Best Portable Air Conditioners for 2018

If you have made up your mind you want a portable air conditioner to keep cool this summer, I'll help you compare the best models of 2018 in a review that will make it easier for you to find the one that you want that suits your needs and your pocket.

There are loads of great brands and models to choose from, but getting the closest match to fit with what and where you're going to be using it most is a good place to start. So I'll start by setting out a few points that you'll need to consider.

Cost, Efficiency, Output

best portable air conditionerThe three main aspects that attract buyers to certain free standing AC models are the purchase cost; the unit's efficiency at maximizing every watt of electricity and turning it into cooling air; and the unit's output capability or how much cold air it can throw out and what size room it can keep cool. Other things tend to have a lower level of attractiveness, like looks, accessories, ease of use, size and weight etc, but these do factor into a potential buyer's considerations nevertheless.

Naturally, the top priority of any buyer is how much they're going top spend and making sure it's the lowest price they can find. After that, you're going to be concerned about how much power the unit will use to keep you cool and then how large a space it can get the temperature down to a comfortable level. These factors contribute to what the customer sees as the "best" model or device, so it's important that these factors are made very clear before you get out your credit card and make the purchase.

The Top Rated Portable Air Conditioners

Let's take a look at the latest, coolest AC models for this year and compare them on price, output and economy, features and usability where relevant.

10k BTU Models

Honeywell MN10CESWW


Click on the model to read my review.

14k BTU Models

Honeywell MM14CCS

Click on the model to read my review.

The Place for a Portable AC

It's important to plan ahead by being pretty certain what you need a portable AC for and where its going to be situated and used most of all.

From the largest to even the smallest portable air conditioner units are fitted with casters to make them easy to wheel around. So as long as you situate a unit on one floor of a building, you'll find it pretty easy to move from room to room as needed.

Calculating AC Power Output Needs

As I mentioned above, you'll need to know the area of the room an AC unit will be mostly used in so that you can buy a suitable model with enough power to keep the room cool. It can be false economy to buy a low powered unit to cool a large room, because often an underpowered machine will struggle to keep the temperature low enough and will often use more power in its struggle than a higher rated model.

It's fairly easy to work out what you need using this simple formula:

C x T x 0.133 = BTUs

(Where: C = cubic feet, T = temperature decrease in degrees Fahrenheit)

As a simple example, if you have a room of 1,000 cu ft, you need to reduce the indoor temperature by 10 degrees, you'll need 1,000 x 10 x 1.33 = 13,300 BTU.

There are some really good 14,000 BTU models to choose from that are perfect for chilling an average size room and keeping it at a comfortable temperature when it's searing hot outside. Check out the models above to see which one fits your needs and satisfies your room dimensions, layout and color scheme.

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