10 Best Portable Air Conditioners

Summer is here, and the heat is not messing around this season. Luckily, neither are we. After digging through hundreds of reviews and researching side by side comparisons, we have compiled a list of the best portable air conditioners. While some people enjoy the luxury of central A/C throughout their house, most of us are stuck with ceiling fans at best. Or maybe your central A/C isn’t so luxurious after all, and it doesn’t reach all parts of the house. Regardless, knowing how unbearably hot the sun can strike, a portable air conditioner is worth the investment.

Are you looking for more buyer’s guides for your home? We have plenty of products to show.

What is a Portable Air Conditioner?

A portable air conditioner is a stand-alone floor unit that is built on wheels for mobility. It can be rolled to anywhere in the house that is in reach of an electrical plug and an exterior window. As the portable A/C unit pumps cold air throughout the room, it exhausts hot air out of a ventilation hose, which must be positioned at an open window.

Top Ten Portable Air Conditioners

We’ve made it, so there is no need to look through the thousands of options or roll the dice on the first one you see. Whether you prefer something with the best cooling power, a dehumidifier feature, a heating function, or a low noise level, this list breaks everything down for you to help you decide.

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Whynter Elite ARC-122DS 

Whynter Elite ARC-122DS

The Whynter Elite Arc-122DS dual hose portable air conditioner has an activated carbon filter and a dehumidifier. So, not only does it pump cold, clean air into your room, it can also take away the moister in the air. It features a timer and comes with remote control, allowing you to optimize maximum comfort and relaxation. 

Pros:

  • Winner of Good Housekeeping’s “Best Portable Air Conditioners to Buy in 2019”
  • Declared “The most efficient and fastest cooling portable AC” by the New York Times Wirecutter
  • Adjustable digital thermostat (61°F – 89°F) with a 24-hour programmable timer
  • Eco-friendly design with automatic condensation exhaustion
  • Remotely controlled
  • Washable filter
  • Cools rooms up to 400 sq. ft.

Cons:

  • Fans continue to run at peak temperature
  • The unit does not display current room temperature
  • Needs to be drained regularly on humid days

Whynter ARC-14SH Portable Air Conditioner and Heater

Whynter ARC-14SH Portable Air Conditioner and Heater

An upgrade to the Arc-122DS, the Whynter Arc-14SH Portable Air Conditioner includes all of the earlier models’ features with a few improvements. This model features a built-in heater, and increased cooling potential and dehumidifying capacity.

Pros:

  • Winner of Good Housekeeping’s “2019’s Best Overall” award
  • Adjustable digital thermostat (61°F – 89°F) with a 24-hour programmable timer
  • Eco-friendly design with automatic condensation exhaustion
  • Remotely controlled
  • Washable filter
  • Cools rooms up to 500 sq. ft.
  • Energy efficient

Cons:

  • Runs loudly until compressor shuts off within 5°F of the target temperature

Related: 10 Best Outdoor Heaters of 2020

Black+Decker BPACT08WT

Black+Decker BPACT08WT

Ideal for small houses and apartments, the Black+Decker BPACT08WT features a quiet but powerful 8,000 BTU compressor, and an adjustable fan capable of cooling the air to a comfortable 65°F. 

Pros:

  • Adjustable fan speed for ideal comfort levels
  • Fast and steady cooling of rooms up to 200 sq. ft.
  • User-friendly LED display and a 24-hour timer
  • Easy to clean air filter
  • Three cooling modes: AC, dehumidifier, fan
  • Energy-efficient but powerful 8,000 BTU compressor

Cons:

  • Ideal for small spaces
  • Struggles to cool air at high temperatures
  • Bulky design

LG LP1417GSR Portable Air Conditioner

LG LP1417GSR Portable Air Conditioner

Built for performance and convenience, the LG LP1417GSR comes equipped with a 14,000 BTU compressor, making it perfect for rooms up to 500 sq. ft. despite its power, it features an average decibel rate of 52-54 dB, making this unit is one of the quietest on the market

Pros:

  • Capable of cooling up to 500 sq. ft.
  • Bucket-free Dehumidification: 6.6 pints per hour 
  • 14,000 BTU compressor

Cons:

  • Runs loud
  • May struggle to cool space on hotter days

Frigidaire Cool Connect Smart

Frigidaire Cool Connect Smart

One of the most powerful portable air conditioners on the market, the Frigidaire Cool Connect Smart Portable Air Conditioner, more than lives up to its name. Able to cool up to 550 sq. ft., the 360-degree airflow circulates the air, cooling the room quicker than other air conditioners.

Pros:

  • Wi-Fi capable with Frigidaire smart app
  • 360-degree airflow circulates air upwardly
  • Three fan speeds with energy saver mode
  • 24-hour timer
  • Energy Star certified
  • Cools rooms up to 550 sq. ft.
  • Powerful 12,000 BTU compressor

Cons:

  • Does not roll easily on carpet
  • May struggle to cool space on hotter days

Honeywell HL12CESWK Contempo Series

Honeywell HL12CESWK Contempo Series

Built for performance and dependability with a stylish look, the Honeywell HL12CESWK Contempo Series Portable Air Conditioner gets the job done. Featuring a powerful 12,000 BTU compressor, it can cool rooms up to 550 sq. ft.

Pros:

  • Dual filter design protects against dust and dander
  • Three fan speeds with sleep mode
  • User-friendly digital controls
  • Removes 86 pints of condensation per 24 hours
  • Cools rooms up to 550 sq. ft.
  • Powerful 12,000 BTU compressor

Cons:

  • Runs loudly
  • Poor hose insulation and venting

Related: 10 Best Outdoor Motion Sensor Lights of 2020

Honeywell MO08CESWB Compact 3-in-1 Portable Air Conditioner

Honeywell MO08CESWB Compact 3-in-1 Portable Air Conditioner

Ideal for small to medium-sized rooms, the Honeywell MO08CESWB Compact 3-in-1 Portable Air Conditioner can cool up to 350 sq. ft. and removed up to 44 pints of condensation per day. 

Pros:

  • Three cooling modes: AC, dehumidifier, fan
  • Remote controlled
  • Removes 44 pints of condensation per 24 hours
  • Cools rooms up to 350 sq. ft.

Cons:

  • Condensation evaporates poorly
  • May be difficult to install
  • Runs loudly
  • 4000 BTU model may struggle on hotter days

SHINCO 10,000 BTU Portable Air Conditioner

SHINCO 10,000 BTU Portable Air Conditioner

The SHINCO 10,000 BTU Portable Air Conditioners features a modern design and portable utility. Capable of cooling rooms up to 300 sq. ft. it will meet the needs of your bedroom, home office, or living room with three fan speeds and a built-in dehumidifier.

Pros:

  • Three cooling modes: AC, dehumidifier, fan
  • Easy-to-read LED display
  • 24-hour adjustable timer and temperature control
  • Adjustable fan speed
  • 10,000 BTU cooling power
  • Cools rooms up to 300 sq. ft.

Cons:

  • Runs loudly beyond sleep mode
  • Energy inefficient 

SereneLife SPLAC05W

SereneLife SPLAC05W

Featuring a modern design with remote controls, the SereneLife SLPAC105W Compact Freestanding Portable Air Conditioner fits more than your cooling needs. Featuring a built-in dehumidifier and fan, this air conditioner can cool rooms up to 300 sq. ft., reduce humidity, and help remove allergens from the air for maximum comfort.

Pros:

  • Three cooling modes: AC, dehumidifier, fan
  • Freestanding design
  • 10,000 BTU cooling power
  • Cools rooms up to 300 sq. ft.

Cons:

  • Runs very loudly
  • Ventilation hose heats up
  • May not adequately cool entire room on hot days 80° F

Midea Smart 3-in-1 Portable Air Conditioner

Midea Smart 3-in-1 Portable Air Conditioner

Midea Smart 3-in-1 Portable Air Conditioner is well beyond the air conditioner of yesteryear. Capable of remote control using any Wi-Fi enabled device, there’s no need to leave the couch, bedroom, or home office to adjust your comfort settings. Easily adjustable, the 24-hour timer ensures your home remains cool for an entire day, even while you sleep.

Pros:

  • Quick and effective cooling for up to 200 sq. ft.
  • Built-in fan and dehumidification function
  • Wi-Fi and voice control capable
  • Easy-to-read LED display
  • 24-hour adjustable timer and temperature control
  • Washable air filter
  • Energy efficient 

Cons:

  • Very loud while operating

Conclusion

Now that you’ve gone through the list and seen the best that Amazon.com has to offer, it’s time to choose the best portable air conditioner. Of course, the best option is entirely subjective and should be based on your preferences and needs. At first glance, the top three include Whynter ARC-14SH, Frigidaire Cool Connect Smart Portable Air Conditioner, and Honeywell HL12CESWK Contempo.

These three selections have similar features to most of the list, but stand out for their energy efficiency, user-friendliness, cooling power, and range, and accolades. The Whynter models received high acclaim from Good Housekeeping. At the same time, Frigidaire is a household name with a strong reputation for quality, and the Honeywell Contempo has the most powerful compressor of the three.

Did you find this list helpful? Visit our website for more useful product lists.

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Andrew Gora

Graduated from UMASS Amherst with a computer science degree. Currently the CTO of an SEO agency, and a lover for new smart tech!

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