features with a clinical eye without worrying about the effects the machines will have on their homes or their pocketbooks. There is no emotion involved with professional reviews, which makes them an excellent source of hard data.
Professional reviews are important because they go over the mechanics of each appliance. Consumer reviews can arguably be even more important because they help you learn how a portable air conditioner review functions in daily life. Day-to-day concerns, such as noise level and how the product holds up over time, are invaluable in consumer reviews.
You should be warned that not all consumer reviews can be trusted. Some consumers may have faulty equipment due to misuse or a lack of understanding of the appliance itself. Likewise, whereas professional reviewers use controlled environments for their portable air conditioner reviews, homeowners only have their own space. The variety in home sizes, geography and even placement of the portable air conditioner review can make a huge impact on how it performs. This is why consumer reviews should always be used in conjunction with professional ones.
Plug and Power Types
As stated earlier, some portable air conditioners require more power than is available through standard circuitry. If you are unable to upgrade the circuitry in your building, you should avoid any portable air conditioner that requires more than 125 volts or 15 amps.
Price is always a factor when investing in appliances. Many portable air conditioners are affordable, even those that are highly ranked. Be sure to consider your budget and determine how much you are willing to spend. Look for portable air conditioner review that are within your allotted budget, but also takes a peek at those that are slightly out of reach. You may find that you are able to stretch your dollars for a machine that will last longer and perform better. Likewise, don't forget to consider how much the portable air conditioner review will cost to operate. You may find that a more expensive machine costs less in the long run due to its energy efficient status.
There is not an exact right or wrong when it comes to shopping for portable air conditioners. Purchases of these items should be considered on a case-by-case basis. While the above guidelines offer a good place to start for every consumer, there are also a number of questions you should ask yourself.
Where Will the Portable Air Conditioner Be Used?
Portable air conditioner review is made to cool single rooms rather than whole houses. Determine where the portable air conditioner review is most needed. Ensure you have adequate space in front of a window or other outside opening for the exhaust hose. Next, measure your room. Using the guidelines outlined above, that you need 1,000 BTUs for every 50 square feet of space, begin narrowing down your choices in portable air conditioners.
What if you need to cool more than a single room? Manufacturers recommend using portable AC in areas that are somewhat open with wide doorways. They also recommend aiding the portable air conditioner review with oscillating fans. Strategic placement of these fans can help the cooled air reach nearby areas without purchasing additional portable air conditioners.
Don't forget, even though portable air conditioners are movable, they are not strictly small. Some are quite large. All require an ample amount of space in order to properly function. You will need to make sure the area you choose for your portable air conditioner has enough room to keep the unit near an outdoor opening while also not being pressed against a wall or otherwise covered with objects like furniture or window treatments.
Will I Need to Move the Portable Air Conditioner or Will it Stay Static?
By its very definition, a portable air conditioner is made to be moved. However, most users prefer to keep the air conditioner in one location throughout the duration of its use. Some of the larger units may be very heavy and difficult to move. Even with wheels, those portable air conditioners that are placed on the carpet may not move easily. If you feel you will need to use the portable air conditioner in multiple locations, study the portability factor. Look for customer reviews that cover the ease of movement. Read about the dimensions and the weight of each air conditioner.
You might also consider buying multiple portable air conditioners. If you have more than one room that is very hot, rather than moving the appliance, removing the exhaust hose, reinstalling the window kit and starting all over, you can purchase two or three of these appliances for a house that is very comfortable now matter how hot it is outside. The purchase of multiple portable air conditioner review may seem like a lot, but the investment is minuscule when compared to retrofitting a central air conditioning system to a building.
How Often Will My Portable Air Conditioner Be Needed?
Few places require the use of air conditioning throughout the year. Most locations may only need cooled air during the hot summer months. Others might use portable air conditioner review even less often, saving the appliance just for the hottest weeks or days. If your air conditioning needs are limited, you might be satisfied opting for a smaller model that will take less storage space. You might be less worried about longevity and warranties for a model with limited use.
Conversely, some will need to use their portable air conditioner review on a regular basis. This is especially true in hot climates, attic level rooms and businesses where overheating is an issue. Server rooms are particularly prone to overheat, which can be dangerous for multiple reasons. If you plan on using a portable air conditioner most, if not every, day, make sure you find one that can withstand long-term, repeated use.
Do I Need Any Extra Features or Functions?
It is easy to get distracted by extra features on any appliance, including a portable air conditioner review. However, if you will not use those additional functions, you may be spending money for no reason. For instance, if you only need a portable air conditioner review for its cooling effects, you should not seek a unit that offers to heat as well. This only adds to the price without giving you anything useful.
There are some extra features that you may find could be worthwhile, even if you hadn't previously considered them. Some portable air conditioners use remote control. This can be a great bonus for those with mobility issues. A programmable timer, available on some models, allows you to cool a room on your schedule. It also saves on energy and utility bill costs by only running when you wish.
Will a Portable Air Conditioner Help My Place of Work?
A place of work has special needs that may or may not be enhanced by a portable air conditioner review. Depending on the environment, a portable air conditioner could be perfect for your workplace.
Areas that have large amounts of equipment that put out heat, like manufacturing facilities and server rooms, need cooling. If your business does not have the structure or the funds for central air conditioning, a portable air conditioner review could be the perfect solution. You do not even strictly need to have window access when using a portable air conditioner in this type of environment. You may purchase ceiling hoses so that exhaust fumes can be led upward and into a drop panel ceiling. You can also cut an opening through an external wall that is then tightly sealed around the exhaust hose.
Offices that require interaction with customers may benefit from portable air conditioners as well. These appliances allow for cooling without a significant investment. Should you choose to go this route, be sure to study the noise level of the appliance. Offices that greet customers either in person or over the phone should opt for the quietest portable air conditioner review on the market.
How Important are Returns and Warranties?
Different manufacturers have different guidelines for returns. Some will accept a return with a full refund within a certain amount of time with no questions asked. Others will only accept returned items if they are unused and still in their original packaging. Many require a restocking fee or expect the consumer to pay return shipping. If returns are a concern to you, look for manufacturers and sellers with liberal return policies. This may mean that you pay more upfront. For some, an additional expense is worth peace of mind.
Warranties are different from returns in that they kick in when the equipment malfunctions. Most warranties only cover defects that are due to problems with craftsmanship or defective components. They may also cover items that arrive cracked or broken. Warranties rarely cover issues that arise due to misuse of equipment or damage caused after the item has been purchased. Manufacturer warranties vary. Most warranties are standard at one to five years. Remember to look at warranty terms before buying your best portable air conditioner review.
Once you have answered these questions, you should be confident that you are making the best-informed purchase possible.
Top Seven Portable Air Conditioner Manufacturers
Portable air conditioner reviews are carried out on nearly all models. Each manufacturer of the best portable air conditioner has its own way of creating products that may work for anyone. The following manufacturers have repeatedly scored high on portable air conditioner reviews carried out by numerous companies and reviewers.
LG makes portable air conditioners that are sleek and modern. The design of these impressive appliances will not interfere with the decor in your home or office. You may need to be prepared to spend a bit more when it comes to LG's portable air conditioners. However, most customers agree that the cost is a good investment.
Honeywell's portable air conditioners are known for being energy efficient. Honeywell packs its portable air conditioners with plenty of extra features. Those that include dehumidifiers are thought by many to be the best on the market.
Whynter products regularly reach the top of the list on reviews from multiple sources. The company produces energy efficient items that are low cost and easy to find. The company also offers excellent warranties on its portable air conditioners.
Frigidaire's portable air conditioners often rate highly for being easy to move. They are also some of the least noisy portable air conditioners on the market. Frigidaire is a good choice if you want a name you know you can trust.
Haier models are ideal for those with small spaces who need ultra portability. The company excels at making small, light portable air conditioners that can be easily moved from room to room. Haier also has an excellent reputation for customer service. The website contains a great deal of operating information. The company also has a toll-free hotline for any best portable air conditioner questions.
NewAir's portable air conditioners repeatedly rank highly in multiple product reviews. Reviewers love the extra options that are included with most NewAir portable air conditioners. These options include the remote control and multiple fan speeds, just to name a couple. In addition, NewAir machines quickly cool rooms once they are turned on.
Today, Friedrich Air Conditioning focuses on cooling products. The portable air conditioners from Friedrich are highly rated, especially those that are made for larger areas. The company also offers portable air conditioners that have fan only options. These allow for air circulation without cooling.
These seven companies are at the top of the heap when it comes to portable air conditioners. Other companies also have excellent items and should not be overlooked. Manufacturers like Mitsubishi, Portacool and Hisense also offer amazing portable air conditioners that often find their way on the lists of top cooling appliances in the country. Be sure to look at our comparison chart to see a variety of best portable air conditioner that could be the right choice for you.
Internet vs. Retail: Where Should You Buy Your Portable Air Conditioner?
Once you have studied all you can on portable air conditioners, it is time to make a purchase. What is your best option? There are pros and cons to buying both online and in brick-and-mortar stores.
The internet has revolutionized the way products are sold as well as the way they are bought. Internet research allows you to find everything you need to know about a product without leaving the privacy and comfort of your home. When you shop online, you know you are getting the best price available. You also don't have to deal with pushy salespeople who are seeking a commission at all costs.
The biggest benefit to internet sales is the massive number of options available at all times of the day and night. Shopping in person requires you to visit multiple stores, eating up hours or even days of your time. Likewise, if you want to think over a purchase, you must find the time to return to the store at a later date. With internet sales, you can revisit your options anytime.
While internet sales offer you variety and ease, traditional retail has an upside as well. Visiting products in person allows you to see the item face-to-face. You can judge exactly how it will look in your home or office. You can get a feel for the size and space needed for your best portable air conditioner. Some brick-and-mortar stores will even have display models that let you hear how loud the compressor runs.
The biggest advantage to brick-and-mortar sales is arguably the ability to speak to a professional in person. This is even truer if you have any problems with installation or malfunctions. However, most manufacturers and online retail stores do have their own hotlines. These allow you to reach people who can walk you through installation, troubleshoot any errors and even help you with warranty claims. Often, Internet-based customer service professionals are available 24 hours per day.
The Bottom Line
Buying from online sources is the better option. With online retailers, you have a much larger selection, lower prices and may even avoid paying taxes. Many online retailers have liberal return policies that sometimes include free return shipping. Lastly, ordering online allows you to have the best portable air conditioner delivered directly to your door.
Interesting Facts and Advice
Portable air conditioners have long been the choice for people who live in rental units, cannot afford to install central air or simply want to be able to take an air conditioning unit with them should they move. You already know that portable air conditioners are handy, flexible and low-cost alternatives to other cooling techniques. However, there is plenty that you probably do not know.
The History of the Portable Air Conditioner
It is a great mistake to assume that an air conditioning is a modern development. The first methods of cooling may have involved trickling water running through aqueducts in the houses of Ancient Rome. Ancient Egypt might have first come up with the idea of air conditioning by allowing cool water to blow through reeds hung from windowsills. Throughout the centuries, industrious people tried to find ways to cool their homes using fans, liquefied ammonia and other techniques that were somewhat successful. However, it was only when electricity became commonplace that true air conditioning was born.
Willis Carrier, founder of the Carrier Corporation, invented the first electrical air conditioner in 1902. He used a reverse steam-heating technique of blowing air through coils that were filled with cold water. Carrier's invention was so successful that he began the company that we know today to keep up with manufacturing of these appliances.
While the central air was first used in homes beginning in the 1910s, it was extremely expensive and uncommon. In fact, central air didn't truly take off until the 1970s, well after the boom of the portable air conditioner. The first best portable air conditioner was created in the 1930s by H.H. Schulz and J.Q. Sherman. This version of a window unit sat on sills of open windows and could be moved from room to room with ease. These were not widely sold until the post World War II era.
Naturally, the best portable air conditioner has changed in leaps and bounds since those early days. Spot coolers, a truly portable option, were invented in the 1980s. They were most commonly used in manufacturing facilities to keep factory workers cool while they worked. By the 1990s, the portable air conditioner review that was effective at cooling and could be easily moved was a common appliance in homes around the globe.
Figures, Data and Facts About the Portable Air Conditioner
By the Numbers
Though central air became commonplace after portable air conditioners, it is now more common for homes in the United States to have a central unit than a portable unit as their primary means of cooling. Except for the northeast United States, where portable units are more common than central air, homes are almost three times as likely to have a central air conditioning system as their main source of air conditioning.
Other interesting figures about air conditioning:
- Percentage of homes in the United States without air conditioning: About 25
- Percentage of homes in the southern United States without air conditioning: Almost zero
- Amount of electricity used by air conditioners in the United States: Approximately six percent
- Cost of using air conditioning in United States homes: $29 billion
- The year CFC production stopped in the United States: 1995
- The year HCFCs will cease production: 2030 (though most will be phased out by 2020)
- Strange Facts You Didn't Know About Air Conditioning
- The output of air conditioners is now measured in AC units. However, when air conditioning was first introduced, it was measured in ice units.
- The amount of energy used by air conditioning in the United States is equivalent to the amount of energy used on all electronic equipment in Africa.
- Charles Gates, the owner of the first fully air-conditioned home, died before construction was complete.
- Ever wondered why schools break in the summer? Few school buildings had air conditioning. Educators argued that the hot conditions in school buildings were dangerous and affected learning. Therefore, schools and even some places of business would close their doors when the temperatures rose.
- Movie theatres were some of the first businesses to begin regularly using air conditioning. They did so to entice customers to watch more movies in the hot summer months.
- Air conditioning was installed in the White House in 1929 while Herbert Hoover was president.
- Packard was the first automobile manufacturer to offer air conditioning in a vehicle. Unfortunately, few of these models sold because the air conditioning unit took up so much space and significantly raised the price of the car.
- In the United States, the chance of dying from heat-related causes has dropped by 80 percent since the 1950s. This was when portable air conditioning became common in new homes.
Air Conditioning Myths
Myth: Oscillating Fans Cool the Home
Fact: Fans circulate air, which helps to remove moisture from the skin and bring down your body temperature. Fans do not have the ability to produce cool air.
Myth: Portable Air Conditioners Contribute to Illnesses and Allergies
Fact: The opposite is actually true. Portable air conditioners pull moisture out of the air, making your allergies less severe. Removing moisture from the air also makes you less likely to fall prey to viruses.
Myth: It saves money to leave a portable air conditioner on one temperature setting.
Fact: Programmable portable air conditioners allow you to vary the temperature specifically so you can use less energy and have a lower utility bill. It is wise to keep the temperature at a higher setting when you are away from home and overnight when the weather is naturally cooler.
Myth: The biggest air conditioner is the best choice regardless of your room size.
Fact: Bigger isn't always better. Buy the portable air conditioner that is the appropriate size for the room(s) you need to cool. Purchasing a portable air conditioner that is oversized will only cost you more, both in initial cost and energy bills.
Myth: You can lower your utility bill by using fans along with portable air conditioners.
Fact: You can use fans to help move the cool air to other parts of the room or house. However, fans do not cool the air. Their presence will in no way help the portable air conditioner with its cooling function.
Install a Portable Air Conditioners Correctly in Six Simple Steps
Installing a portable air conditioner is much easier than you may think. Still, you should not begin the installation process without thoroughly reading through the manufacturer's installation guide. Most manufacturers also offer numbers you can call to get help with installing your unit. Your other option is to follow this simple guide:
- Unpack all equipment and paperwork from the box. Place instructions, care guides, warranty cards and any other paperwork in an easy to find location. Read through the installation guide at least one time. If there is no installation guide, check the manufacturer's website.
- Choose a location that is near both a window and an outlet. The area where you place your portable air conditioner should be free from debris, furniture and window coverings. Make sure you have enough room next to the window so that the portable air conditioner is not flush against the wall. It must have plenty of room on all sides to allow air to circulate.
- Inspect the window adapter kit that came with the portable air conditioner. The adapter kit should fit snugly around the exhaust hose and within your window opening. In most cases, the window adapter kit will be sufficient and no further steps need to be taken to make it fit. However, there are occasional instances in which supplemental materials must be procured to ensure no air escapes from around the exhaust hose. Do this by measuring the window opening as well as the diameter of the hose if the entire adapter kit must be replaced. Plexiglass or plywood can be cut to specifications at any hardware store.
- Connect the exhaust hose to the portable air conditioner. Some units may have connectors already installed. In others, you may have to do this step as well. Once the exhaust hose is connected to the portable air conditioner, connect the other end to the window connection bracket. Place that bracket in the open window.
- Secure the window adapter kit or the newly cut plexiglass/cardboard in place in the window. Close the window on top of the hose connection. If necessary, use duct tape to seal the window, hose or any other areas that may have gaps or be unstable.
- Ensure any plastic, stickers or papers stuck to the portable air conditioner review have been removed. Uncoil the outlet and plug the unit in.
10 Tips for Portable Air Conditioner Care
Purchasing and installing your portable air conditioner is not the end. You must maintain the unit in order to keep it in good working order. Luckily, it is very easy to take care of a portable air conditioner. Doing so ensures your new appliance will have a long, healthy life.
Keep the Area Around the Portable Air Conditioner Clear of Clutter
When you first installed your portable air conditioner, you knew to remove any obstacles from around the unit. Doing so keeps the air circulating around the portable air conditioner. Over time, you may find you or your family forgetting to keep that area clear. Do a weekly check of the air conditioner, removing any items that might be too close. Also, remind everyone in the home or office that the portable air conditioner needs its space.
Pre-Cool a Room Before It Needs Cooling
This step may be difficult to understand at first. However, it is an important one with three huge benefits. First, it helps your portable air conditioner function more quickly and easily on hot days. Second, it will keep your house comfortable at all times. Last, pre-cooling is easier on your portable air conditioner's motor. Pre-cooling simply involves lowering the temperature in the room before the hottest days, or even the hottest part of the day, causes a room to become unbearably hot. Allowing the air conditioner to reach a comfortable temperature when the room is still comfortable doesn't put as much stress on the compressor as waiting until the hottest part of the day to turn the unit on.
Clean the Exterior of the Portable Air Conditioner on a Regular Basis
Dust and dirt particles can get trapped inside the components of the air conditioner. A layer of dust can cause the motor to become clogged. Eventually, it will fail. Clean the exterior of the portable air conditioner review at least once each week.
Clean the Interior of the Portable Air Conditioner
Just as the exterior needs to be cleaned, the interior of the air conditioner should be regularly maintained. You can use a bottle of compressed air to clear the interior of dust and debris. You can also open up the unit and physically clean the coils to keep them in the best working order. Cleaning solutions for air conditioner coils are available at hardware stores.
Consider Changing Air Conditioner Placement
A portable air conditioner offers flexibility that you won't find with many other heating and cooling applications. After using your new portable air conditioner, you may reconsider its placement. Portable air conditioners that are held in very hot, sunny locations may have to work harder to reach the cool temperature you desire. That additional strain on the unit's motor could cause its lifespan to be much shorter than necessary. Look for a window that does not get much afternoon sun for the best portable air conditioner placement.
Along with the heat, portable air conditioners should not be located in areas that are extremely humid. Geographically, this may be nearly impossible. The southern United States and the Midwest are notorious for having overly hot, humid summers. Still, low humidity areas are the best spots for portable air conditioners. If this simply isn't a possibility, remember to check the water drainage on your appliance as often as you can. Excessive moisture will cause faults in the compressor, leaving you without a working air conditioner.
Rid Your Exhaust Hose of Kinks
The exhaust hose is necessary for ridding the unit of unwanted moisture. If the hose is allowed to become bent or kinked, the moisture could remain in the hose. This could lead to mold building on the inside, eventual clogs and a portable air conditioner that no longer functions. Another problem that may occur from a kinked hose is moisture dripping directly back into the air conditioner. A motor or compressor that is exposed to water may fail.
Some users of portable air conditioners may be tempted to lengthen the exhaust hose if there is no usable outlet near a window. This is not advised, but if it has been necessary, be sure to check that the extension is straight and seamlessly connected. Any non-standard connection can come apart with relative ease, which is why it is important to pay close attention to these home fixes.
Don't Forget About the Filter
Portable air conditioners contain filters that trap impurities from the air. Those filters get very dirty very fast. To keep your portable air conditioner in top shape, clean your washable filter at least once a month. If your unit has a filter that must be replaced, be sure to replace it according to the manufacturer's instructions.
Listen to the Portable Air Conditioner's Motor
You will become accustomed to whatever noise your portable air conditioner's motor makes while it is running. If that noise changes, it is time to act. A motor that loudly hums is probably experiencing electrical failure. This can be caused by a clogged engine (see above), but is more often due to your home's circuitry. Something as simple as a blown fuse can keep the outlet from producing the energy needed for a standard portable air conditioner. If the unit is allowed to continue running on an outlet that is no longer functioning, the motor will become so stressed that it will eventually wear out. A simple way to review this is to move the portable air conditioner to a different room with a separate outlet. If the problem is then resolved, it is time to call an electrician to look at your old circuitry.
Take Care of the Remote Control
Many units come standard with remotes. These devices allow you to control the portable air conditioner in the easiest way possible. Unfortunately, remote controls often get lost or damaged. Choose a specific place as your remote's “home” and let all family members know the remote must stay in that spot when not in use. Having an organized system decreases the likelihood of losing your remote.
Multiple hands touch remote controls, which means they are covered in germs much of the time. Regularly clean your remote with anti-bacterial wipes. The remote will stay clean and fresh while you remain clear of germs.
Plan for Smart Storage Solutions
Most homeowners will not use their portable air conditioners throughout the year. When yours is not in use, store it in a safe and careful way. Start by completely draining the unit. Even if you have a self-evaporating portable air conditioner with a drain hose, you will want to make sure that your appliance is completely free of moisture. Remove any drain pans and dump whatever water has accumulated. Next, run the portable air conditioner in fan-only mode. You must do this for several hours in order to ensure the inside is completely dry. Next, completely unplug your portable air conditioner. Remove the exhaust hose from the window and the power from the outlet.
Open the portable air conditioner and clean all of the internal parts as well, especially the coils and any washable filter. Allow these items to dry before returning them to the air conditioner. Wrap the air conditioner with heavy plastic sheeting that is cinched at the base to keep dust out. Last, find a storage spot in your home that will not dip below freezing. A portable air conditioner that is allowed to freeze over the harsh winter months may not function properly, or at all, once summer rolls around again.
Portable Air Conditioner
Portable air conditioners come standard with everything you need in order to have a workable, functioning air conditioner. However, there are also accessories available that may make your portable air conditioner work even better.
- Portable Air Conditioner Cover
- Portable Sliding Glass Door Kit
- Temperature and Humidity Monitor
- Window Security Lock
Portable Air Conditioner Alternatives
There is a chance that you are still not completely sold on the idea of purchasing the best portable air conditioner review. Perhaps you don't have space next to a window or sliding glass door for the exhaust hose. Maybe you don't have the money to buy another appliance. It is possible that you simply want to know all of your options before making a purchase decision.
Oscillating Fans and Ceiling Fans
Fans will not create cool air, but they can help to lower body temperature. They also keep the air moving in a room, which can help with stuffiness. If you only have a slight problem with heat in your home, a fan might be a fine choice.
Fans come in all shapes and sizes. Ceiling fans are mounted into the ceiling. They create a nice breeze overhead, which is where the air is the hottest. Indoor and outdoor models are available. Window fans are large, square devices that are meant to be propped in open windows. Oscillating fans may be large or small. The fan turns while it is blowing, placing even more circulated air throughout the room.
Window Air Conditioners
Window units function in a very similar fashion as portable air conditioners. Window units are braced to the inside of an open window. One side pulls air from the room into the air conditioner. The air is circulated over coils, cooled, and then pumped back into the room. The outside of the air conditioner collects and drips fluid, which is then released outdoors.
Window units are very common in apartments and older homes that have not been outfitted for central air. They can be very strong. Many are built to last for decades. However, once a window unit is braced inside a window, it is difficult, if not impossible, to remove. The window unit cannot be moved from room to room if a change is warranted. It also cannot be easily removed in the winter. Instead, most homeowners use plastic sheeting to cover the air conditioner, both inside and out, when it is not in use.
The positive side of window units is that they work very well. These AC create cool air in the room where they are placed with little effort. The negative is that window units are unsightly and immovable.
Central Air Conditioning
A series of ducts throughout the building releases cooled air into each room. This is the easiest way to keep an entire house cool. It is also the most popular choice for newly built homes. In the United States, approximately 75 percent of new homes are built with central air.
Homes that do not currently have central air installed can be retrofitted with an air pump, ducts and a cooling system. This effort will create a cool, low humidity atmosphere. Central air is easy to use, arguably the best at cooling and will raise the value of your home.
On the downside, retrofitting a home with central cooling can be extraordinarily expensive. Indeed, the cost is so prohibitive it is rarely worthwhile. Once the central cooling system has been put into place, it is also more expensive to operate than a portable air conditioner review. Central air systems can also be extremely difficult to learn. You must become an expert in programming the system in order to have ideal temperature throughout the year.
If you want to learn even more about portable air conditioners, we have scoured the web, searching for the best sites with the most trustworthy information.
This Old House has long offered go-to solutions on home repair and do-it-yourself projects. This guide explains to you exactly how to install your new portable air conditioner. The video even shows you how to create your own outdoor vent if you don't have access to a window and don't have an existing wall vent.
This opinion piece published in Popular Mechanics magazine details why you may wish to purchase a best portable air conditioner review. It is an honest look at exactly what you can expect from a best portable air conditioner in your home.
The Wikipedia entry on air conditioning is filled with information and tidbits on the history of air conditioning, how modern air conditioners work, different types of installations and more. Read through this entry to learn more than you ever thought you could know about air conditioning units of all types and sizes.
Though many of these tips have been previously mentioned, it is always good to learn as much as you can about maintaining the appliances in your home. The Allergy and Air website offers much more than simple tips and tricks. The site provides background into why you should take care of your best portable air conditioner review and how it can improve your quality of life. While you are at the Allergy and Air website, also look for its articles on how to save money while using a best portable air conditioner review and information on the different types of filters.
The perfect site for do-it-yourselfers, Do It Yourself provides you a glimpse into what can go wrong with your new appliance. Not to worry, the site also offers advice on how to troubleshoot and repair those problems if they do arise. It is not a bad idea to read through this site prior to purchasing your portable air conditioner. Understanding where problems originate may help you to prevent them from occurring in the first place.
Best portable air conditioner manufacturers have websites that go over all of the details of their models. It must be noted that these websites, while excellent sources are built to sell their own portable air conditioners. They may use sales language and techniques that are meant to persuade you to purchase their products. Ignore this as much as possible and concentrate on the good information contained within.