Best Portable Air Conditioner 2023

Frigidaire FHPH142AC1 Portable Air Conditioner (8)

As we head into the warmer months of 2023, the quest for a cool and comfortable living space becomes a top priority for many. Traditional air conditioning systems, while effective, are only sometimes the most practical solution for every household. They can be costly to install and maintain, and they may not be suitable for individuals who live in flats or rented places. Enter the world of portable air conditioners - an affordable, versatile, and efficient answer to your cooling needs. This comprehensive guide will help you navigate this expansive market and find the best portable air conditioner for your specific requirements.


Understanding Portable Air Conditioners

A portable air conditioner is a compact, movable cooling unit that can be easily installed in any room with a window. Unlike fixed units, these mobile devices don’t need permanent installation, making them ideal for people living in rented accommodations or wanting to cool different rooms at different times. They work by pulling in warm air from the room, cooling it, and then expelling it back into the room while simultaneously venting out hot air through an exhaust hose fitted to a window.

Why You Should Consider a Portable Air Conditioner

There are several strong reasons to consider purchasing a portable air conditioner:

  1. Portable ACs offer flexibility. They can be moved from room to room, depending on where you need cooling the most.
  2. They are generally more affordable and less complicated to install than traditional air conditioning systems.
  3. With ozone-depleting refrigerants like R22 phasing out, upgrading to a newer, environmentally friendly portable air conditioner could be wise.

The Top Portable Air Conditioners of the Year

Model Name BLACK+DECKER BPACT14HWT LG LP1419IVSM Frigidaire FHPH142AC1 Whynter ARC-14S
Price $499.99 $560.99 $549.00 $449.00
Amazon Rating 4.3 4.0 4.2 4.3
Capacity (Cubic Feet) 700 500 700 500
Cooling Power (BTU) 14000 14000 14000 14000
Product Dimensions 17.1"D x 28.1"W x 13.8"H ‎18.11 x 19.41 x 30.43 16.54"D x 19.4"W x 31.34"H 16"D x 19"W x 35.5"H
Weight 60.1 pounds 71 pounds 82 pounds 73 pounds
Wattage 1365 1370W 970W 1300W
Sound Level 54 53 dB 49 dB 56 dB
Air Flow Capacity (CFM) 206 233 253 222
Hose Configuration Single Hose Single Hose Single Hose Dual Hose

Number 1: BLACK+DECKER BPACT14HW Portable Air Conditioner

Buy BLACK+DECKER BPACT14HW Portable Air Conditioner on Amazon

The BLACK+DECKER BPACT14HWT is not your average portable air conditioner. It’s a powerful, efficient, and versatile device that offers significant value for money. In my experience, this air conditioning unit has proven to be an essential addition to my household, and I am thrilled to provide a review of this fantastic product. What truly stands out about the BLACK+DECKER BPACT14HWT is its impressive cooling ability.

Powered by a robust 14,000 BTU, it can efficiently cool a room of up to 350 square feet. This makes it perfect for your living room, bedroom, or small office. The unit also boasts a heat mode, a fantastic feature for those chillier days or during the transition between seasons. The remote control that comes with the BPACT14HWT is another excellent feature. It’s user-friendly and makes changing the temperature, fan speed, or control mode simple and convenient.

You don’t have to get up midway through a movie or leave your desk to adjust the settings, adding to a more effortless user experience. One of the main reasons I appreciate the BPACT14HWT is its low noise level. Nothing is more annoying than trying to sleep or concentrate on work while your air conditioner roars like a jet engine. Fortunately, this BLACK+DECKER model operates quietly, creating a peaceful environment whether you are trying to get some rest or focus on a task.

The BLACK+DECKER BPACT14HWT is surprisingly energy-efficient for a portable air conditioning unit. Not only did it help me to maintain a comfortable temperature in my home, but it also didn’t cause any significant increase in my electricity bill, which is always a bonus in any household. As for the design, this unit is sleek and modern-looking. It’s a versatile white, which should fit in well with most decors. Despite its power, it’s compact enough to fit into a corner without taking up too much space. It also includes a practical 4-wheel design that ensures easy mobility, allowing you to move it from room to room.

However, the BLACK+DECKER BPACT14HWT has its faults. The main drawback I found was the installation process. While it claims to have an easy-to-install window vent kit, I found the process somewhat tricky. The instructions could be more precise; some might need DIY knowledge to install it correctly.

Overall, the BLACK+DECKER BPACT14HWT is an excellent, high-performing portable air conditioner purchase. Despite the minor setback during the installation process, its incredible cooling and heating ability, energy efficiency, low noise level, and sleek design set this product apart from its competitors. It offers excellent value for the price and is undoubtedly worth considering if you’re in the market for a portable, reliable, and efficient air conditioning unit.

Number 2: The LG LP1419IVSM Smart Wi-Fi Portable Air Conditioner

Buy The LG LP1419IVSM Smart Wi-Fi Portable Air Conditioner on Amazon

The LG LP1419IVSM Portable Air Conditioner is a premium, high-efficiency product with many cooling features. At around $700, it certainly doesn’t come cheap. However, its high-end features and performance offer enough to justify its cost. The LP1419IVSM, first and foremost, stands out for its power and efficiency.

Boasting a BTU rating of 14,000, it can rapidly cool large spaces up to 500 square feet. The dual inverter technology is a game changer, ensuring the device operates quietly while consuming less energy. One of the critical features of this air conditioner is the smart Wi-FiWi-Fi technology. This allows you to connect it to your smartphone or Google Home/Amazon Alexa for easy and intuitive control. You can adjust the temperature, switch modes, and more right from your device with the LG ThinQ app. The LG LP1419IVSM is designed with a lot of user convenience in mind.

Thanks to the smooth-rolling caster wheels, it is portable and can quickly move from one room to another. Also, it has an easy-to-read LED display and a handy remote for easy operation. The air conditioner also doubles up as a dehumidifier, removing up to 3.1 pints of moisture per hour, keeping the air dry and fresh. Another thoughtful feature is the auto-evaporation system, which allows continuous use without emptying a water reservoir.

On the downside, there are a few concerns:

  1. The price tag is higher for portable air conditioners. For someone on a budget, there might be better options.
  2. While the unit works efficiently in terms of cooling, the exhaust hose can get quite hot, suggesting some energy inefficiency.
  3. The app interface could be more intuitive and user-friendly. Some users may need help navigating through.

The LG LP1419IVSM is not just innovative but also energy efficient. It has been designed to provide maximum cooling while consuming minimal power, reducing the impact on your wallet and the environment. Despite its small size, it provides a strong performance, making it a good choice for people looking for a blend of usefulness and energy efficiency.

In conclusion, the LG LP1419IVSM Portable Air Conditioner is a high-end, powerful, and versatile cooling solution. Its innovative features and ease of use make this model stand out. However, there might be more cost-effective options, and its energy efficiency could still be improved. It is ideal for those willing to invest in a premium device with both performance and modern, convenient features.

Number 3: Frigidaire FHPH142AC1 Portable Air Conditioner

Frigidaire FHPH142AC1 Portable Air Conditioner (2)
Frigidaire FHPH142AC1 Portable Air Conditioner (5)
Frigidaire FHPH142AC1 Portable Air Conditioner (6)
Frigidaire FHPH142AC1 Portable Air Conditioner (8)
Frigidaire FHPH142AC1 Portable Air Conditioner (9)
Frigidaire FHPH142AC1 Portable Air Conditioner (3)
Frigidaire FHPH142AC1 Portable Air Conditioner (4)
Frigidaire FHPH142AC1 Portable Air Conditioner (7)
Frigidaire FHPH142AC1 Portable Air Conditioner (1)

Buy Frigidaire FHPH142AC1 Portable Air Conditioner on Amazon

The Frigidaire FHPH142AC1 is a 14,000 BTU portable air conditioner with an outstanding balance of cooling power, features, and affordability. This unit is compact and easy to move from room to room, with built-in casters and side-carrying handles. Despite its portable size, it can effectively cool spaces up to 700 square feet, making it an excellent option for apartments, homes, offices, and more.

Three variable fan and cooling settings allow you to adapt the airflow to your needs, one of the essential advantages of this Frigidaire portable AC. It also contains an antibacterial mesh filter, which aids in the reduction of germs, smells, and other airborne pollutants. The unit doesn’t require any permanent installation but includes a window venting kit to vent the warm exhaust air outside. This is a must for optimal cooling efficiency.

One of the best aspects of this portable air conditioner is the multi-function remote control. This allows you to operate every function from across the room. You can turn the unit on or off and adjust the mode, fan speed, timer, and temperature. The digital display and electronic controls are also easy to use if you prefer to change settings on the unit manually.

This Frigidaire model stands out for its quiet operation. Even on the highest fan setting, noise levels remain under 56 decibels. This makes it well-suited for bedrooms and living spaces where you don’t want excessive noise. It also has a sleep mode that gradually increases the temperature as you sleep to save energy.

When it comes to cooling performance, this 14,000 BTU air conditioner delivers. It can cool a 700-square-foot room quickly and effectively. The 3-fan-speeds allow you to customize airflow based on the current conditions and your cooling needs. It also has a 24-hour on/off timer, so you can program it to run when needed.

One downside is that it doesn’t have an auto-evaporation system for the condensate. You’ll need to drain the water reservoir to avoid overflow periodically. The unit alerts you when the pool is full, but this is an extra maintenance step to keep in mind.

Overall, the Frigidaire FHPH142AC1 portable AC offers excellent value for the price. It provides ample cooling power, valuable features like the multi-function remote and sleep mode, and quiet operation. This Frigidaire model is an excellent choice if you need an affordable 14,000 BTU portable air conditioner for a mid-size room.

Number 4: Whynter ARC-14S Portable Air Conditioner

Buy Whynter ARC-14S Portable Air Conditioner on Amazon

The Whynter ARC-14S is intended to cool spaces up to 500 square feet, making it an ideal choice for flats, bedrooms, workplaces, and other medium-sized rooms.

One of the biggest pros of the ARC-14S is its portability. Unlike traditional window air conditioners, this unit doesn’t need to be installed in a window. It rolls easily on caster wheels, allowing you to move it from room to room. The compact size (16" W x 19" D x 35.5" H) means it won’t take up too much space wherever you place it. It’s also relatively lightweight at 80 pounds.

This Whynter air conditioner has several valuable features. It can be set up to vent hot air through the included window kit, or you can operate it in fan mode to recirculate air internally. There are three fan speeds and four modes: cool, fan, dehumidify, and auto. The digital control panel is simple to use. You can set your desired temperature between 61-89°F, and the 24-hour programmable timer allows you to schedule when the unit turns on and off.

A portable AC’s noise level averages 56 decibels on the highest fan setting. It won’t disturb most people’s sleep. The dehumidifier function helps remove excess moisture from the air during humid summer months. With a maximum dehumidification rate of 101 pints per day, this model can effectively reduce mugginess.

Installation is quick and straightforward. The window vent kit has an adjustable window slider and all necessary hardware. The exhaust hose easily attaches and detaches when moving the unit to different rooms. An automatic evaporation system eliminates the need to empty drain buckets manually.

Performance is quite good for a 14,000 BTU portable AC. It can cool spaces quickly and maintain steady temperatures. The compressor technology allows it to restart rapidly after the unit is turned on. With a power rating of 1150 watts, running costs are reasonable for a unit of this size.

On the downside, the ARC-14S is louder than some competing models when operating at higher fan speeds. It also lacks advanced features like Wi-FiWi-Fi connectivity. The remote control is basic and feels a bit cheap.

Overall, the Whynter ARC-14S is an excellent choice for a mid-sized portable air conditioner. It’s powerful enough to cool rooms up to 500 square feet efficiently. The portability is a significant advantage, allowing you to use it in any room with a window. It’s easy to set up and user-friendly. While it lacks some bells and whistles, it delivers solid performance at an affordable price. If you need a portable AC for supplemental cooling, the ARC-14S is an excellent option.

Factors to Consider When Looking for a Portable Air Conditioner

Understanding CEER Rating

One critical factor to consider when shopping for a portable air conditioner is the Combined Energy Efficiency Ratio (CEER). The rating represents the energy efficiency of the unit — the higher the CEER, the more efficient the air conditioner. An energy-efficient device will save you money on utility costs while lowering your carbon footprint.

Considering the Size and Capacity

Another critical consideration is the size and capacity of the unit. The Department of Energy recommends an average of 20 BTUs per square foot of space. However, you may need to adjust this figure based on factors like ceiling height, room insulation, and the number of people usually in the room. Remember, a unit that’s too powerful can lead to discomfort, as it won’t dehumidify the room properly, while an underpowered one may struggle to cool your space effectively.

Evaluating the Design and Ease of Installation

Dual-hose vs Single-hose Design

Portable air conditioners come in either single-hose or dual-hose designs. Single-hose units are generally more affordable and easier to install but are less energy efficient. On the other hand, dual-hose units, while slightly more complex to set up, offer better cooling efficiency and are more suitable for larger spaces.

Installation Process

The ease of installation is also a factor worth considering. Most portable air conditioners include a window installation kit, making setup a breeze. However, some models require tools or additional steps for installation. Be sure to check this before making your purchase.

How to Get the Best Deals on Portable Air Conditioners

Timing Your Purchase

Like many other household appliances, portable air conditioners often go on sale during certain times of the year. The best time to buy is usually at the end of summer or during big sales events like Black Friday or Cyber Monday. During these periods, you’ll likely score great deals on top-rated models.

Where to Buy

When purchasing a portable air conditioner, you have several options. Traditional brick-and-mortar stores like Home Depot or Lowe’s usually have a selection of units on display. Online retailers like Amazon offer a wider range of models and often have detailed customer reviews to help you make an informed decision.


Final Thoughts on Choosing the Right Portable Air Conditioner

Choosing the right portable air conditioner requires careful consideration of your specific cooling needs, budget, and the physical constraints of your space. With the correct information at your fingertips, you may make an informed decision and enjoy a cool and pleasant living environment all year. Remember, the best unit for you is one that suits your individual needs and preferences.

Making the Most of Your Portable Air Conditioner

Once you’ve chosen your ideal portable air conditioner, proper maintenance will ensure it runs efficiently for years. Regularly cleaning or changing the filters, periodically draining any collected moisture, and storing the unit properly during off-seasons will help prolong its lifespan and maintain its performance. With the proper care and attention, your portable air conditioner can help transform your living space into a cool haven, no matter how high the mercury rises outside.