Is Buying a Portable Air Conditioner Is Good Option In 2023?


Portable air conditioners are self-contained AC units and can be moved from room to room. They are made to cool a single room or a small home or office area. Most of the time, they don't need to be installed permanently.


Portable Air Conditioner

Portable air conditioners pull warm air from the room, cool it with a refrigerant, and then send the cool air back into the room. They use a hose to send the hot air outside through a window, wall, or drop ceiling. Some models also have a built-in dehumidifier to eliminate too much moisture in the air, which can help improve the air quality inside.


One of the best things about portable air conditioners is that they are easy to set up and move around. They are easy to set up and don't need to be installed by a pro. They can also be moved from room to room as needed. This makes them a popular choice for people who rent or live in places where they can't be installed permanently.


But portable air conditioners also have a few problems. They can be loud and might not work as well as other air conditioners, like central air or window units. They are also less powerful than larger units and may need help cooling large rooms or open areas.


When choosing a portable air conditioner, it's important to consider the size of the room you want to cool, the cooling capacity of the unit, how loud it is, and how much energy it uses. Before purchasing, it's also a good idea to read reviews and compare prices and features.


How Portable Air Conditioners Work

Portable air conditioners cool the air in a room by using refrigeration. How it works is as follows:


The portable air conditioner takes in air through a grille that lets it pull warm air from the room.


The air conditioner cools the air using a refrigerant, a chemical that can absorb and release heat. When the refrigerant is pushed together into a high-pressure gas, it gets very hot. The hot gas is then sent through a set of coils, losing its heat and turning into a liquid.


1. Air filtration: The air conditioner also filters the air as it moves through the unit, removing dust, allergens, and other particles.


2. Exhaust: The cool air is blown back into the room, and the hot air made by the refrigeration process is let out through a hose that goes out a window, wall, or drop ceiling.


3. Dehumidification: Many portable air conditioners have a built-in dehumidifier that removes excess moisture from the air. The dehumidifier pulls moisture out of the air and stores it in a tank, which needs to be emptied occasionally.


Portable air conditioners are an easy and effective way to cool a single room or small area. But it's important to choose the right size and capacity for the room you want to cool and ensure the unit is properly vented so humidity doesn't build up, and it works well.


What should I look for when buying a portable air conditioner?

Here are some important things to think about when buying a portable air conditioner:


1. Size of the room: Think about how big the room is that you want to cool. This will affect the size and power of the air conditioner you need. A good rule of thumb is to choose an air conditioner with a cooling capacity of 8,000 to 10,000 BTUs for a room up to 300 square feet and 10,000 to 12,000 BTUs for a room up to 400 square feet.


2. Energy efficiency: Look for a unit with a high Energy Efficiency Ratio (EER) rating, which shows how well the air conditioner cools compared to how much energy it uses. The unit will use less energy and cost less if it has a higher EER rating.


3. Noise level: Check the unit's decibel (dB) rating to ensure it's not too loud, especially if you plan to use it in a bedroom or other quiet space. Look for units that make 50 dB or less of noise or less.


4. Portability: Think about the unit's weight, size, and whether or not it has wheels or handles to make it easy to move. Also, check the length of the exhaust hose to ensure it can reach the window or another venting spot in your room.


Portable Air Conditioner

5. Features: Look for extras like a dehumidifier, air purifier, programmable thermostat, remote control, and timer that come with the unit. These features can make the unit easier to use and make it work better as a whole.


6. Price: Depending on size, capacity, and features, portable air conditioners can cost anywhere from a few hundred dollars to more than a thousand dollars. Set a budget and compare different models to find the best one for your needs.


Considering these things, you can choose a portable air conditioner that will cool your room well while meeting your needs and staying within your budget.

Can I use a portable air conditioner in a room without a window?

Portable air conditioners need a way to send hot air outside. This is usually done through a window, wall, or drop ceiling. If your room has no window, you can vent the air conditioner through a wall or drop ceiling, requiring more work and changes to your home.


If you can't vent the portable air conditioner outside, using it in a room without enough ventilation can cause humidity to build up, the air conditioner to cool less well, and even water damage to your home. So, it would help if you didn't use a portable air conditioner in a room that doesn't have a window or another way to let the air out.


If you don't have a window or another way to let hot air out, you could use a portable evaporative cooler or a ductless mini-split air conditioner, which doesn't need venting to the outside. It would help if you also talked to a professional HVAC technician to find the best way to cool down your situation.


Are Portable air conditioners less noisy than Window and Split AC?

The noise level of portable air conditioners can vary, but generally, they are louder than window or split AC units. This is because the compressor and other parts of a portable air conditioner are inside the unit, which can make more noise than a window or split AC unit where the compressor is outside.


But many modern portable air conditioners have noise-reducing features like insulated compressor compartments, vibration dampeners, and low-noise fans that can help lower noise levels. Some portable air conditioners also have more than one speed for the fan so that you can choose a lower speed for quieter operation.


It knows that an air conditioner's noise level is measured in decibels (dB) and that just a few decibels can make a big difference in how loud it sounds. Check the dB rating when shopping for a portable air conditioner to compare how loud each one is.


Portable air conditioners can be noisier than window or split air conditioners, but some models run more quietly.


Portable Air Conditioner Efficiency

A portable air conditioner's efficiency is usually measured by its Energy Efficiency Ratio (EER), which is the ratio of the unit's cooling capacity (in British Thermal Units, or BTUs) to the amount of power it uses (in watts). The unit cools better if the EER is higher and uses less energy.


Most portable air conditioners have lower EERs than window or split air conditioners because their design makes getting the same efficiency level harder. Because the compressor and other parts of a portable air conditioner are inside the unit, it can produce more heat, making it less effective overall.


On the other hand, modern portable air conditioners often come with energy-saving features like programmable thermostats, low-power modes, and timers that can help them work better and use less energy. Also, using a portable air conditioner with a ceiling or floor fan can help move the air around better and put less stress on the air conditioner, which makes it work better.


When looking for a portable air conditioner, look for one with a higher EER rating, which means it will work better. Also, consider how big the unit is compared to the room you want to cool. An oversized unit will use more energy than it needs to and won't work either. Choosing a portable air conditioner that is the right size and works well allows you to keep your space cool while using less energy and paying less for it.


Advantages of Portable Air Conditioners 

Having a portable air conditioner has several benefits:


1. Portability: As the name suggests, portable air conditioners are made to be easily moved from room to room. This makes them great for renters or people who move a lot.


Portable air conditioners are easy to set up and use because they don't need to be installed permanently. They usually come with a window kit that only takes a few minutes to put in.


2. Cost-effective: Portable air conditioners can be cheaper than central or split air conditioners if you only need to cool one room or a small area.


3. Energy Savings: Many modern portable air conditioners have energy-saving features like programmable thermostats and timers that can help you save money on your energy bills and use less energy.


4. No Permanent Changes: Portable air conditioners don't require permanent changes to your home, like drilling holes in walls or installing ductwork. This can make them a better choice for renters or people who want to avoid making big home changes.

 5. Portable air conditioners can be used in many places, like bedrooms, offices, living rooms, etc. They can also be used to cool areas where a window or split AC unit is impossible or to add to the cooling of a central AC system.


Portable Air Conditioner

6. Portable air conditioners are easy and inexpensive to cool your home or office without making permanent changes or installations. They can be used in many ways, save energy, and are easy to use, so many people choose them.


Disadvantages of Portable Air Conditioners 

There are many good things about portable air conditioners, but there are also some bad things to think about:


1. Cooling Capacity: Most portable air conditioners and window or split air conditioners don't cool, so they might not be a good choice for larger rooms or open floor plans.


2. Noise: Portable air conditioners can make much noise, especially when the fans are going fast. Even though some models have features to reduce noise, they are usually louder than window or split AC units.


3. Ventilation: Portable air conditioners need good ventilation to work well. This means they must be vented to the outside through a window or other suitable opening. This can be inconvenient if you don't have a convenient window or the venting hose is too short of reaching the window.


4., Water Drainage: As portable air conditioners cool the air, they take moisture out of the air. This means that they need to be drained often. Some models have a feature that makes the water evaporate independently, so you don't have to drain it by hand as often. However, you should still check and empty the water tank regularly.


5. Size and Portability: The fact that portable air conditioners can be moved from place to place can be a plus, but some models can be heavy and bulky, making them hard to move or store.


6. Energy efficiency: Some features save energy, but in general, portable air conditioners use more energy than window or split AC units, which can lead to higher energy bills over time.


Portable air conditioners are a convenient and inexpensive way to cool your home or office, but they may only be right for some situations. Before buying a portable air conditioner, you should consider how big the room is, how it will be vented, and how much cooling you need.