The Best Portable Air Conditioner Reviews and Guides

Air Conditioner has become common home appliance that most of us have. Earth that become hotter every year has forced us to have at least one air cooling unit in our house. There are two major air cooling devices available in the market today, which are air cooler and air conditioner. Air Conditioner can also be divided based on their model and functionality into 4 groups, window, split, central, and the last is portable air conditioner that we are going to discuss here.

Why bother buying portable AC?

As I mention before, those 4 are grouped by the functionality. So, what can you expect from portable air conditioner? As the name, this model is focused to be movable from room to room. Unlike common air conditioner that has fixed position, this device is equipped with castor wheels, so you can easily push it to the place you need to be cooled. This cooling device don’t need outer compressor because the compressor is already inside the unit itself. It is very useful device for those that live in an apartment or a place that can’t set the compressor outside the room. When you held a party in a big room, you can also make it as an extra backup AC beside window/split AC you’ve already set. More people come to your party will make your room hotter, that’s why more people in the room means more cooling capacity you need to prepare. In this condition, portable air conditioner will be really useful.

How to setup AC portable in my room?

I have mentioned that this device has already had compressor inside it. This compressor works to convert air into cool air by using refrigerant like others AC. This process will exhaust hot air as the residue. This is the reason why Window / Split AC has a compressor that must be placed outside the room. In portable AC, this hot air must be throwed out through hose pipe that connect to the window or ceiling. If it’s not exhausted to outside, the device will spread out hot and cool air together. Don’t worry, the process of setting it up will only  take 10-20 mins of your time.

Follow the video instruction provided by Haier below

The size of your room will determine how big the AC’s cooling capacity (BTU) you will need

So, what size portable air conditioner do I need?

Every air conditioner has their own cooling capacity that will be measured by BTU. The bigger the BTU means the device is made to cool bigger room size. Be careful, you need to carefully choose the correct size for your need. If your device have too big BTU than your room size, the AC will cycle off too quickly and leave the air with an excess humidity.  It also will cost more electricity than you ever need. On the other hand, having smaller BTU, will force the device to work hard while still not adequately cool your room.

This is a little math to help you determine correct BTU size for your room

(Area x H x I x E) / 60 = BTU size

Area ( in square feet) = width x length for a rectangle room. If your room is in custom shape, you can measure the area size using math formula to determine Area size. In example, you can measure right triangle by this formula: width x length /2

H (in feet)= Height of the room

I = 10 – 16, based on how good the insulation of the room. Well insulated room means lower number; while, not insulated room (in example: in the top floor, facing directly to the sun) will have the highest number 16.

E = score 16, if the longest wall that face outside of the house is facing north
score 17, if the longest wall that face outside of the house is facing east
score 18, if the longest wall that face outside of the house is facing south
score 20, if the longest wall that face outside of the house is facing west
(this calculation is based on tropical climate; if the room you want to cool is in the lower floor, without any wall facing directly to the outside you can use 16 as the score)


You live in tropical states such as Arizona, Nevada, California, Texas, Florida, and want to cool your lower floor that has 10 feet width, 20 feet length, 10 feet height, with a longest wall facing east. We can calculate your estimated BTU size by this = (W 10 x L 20 x H 10 x I 12 x E 17) / 60 =  6800. Well, now you can start looking for 7000 BTU Portable Air Conditioner.

Note: This calculation is a bit different than what mention. This calculation is custom made by me, because I found that many of portable air conditioner buyers are disappointed by buying not adequately BTU size, based on what energystar has mentioned in their site. I assume that their calculation are based on very well insulated room, or low ceiling room. Although my calculation may not perfect, but I am sure it will help a lot of people to choose correct BTU size for them.

Best Portable Air Conditioner Reviews 2016

Best AC Portable for Big Room up to 500 sq.ft

My Short Review
koldfront pac1401w Portable AC for a big room

Koldfront pac1401w

Though it's not a dual hose product, yet it's powerful enough to cool 700 sq.ft garage in Arizona.
The only drawback is the vent hose installment. Sometimes you need to apply duct tape to make sure the hose fit properly to the window kit.

Koldfront PAC1401W is sold in the manufacturer’s site at $679 (not include shipping). You can make a huge saving (include shipping) by buying from trusted retailer like Amazon. Check Amazon price here
dual hose portable AC

whynter 14000btu dual hose

Despite the cheap price, this Whynter dual hose portable air conditioner has included heater function that make this unit not only dual hose but also dual function. By having dual hose that separating intake and exhaust hose, you can get more electric efficiency and also increasing performance. That’s mean faster cooling with significant saving on your electricity bill. This 14000 BTU dual hose unit will handle the cooling of your big room easily.

(Check Amazon price for this unit here)
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