The first question we often get is whether or not they are actually portable. Yes, they are mobile.
They are also a lot easier to install than their window unit counter-parts, as well as being trouble-free.
Even still, with these portable units, there has to be a window close by for venting out the hot air. Portables come with foam inserts, exhaust tubes, and have the water drained either directly outside or into a bucket.
Even the portables can be quite heavy. They can weight anywhere from 50 to 90 pounds.
Most of them come around 30″ tall, and will need somewhere between 12″ to 18″ of space. They carry energy efficiency ratings, as do most electronic devices, and selecting one with a higher rating will not only ensure better performance, but a higher electric bill as well.
Portable AC Sizes
Some portable ACs have the capacity to cool rooms that are between 150 to 200 square feet in size. These units will carry from 7500 to 8000 BTUs of power.
These are deemed to be among the most economical smaller units available. There are some that carry a separate dehumidifier and various cooling functions you can select from. You usually have your choice of 3 different cooling fan speeds, a timer, air filter, and a temperature display.
If a room has over 20 square feet of space, then you could probably use more BTUs, like a 9000 BTU unit. You can find these with features like an ion generator. They also come in 2 distinct sizes – 9500 BTUs and 11500 BTUs. Both models feature remote controls along with multiple speeds.
The later models are equipped with self-evaporating technology. You can even find units carrying 10000 BTUs of power. We really like this Honeywell MN10CESWW 10,000 BTU Portable Air Conditioner with Remote Control – White which can be purchased at Walmart or through other online merchants.
You can purchase a 10000 BTU air conditioner at Walmart that can handle rooms of 250 square feet marvelously. These have additional benefits like washable activated carbon filters, 8 hour timers, 2-speed fans, and remote controls.
To make the right choice for your particular needs, you need to consider the cumulative square footage of the rooms you want to condition. You can use the U.S. Dept. of Energy’s air conditioner size calculator for finalizing the exact strength you will need for proper cooling.
Another important consideration is style. Nobody wants an eyesore in the home, regardless of how good it works. If portability is your main concern, then the free standing air conditioners are ideal.
There are many brands and various manufacturers who have good models on the market today. The main thing is to go in armed with the right details of the spaces you want to cool. Read the labels.
Many places will let you turn one on, which lets you check out the noise level too. This can be a real pain, especially at night when you’re trying to sleep. Talk with the salesperson and ask questions. They know their products and can help you locate the right unit for your needs.