Small Portable Air Conditioner
This compact PAC combines streamlined looks with top build quality to deliver effective cooling and a great price. It also has a programmable 24-hour timer.
It monitors your room’s temperature and humidity, then automatically adjusts the airflow. It’s one of our best rated small portable ACs. It’s a great choice for a dorm room or camper.
A portable air conditioner is an easy way to cool a single room without complex installation. Most are smaller and more affordable than window air conditioning units and work well in homes with neighborhood restrictions on ACs or windows too small for window units.
Portable air conditioners are sized in BTU (British Thermal Unit). This measurement describes how quickly an appliance can cool down a given space, and you can use our sq ft to btu converter to determine what size appliance you need for your space. You don’t want an air conditioner that is too big, since it wastes energy and makes your utility bill higher than necessary.
If you’re cooling a space that’s especially humid, consider one of our smallest portable air conditioners, the Bouge RV Portable Air Conditioner. It has a compact design that works in spaces as small as a four-man tent, and it comes with a vented window kit. It also dehumidifies and has three operating modes and a timer.
Another option is a Forest Air portable mini-split. This model has a separate outdoor and indoor unit that connects through a permanent 10-foot hose. This type of air conditioner is much more efficient than a portable air conditioner, and it removes more moisture, too — 2.7 pints per hour versus just 1 pint per hour for most of our models.
The best small portable air conditioners offer a lot of convenience, especially for those who live in apartments or studio apartments that don’t have central air conditioning. Typically, these Small Portable Air Conditioner models include a window kit and exhaust hose that fits into most standard windows, so you can easily self-install the cooling system in your home. Some models even have heater settings, so you can use them in winter as well as summer.
Like any air conditioning unit, these devices work by pulling in the room’s air, transferring heat from it to the unit through evaporator coils, and then blowing the cool, dehumidified air back into the room. They also feature various operational modes, such as automatic, fan-only, or dehumidify (which draws out moisture and expels it through the exhaust hose) so that you can choose exactly how comfortable you want your space to be.
In addition to the cooling and heating modes, some units come with a deodorizing filter to reduce odors in the air. They also usually have a timer, so you can preset them to turn on and off in half-hour increments, which saves energy by not leaving them running all day. If you’re looking for an additional level of convenience, find a portable air conditioner that is compatible with smart home systems and voice assistants, such as Amazon Alexa or Google Assistant, so you can control it with your voice.
Whether you live in an apartment that lacks central air or a house with an old AC, or you need supplemental cooling during hot weather, portable air conditioners are a great solution. Some models use an energy-efficient design, so you’ll pay less to cool your home.
A basic portable air conditioner works by transferring heat from the room to the outside air. This process requires three key components:
The unit takes in stale, hot, and humid air through a tube connected to a cold metal coil. The refrigerant gas in the coil lowers the temperature of the incoming air, and the cooler air carries away any heat in the room. The cooling process also reduces the amount of moisture in the air, and the resulting water vapor drips down the coil to be collected.
Some models like this Midea model feature a double-hose system that improves efficiency by reducing the amount of condensed water that has to be emptied into the drain. This model also has a remote control, I Sense sensor that monitors room conditions and adjusts settings, Sleep Mode, auto-swing, and a 24-hour programmable timer. It removes 1.2 liters of water per hour and is easy to clean with a washable filter.
Most home appliances require some level of maintenance for optimum performance and longevity. Air conditioners are no different. They must be drained and cleaned regularly to prevent clogging or other malfunctions.
One of the first steps in cleaning a portable air conditioner is emptying its collection tank. As the air conditioner cools the air, it will condense water from the atmosphere and drain into the tank. Depending on your climate, this container may need to be emptied daily or weekly. The easiest way to do this is by removing the drain spout cap and letting the water flow into a container.
Another important element of cleaning a portable air conditioner is to wipe down its exterior case. This will remove dust and other particles that could clog working parts. You should also wipe down the exhaust hose each time you use it.
Some manufacturers include a pre-filter in the device to extend the Small Portable Air Conditioner life of the internal air filter and keep it from becoming too dirty. This should be wiped down each week or every other week to prevent it from becoming overly clogged.
Most portable air conditioners vent out the exhaust hose through a window kit that will sit in a traditional windowpane. While it is tempting to modify the hose length, we do not recommend this as it can void the warranty and cause the unit to overheat or not work properly.