5 Best Portable Air Conditioner In 2020 by Consumer Reports

Often asked what is the best portable air conditioner on the market? Invariably, it means you are looking for the best air conditioning unit. Nevertheless, to answer this question we’re going to be showing you some samples of products following consumer reports.

In addition, other relevant criteria as basis to knowing which is the best among the list. For the fact that air conditioners are off different types, model and also designed by various brand. There is need to be more verse in knowledge regarding this device before choosing one for your home cooling.

If you care, our previous post on evaporative coolers is here for your consumption – even though an evaporative coolers is used to cooled air but works differently compared to AC cooling principle. As such you may want to update yourself on their differences.

Moving further, we start by introducing you to the comparison, followed by the reviews and the informative purchasing guide. Ensure you read through thoroughly because investing in an air conditioner is not a mere money to waste. You need to pick a result orienting one so as to meet indoor temperature lowering demand.

Top 5 Best Portable Air Conditioner 2020 Comparison

Honeywell MN10CESBB 10000 BTUBest Portable Air Conditioner (Reviews & Consumer Reports Guide) 2019 CHECK PRICE ON AMAZON
  • 350 – 450 sq. ft. coverage
  • Washable filter
  • 24 hr timer
  • 3 speed fan
  • Remote
  • 1,000 BTU ratings
  • Function as dehumidifier, fan and AC
Honeywell MN10CESBB 10000 BTU ACBLACK+DECKER BPACT08WT Portable Air Conditioner, 8,000 BTU CHECK PRICE ON AMAZON
  • 8,000 btu
  • Remote control
  • 150 square feet
  • 75 dB noise level
  • Function as AC, dehumidifier and fan system
LG LP1217GSR 115V Portable Air ConditionerLG LP1217GSR 115V Portable Air Conditioner with Remote Control CHECK PRICE ON AMAZON
  • Coverage of 300 square feet
  • Dehumidifier/air conditioning
  • 24-hours timer
  • Remote operation
  • 2 cooling speed and 2 speed fan
Honeywell HL14CESWB Air Conditioner
Honeywell HL14CESWB Air Conditioner, 14,000 BTU CHECK PRICE ON AMAZON
  • 14,000 BTU
  • 700 sq. feet
  • 24 hours timer
  • Three fan speed
  • Remote control
  • Window installation kits
Whynter ARC-14SH 1 Dual Hose Portable Air Conditioner
Whynter ARC-14SH 1 Dual Hose Portable Air Conditioner and Heater CHECK PRICE ON AMAZON
  • 500 square feet
  • Window or floor placement
  • 222 cfm air flow rate
  • Fan, AC and dehumidifier in a single unit

1. Honeywell MN10CESBB 10000 BTU Portable Conditioner

Best Portable Air Conditioner (Reviews & Consumer Reports Guide) 2019

There are many Honeywell portable air conditioners out there but this MN10CESBB model we saw, qualified for the number one position in this best portable air conditioning reviews. According to consumer reports tracked from the product page, over 3,700 verified users had reviewed this Honeywell MN10CESBB and 1,000 people have answered questions concerning the appliance. Above all, this unit is a nice cooling device for rooms up to 450 sq. feet.

It also important to mention the Thermal Overload protection that guarantees safety and peace of mind. No installation require unlike windows air conditioners, out of the box ready for use. It comes with a washable filter that can be clean without wasting time and regular cleaning of the filter helps sustain unit performance. This air cooler comes with 3 speed settings and energy saving time. Top of the notch, this Honeywell MN10CESBB can functional as dehumidifier, fan or air conditioning system.


  • Filter removes dust
  • Castors for easy transporting
  • Work as fan to circulate air, air conditioning and dehumidifier for up to 66 pint/ day (all round year use)
  • Designed for space not exceeding 450 sq. feet.

2. BLACK+DECKER BPACT08WT Portable Air Conditioner, 8,000 BTU

BLACK+DECKER BPACT08WT Portable AC Conditioner, 8,000 BTU

If you’re looking for an air conditioning system with a good BTU rating, Black+Decker portable AC is a recommendation. This heat cooler features Eight Thousand BTU per minutes that helps cool down heats faster when the summer sets in. The beautiful part, it can be used in different environments such as home, garage, dome, bedrooms or apartment. However only suitable in areas measuring 150 square feet and such not a good choice for bigger spaces.

The wheels installed in the AC enables easy movement across your facilities. This appliance comes with everything needed for its installation. And as such, you won’t spend extra bucks getting the accessories. This machine work in sliding or hung windows only – it cannot be used in crank windows.


  • Front side filter
  • 3-in-1 design
  • Sleep mode
  • 4 feet hose and windows kit included
  • Limited to 150 feet coverage
  • Not for crank casement windows

3. LG LP1217GSR 115V Portable Air Conditioner with Remote Control

LG LP1217GSR 115V Portable Air Conditioner with Remote Control

In this consumer reports air conditioners reviews, LG LP1217GSR 115V model is another compact unit designed to run down temperature in 300 square feet. Even as a conditioning unit, also serves as dehumidifier. This is highly needful in the summer where high humidity levels rules the day and can extracts up to 60 pint of moisture daily. This come with 24 hours timer that let you set the machine for continuous use and also allow you control temperature levels.

It come with two speed fan and two cooling speeds customization. In addition, side handles and roll over castors allow for effortless movement within your home or space. The built incorporate read out LED display including remote system for distance operation. Most relevantly, automatic swing air innovation ensures that cooled air is well circulated.


  • Nice for large rooms
  • Sleek and contemporary design
  • You lower temperature or dehumidify using this electronic home device
  • It cannot be installed on windows

4. Honeywell HL14CESWB Air Conditioner, 14,000 BTU

Honeywell HL14CESWB Conditioner, 14,000 BTU

This Honeywell HL14CESWB is another unit highlighted in the consumer reports best portable air conditioner for indoor temperature cooling. Although costly but has the highest British thermal unit up to 14,000 BTU heat cooling per hour. While the previous products lacks the capacity for window mounting, this Honeywell SWB can be installed on windows conveniently. It supports horizontal or vertical window placement and comes fully with the installation kits.

The large area coverage of 700 square is another anesthetics that places it ahead of all the reviewed products here. Even as a dehumidifier, there is no bucket to empty – easily attached the continuous hose to it to free your from unnecessary condensation empty. Safety desire is also met, thanks to the automatic shut off and timer settings that let you custom unit working duration before turning off.


  • High btu power
  • Vertical or horizontal window placement
  • Larger space heat cooling or dehumidification
  • Expensive compared to the rest units

5. Whynter ARC-14SH 1 Dual Hose Portable Air Conditioner and Heater

Whynter ARC-14SH 1 Dual Hose Portable Air Conditioner and Heater

Whyntter ARC takes the fifth position regarding the best portable air conditioning discussion. It is designed to power space of 500 square feet at maximum. This model combines carbon filter for air filtering thereby leaving you with cleaner air. The beautiful average height unit boast of thermostat adjustment from 60 – 80 Fahrenheit cooling degree and 61 – 77 degree F heating.

According to Good Housekeeping, Whynter is the best portable AC sold so far in this 2019 and also Consumer Reports said, Whynter ARC-14SH has the highest rating score in their archive early this year 2019. The aforementioned Names are big brands in home cooling/heating appliance in the reviews industry. Going with their findings, we say this machine is our best portable conditioner showcase.

The features also includes programmable timer, pre washable filter, apart from the carbon filter and also remote system. The window mountable air conditioner comes packed with the complete installation sets. But if you decide to use it directly on the floors, there are castors for quick transporting. The dehumidifying capacity is 110 pints in 24 hours even most dedicated dehumidifiers comes with lesser value of 70 pints daily.  Below are the ups and draw back to note.


  • 500 coverage square feet
  • Floor or window mounting
  • Pre filter and activated carbon filter
  • Costly
  • Bulky size

What BTU level is best for you

Many factors account for this. Most especially the size of the room, followed by the climate condition. In sizing a portable or windows ac for homes, you can follow this chart started below:

  • 1,200 cubic ft. = 7,500 BTU’s ideal for 150 square feet x 8 feet ceiling
  • 1,600 cubic ft. = 9,000 BTU’s ideal for 200 square feet x 8 feet ceiling
  • 2,400 cubic ft. = 10,000 BTU’s ideal for 300 square feet x 8 feet ceiling
  • 3,200 cubic ft. = 12,000 BTU’s ideal for 400 square feet x 8 feet ceiling
  • 3,600 cubic ft. = 13,000 BTU’s ideal for 450 square feet x 8 feet ceiling
  • 4,000 cubic ft. = 14,000 BTU’s ideal for 500 square feet x 8 feet ceiling       

Types of Air Conditioners on the Market

In buying an air conditioning system, it’s worth knowing the various categories so as to compare the one that will work best for you. In order word, if this is your first time of wanting to purchase the appliance of discussion, updating yourself with the types is necessary. Here is the list of the several models:

  • Window air conditioners: These are installed on a window vent and they’re simple to use. They are often called rooms AC. However it comes with two separates parts such as the back end that absorbs heat from inside while the front end cools the room. This type also has louver that can be adjusted for air flow direction control for optimal comfort. Before now, they’re manually operated but thanks to improvement in technology, there’re now remote-able models.
  • Split air conditioner systems: They are similar to the window model as they come with both outside and inside unit. Their use is more popular due to the reduced noise level they produce compared to window are conditioners. The indoor part is consist of air filter and the cool air blower while the outdoor part consists of condenser coil, compressor including a capillary tubing. No detailed installation require, joining of wires and tube connection all what is needed.
  • Ductless split mini portable or systems: These also comes like the mentioned air conditioners units. Typically the connection is different compare to window air conditioning types – only small wall mount section is drilled. The upside of this type of air conditioner is the small and standalone design that allows for individual room cooling or heating but their energy efficiency rate is questionable.  
  • Central air conditioners: This works with a principle of supply and return-air movement. Cooled air is forced out of the duct system into your enclosed space. When the released air becomes hot, it flows back into the unit for recycling before returning as chilled air. Central air systems are highly patronized because they can maintain the temperature of an entire house – that’s why they are referred to as whole house air conditioners system. Unfortunately, they’re not energy saving but due to the whole house cooling capacity, it is better to secure one than investing on several single room units.

How Does Air Conditioner Works? 

The process of cooling a house with AC requires you getting an air conditioning system. We’ve looked at the various air conditioner types above and this section focused on the working mechanism.

AC is not like an evaporative cooler that uses water and fan to cool hot air. This appliance uses a chemical called refrigerant to lower temperature. This refrigerant is converted from gaseous form into liquid in a repeated cycle. The chemical however removes the heat inside your house and transport it outside.   

Recall, the following components such as the evaporator, the condenser and the compressor are the key parts that make up an AC. These mentioned features enables the device to work in cooling your property. Both the compressor and the condenser are placed outside the building – they’re the ones responsible for removing hot air from the house. While the evaporator which conveys the cool air into your atmosphere is installed inside.

The Best Portable Air Conditioner Buying Guide

Portable air conditioners are nice alternative for those who may not like the idea of windows AC installation due to cost of installing. They are also adorable in terms of mobility from one room to another within a facility. One of the greatest likes for portable units, some models can be used for smaller or personal spaces while others are just as powerful like the windows types, cooling larger rooms.

Peradventure you want the best portable ac for your house, many things needs to be considered for choosing the right choice. To help you further in the determination of the best portable air conditioner for indoor cooling, we’ve structured the below criteria as a purchasing guide.

1. What power size do you need?

A typical portable unit has the capacity to cool spaces up to 100 square feet. Nonetheless if your aim is a unit that can keep you cool within a personal space or desk, investing on something bigger will be a waste of resources and will consumes more energy. Consequently, a lesser product will be another concerned. However, before deciding on a unit, it’s necessary to know how large the place to be cooled.

British thermal unit is usually referred to as BTU – It is the unit of measurement that determines how powerful the AC is. This means a large sized room require a higher BTU rating and vice versa. For example, 5000 btu is a perfect value for space of 100 – 150 square feet while spaces up to 1,000 requires up to 20,000 btu’s as the best portable air conditioner respectively.

Another vital thing to be aware of, is the efficiency ratio. This is known as Energy Efficiency Rating (EER) – Meaning BTU space cooling over the energy being used. EER ratio is measured in Wattage. Nevertheless, higher EER ratio means a better energy saving efficiency.

2. Settings and customization

Sure it is nice to purchase a device that meets your personal demands. So it’s wise to go for an AC that offers the right customizing need. To learn more about this, here are basic things to note.

  • Fan speed: The best portable air conditioner should possess variable fan speed controls. Sometimes you may not need to use the air conditioner function, running only the fan is enough to keep the room comfortable. More so, different speed levels is also ideal to manage noise level. For instance, if the device has up to 3 fan speed levels such as high, medium or low. For a reduced noise suitable for night sleep, it makes sense to go with Low speed but cooling efficiency rate may not be as powerful compared to the highest speed. But this definitely improve quality of sleep.
  • Timer: A programmable timer allows you set when the air conditioner is to switch on/off. This saves lots of stress of turning on or off every time. It also makes it ready for use at any time. This also helps conserve energy.
  • Filter: This is an essential component as it add up to boost units cooling performance while minimizing energy utilization. However a schedule filter maintenance such as cleaning and replacement needs to be practice.
  • Temperature range: All portable ac don’t operate at the same temperature level because every unit has its own power capacity. Double checking for this feature and knowing the limits for the products you intend picking whether it has a satisfying temperature range you want is paramount.
3. Remote control

Recalling, from this consumer reports air conditioners, if you took your time to read each reviews, you would’ve noticed, all the refrigerant air cooling system reviewed are remote enabled. Hence, it is easier to operate a portable air conditioner from anywhere within home property compare to manual method.  Having to stand up every time especially getting up from bed to operate the ac is really work, as such, choosing a unit with a remote is worth the price.

4. Portability

Even though we are talking about portable ac system, it doesn’t mean all unit are portable enough to move across your house. Generally all portable units comes with mobility castors but the size still varies. This is where you need to specifically check the unit dimension and weight inclusive. There is no need getting a bulky product that’s difficult to move when need arises.

5. Warranty

Does the portable air conditioner has a warranty? Make sure the preferred one is back up with warranty. This act as cover aftermarket purchase should anything goes wrong or what you ordered is not what you’re getting then you can simply return it. It is also worth knowing that guarantee can either be limited or complete one. In addition, check for coverage duration, anything less than a year is worth not the offer.


Are portable air conditioners worth it?
Judging from the perspective of how it does cool you down when the home is hot, then the worth of an air conditioner is highly justified. Unless you have alternative way to cool your space.
Is it cheaper to leave air conditioner on all day?
Leaving your ac on all day long is a choice. Continuous operation ensures indoor atmosphere remains cools. To answer the question out rightly, an energy rated air conditioner is cheaper to run to non-energy rated. If your desire is to run the appliance all through the day, purchase an energy sufficient model. Also check for unit with auto features that turn off once temperature reaches a comfortable level and also turns on when room air is getting hot.
Is turning ac on and off bad?
Neither Yes or No. if your machine lacks automatic turn off when home is filled up with chilled air, it’s not a bad thing to turn it off nor turn it on when you feel hot. Nevertheless, a balance should be strike because frequent on/off can affect the button – for manual operation.
Can you running an air conditioner with windows open?
For evaporative coolers, it is possible to run it while your windows opened. But for air conditioning units, they use refrigerant and such if doors or windows are open, the output will escape outside leaving you with inefficient cooling cycle. So it is not good to open windows while running the appliance.
Can I use a portable air conditioner in a room without window access?
Off course, Yes. This device is even designed for enclosed spaces for it to work optimally and that’s why we said earlier that window should be close during AC operation.

Final Verdict

Choosing the best portable air conditioner with the above shared information is an express thing. This is what we’ve done and your decision regarding this information determines which product from our consumer report best portable air conditioner reviews will follow you home. Perhaps, not realistic for you to pick out of the list, no worries, here is the recommendation Honeywell MN10CESBB 10000 BTU Portable Conditioner from the list.    

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