The Best Low Wattage Portable Air Conditioners
AT A GLANCE
Cooling down in the summer is always a struggle. Fans just don’t seem to do the trick and only circulate the same stale air, which eventually gets warm and ineffective.
With an air conditioner, you avoid those issues.
The problem is, however, that regular wall mounted air conditioners are not only expensive to buy and install, but they’re usually expensive to run. Not to mention that if you rent your home, you might not have the freedom to have one installed.
This is where portable air conditioners come in handy.
How many watts does a portable AC use?
The average portable air conditioner uses between 1200W – 1400W. It’s all dependent on model, BTU and how many square feet the unit covers.
If you live in a hot area of the world, it’s not unheard of to keep your ac running for hours on end, and this won’t be cheap in the long run.
So if you’re looking for a new portable ac unit, you should be looking for models that operate at 1000W and under.
Are portable air conditioners expensive to run?
They can be, depending on the model you choose. The more powerful the unit, the more energy it will drain, and thus the more it will cost to run.
How much will a portable AC raise my electric bill?
Let’s say your portable ac is 1200W, and you use it every day for 3 hours, at $0.20 per kWh (average rate across the US), that’s $0.76 per day – $22.80 per month.
This might not seem like a huge amount, but depending on how long you keep it on, and how powerful your unit is, you could incur much higher costs.
The selection of portable air conditioners we have for you today are some of the lowest wattage ac systems on the market, all 1050W and below. Getting one of these will go some way in keeping your utility costs down.
The 5 Most Energy-efficient Portable Air Conditioners
TOSOT Portable Air Conditioner
SIZE: 11.8 x 15.4 x 30.4 inches
MAX AREA: 300sq.ft
The TOSOT Portable Air Conditioner is a compact 3-in-1 device that can cool, dehumidify and ventilate your room.
With an exhaust hose that extends up to 58.8 inches, this unit is easy to install and can be used on both horizontal and vertical windows.
The TOSOT Portable Air Conditioner features a remote control for convenience, and the digital display control panel is simple to use.
The built-in timer allows you to control how long the device runs for, meaning you can set it to switch off during the night, and you won't have to worry about your electricity bill.
There are 3 modes to choose from: cool, dry and fan, plus a reusable, washable air filter.
Night Mode turns off all lights on the system, meaning you can sleep in peace.
The dehumidifier removes 1.1 liters of water from the air per hour.
Pro: Comes with all the accessories you need, and requires only the most basic tools to set up.
Con: Louder than most air conditioners on this list. If you're a light sleeper, this might bother you.
Honeywell Compact Portable Air Conditioner with Dehumidifier & Fan
SIZE: 16.3 x 13.6 x 28 inches
MAX AREA: 350sq.ft
**Lowest watt portable air conditioner on our list**
The ETL certified Honeywell Compact Portable Air Conditioner is a 3-in-1 air conditioner, dehumidifier and fan.
It's packed with all the accessories you need for effortless installation: window kit with adjustable window bracket, insulation foam tape, drain pan and drain tube.
The dual dust filtration function extends the life of the product by keeping the internal system clean.
The intelligent digital thermostat system comes with a timer that lets you set and forget it; and the energy-saving sleep mode means no sky high electricity bills from overuse while you sleep.
The remote control gives you even more freedom from anywhere in the room, and the dual drainage mode for the dehumidifier means no emptying of the water tank – you can run it continuously.
There are wheels on the unit that make it a breeze to move around the house.
Pro: Cools quickly and does so a lot quieter than other models.
Con: The design of the remote control isn't very good, and you could end up accidentally pressing the wrong settings.
BLACK+DECKER BPP06WTB Portable Air Conditioner
SIZE: 17.32 x 13.2 x 27.2 inches
MAX AREA: 250sq.ft
The BLACK+DECKER BPP06WTB Air Conditioner is the perfect solution for rooms that are up to 250 square feet.
The 3-in-1 design allows you to use it as an air conditioner, fan and dehumidifier. It’s also compact and portable – the handles and castors make transporting around the house easy.
With its touch controls, LCD remote control and 24-hour timer, controlling your comfort has never been easier. At the coolest setting, this neat device can cool to 61°F.
Installing couldn't be easier. You get the complete window kit that includes: foam seal, slider bracket, air exhaust hose (4.11 inches), hose inlet and outlet, 2 locking screws, and a drain hose for continuous draining of the dehumidifier.
The window fixture will fit windows between 27.5 inches – 47.2 inches wide, which should be suitable for most homes.
The BPP06WTB also features a reusable filter and a long power cord. Plus, the dehumidifier will collect up to 60 pints of water every day.
For the super environment conscious among you, you'll be pleased to know that this air conditioner contains a mere 7.9 ounces of refrigerant, making it very ozone layer friendly.
Pro: Cools a room quickly, doesn't make too much noise, and has an auto shut-off function.
Con: The window fixture and vent hose are a little flimsy and might get detached, and the blue lights on the unit are so bright at night that you might have to cover them.
MIDEA 3-in-1 Portable Air Conditioner, Dehumidifier and Fan
SIZE: 13 x 17.1 x 28.3 inches
MAX AREA: 175sq.ft
As with the other models on our list, the Midea Portable Air Conditioner is a multi-functional device featuring air conditioner, fan and dehumidifier all in one compact design.
The ac can cool up to 62°F and features easy to use controls with a 24-hour timer allowing you to set the time, mode and temperature just how you like it. The device will beep once the dehumidifier tank is full.
This portable air conditioner has wheels and carrying grooves which make it easy to move from room to room.
This unit is easy to install and includes a window kit and 5-foot exhaust hose. It will fit windows between 26.5 – 48 inches wide.
The reusable filter is easy to clean, and the remote control includes batteries.
Pro: Cools larger space than advertised.
Con: The dehumidifier tank fills up quickly and will have to be emptied often.
SereneLife 3 in 1 Portable Electric Air Conditioner
SIZE: 14.6 x 13.8 x 27.2 inches
MAX AREA: 215sq.ft
The SereneLife 3 in 1 Portable Electric Air Conditioner is a lightweight, multi-functional device that can be used to cool your room or home, circulate the air and remove excess moisture from the atmosphere.
It features a 24 hour timer and a remote control so you can change settings from anywhere in the room.
You can adjust the fan speed and temperature using the touch control panel with LED display. The window attachment kit that's included makes installation effortless.
There are 3 operating modes to choose from. Additionally, the sleep mode and quiet motor reduce the sound of the device so your sleep won't be disrupted.
The wheels make this unit easy to transport around the house.
The dehumidifier removes 1.2 liters of moisture from the air per hour. Plus you can select which unit you want to use – Fahrenheit and Celsius.
The filter is removable & washable.
Pro: Has great reach; cools more than the stated square feet, and does so quickly.
Con: It doesn't come with all the tools you need for installation.
What is BTU in air conditioning?
BTU is an acronym for British Thermal Unit. In relation to air conditioning, BTU is a measurement that shows how much heat an ac system can remove from a room in your home.
Naturally, the higher the number, the more powerful the appliance, and the more space it will be able to cool.
It’s important to know the BTU of a particular air conditioner as you’ll be able to determine whether or not it will be suitable for the size of the space you plan to use it in.
Are portable air conditioners energy efficient?
Compared to window units, yes, portable air conditioners are energy efficient.
Portable air conditioners cool each room individually without having to circulate the cooled air throughout the house at high speeds using central cooling units mounted on ceilings.
This means that electricity won’t be wasted as you’ll only be cooling the room that you’re in.
You still need to be mindful of how you use your device, as buying a larger/more powerful unit for a small space would be overkill and would, essentially, cancel out the energy efficiency.
Does a portable air conditioner need a window? Does it pull air from outside?
The heat that the AC unit draws from the room has to be expelled somewhere, so there must be some kind of ventilation. Through a window is the easiest option, though because you’re free to put the exhaust hose anywhere, you could, in theory, position it in a hallway or another room. This is not advised, however.