Portable Air Conditioners

Portable air conditioners are designed to cool a small space, such as a room or office, not exceeding 400 to 450 square feet. They provide the convenience of having air conditioning without the hassle of a large central unit.

Most portable air conditioners are built on wheels that allow you to roll them from room to room. They are also lightweight and fairly small in size so that it can be transported from home to office, or anywhere else you would like to take it.


Portable Air Conditioner Features

Portable air conditioners are made in single-vent systems, or for those who want even more cooling power, dual-vent systems. Most units include window and ventilation kits at no extra charge and are very easily operated. Most portable air conditioners require a window for ventilation as well as a tray to collect condensation, unless they come with a built in water pump or self-evaporation feature.

Why Portable Air Conditioners?

Portable air conditioning units offer quite a few advantages when compared to traditional central air conditioning units. Some benefits include:

  • Smaller sizes take up less space
  • More affordable pricing
  • Convenience and versatility that allow the unit to be moved from room to room
  • The ability to cool rooms with less hassle and for less money.

Portable air conditioners can be the answer for the homeowner or renter who doesn't want to make a large commitment to air conditioning, but still wants to live with the comfort of cooler air.

Window Air Conditioners

There are a few nominal differences between portable air conditioners and window air conditioners. Window air conditioners are not a good option for those concerned about using up valuable window space. However, if window space is not a consideration and affordability is a crucial factor, window air conditioners is the way to go.

Window air conditioners are also portable and capable of cooling the same area as a portable air conditioner on wheels. Also, these types of air conditioning units have direct venting, and in some cases, can perform better than some portable air conditioners.

Portable Air Conditioner Ratings

Air conditioners are rated by the number of British Thermal Units (BTU) of heat they can remove per hour. The more BTU a portable air conditioner is capable of, the greater its cooling capacity. National appliance standards require portable air conditioners built after January 1, 1990, to have an Energy Efficiency Ratio (EER) of 8.0 or greater.

Purchasing a Portable Air Conditioner

When shopping for a portable air conditioner, it is important to look for one with a self-evaporation feature or built in water pump in order to dispose of condensation automatically. This will pay off in convenience later on.

It is also important to check not only the BTU capacity, but also the EER. Select a portable air conditioner with an EER of at least 9.0 if you live in a mild climate, but if you live in a hot climate, the unit will need to have an EER of 10 or more.

Portable air conditioning units are efficient and convenient. However, if more than three rooms in your home or office are in need of cooling, then a central air conditioning unit might be easier and more cost-effective.

For more information on air conditions see the following articles from HomeDoctor.net: Air Conditioning Systems, Central Air Conditioning and Window Air Conditioners.