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The 8 Best Portable Air Conditioners For 2021

Portable AC with Less Noise? - The 8 Quietest & Best AC Units You Can Buy

Looking for the best portable air conditioners on the market?  If so, you’ve definitely come to the right place as this guide will walk you through the best and quietest portable air conditioner choices for your home, office, or RV.

While central air and window air conditioners are great, they aren’t suitable for every situation or every budget. In some cases, choosing one of the best portable air conditioners on the market is the better choice for cooling down small to medium-sized areas.

What is the best portable air conditioner to buy?  In our opinion, the Whynter ARC-14S air conditioner is the best choice for most homeowners.

What is a Portable Air Conditioner – How Does It Work?

A portable air conditioner is similar to a window air conditioner, however, a portable air conditioner can easily be moved (on wheels) to any additional rooms where it may be required.  Using normal electrical household current and a simple heat exhaust hose, portable air conditioners exhaust warm air outside, while introducing refrigerated cold air into any room.

Portable AC units come in different sizes, are homeowner friendly, do not require an outdoor condenser, special wiring, or other professional installation.



Editor’s ChoiceRunner UpBest Value
Whynter ARC-14S 14,000 BTU Dual Hose Portable Air Conditioner, Dehumidifier, Fan with Activated Carbon Filter Plus Storage Bag for Rooms up to 500 sq ft, Platinum and BlackSereneLife Air Conditioner, 12,000 BTU + HEAT, WhiteBlack + Decker BPACT10WT Portable Air Conditioner, 10,000 BTU
Whynter ARC-14S 14,000 BTU Dual Hose Portable Air Conditioner, Dehumidifier, Fan with Activated Carbon Filter Plus Storage Bag for Rooms up to 500 sq ft, Platinum and BlackSereneLife Air Conditioner, 12,000 BTU + HEAT, WhiteBlack + Decker BPACT10WT Portable Air Conditioner, 10,000 BTU
Price not available$449.99$379.99


We’ve scoured through the best manufacturers and determined the top portable ac models on the market today. In this list, you’ll find the key features, advantages of each of these Portable AC units, and the top-rated portable air conditioner reviews.



Editor’s Pick:   Whynter ARC-14S Portable Air Conditioner

Whynter ARC-14S 14,000 BTU Dual Hose Portable Air Conditioner, Dehumidifier, Fan with Activated Carbon Filter Plus Storage Bag for Rooms up to 500 sq ft, Platinum and Black

Topping our list as the overall best portable air conditioners is the Whynter ARC-14S. Providing the benefits of a very powerful air conditioner, dehumidifier, and air purifier, The Whynter is perfect for making your home more comfortable and healthier throughout the year.

Whether you need a considerable temperature reduction or just want to take the dampness out of your air, this unit from Whynter has you covered.

Key features of this product include:

14,000-BTU cooling capacity
Auto draining – All moisture fully exhausted using the Cooling function
Dual hoses
Cools up to 500 square feet
Remote control included
Comes with storage bag

Reviewers find that this portable air conditioner from Whynter produces cold air, distributes it well throughout a reasonably large area, and doesn’t make too much noise in the process. Many buyers are also quite happy with its ease of use, especially when it comes to changing the air filter.

The Patented “Auto Draining” feature, which exhausts all condensation while using the A/C feature, eliminating the need to empty a drain pan.  Note, however, when using the Dehumidifier function, you will need to empty the provided drain pan.

Although this air conditioner is only rated for 500 square feet, some users note that they have used it in larger spaces with excellent results.

One issue some people have run into is that this unit isn’t powerful enough to provide sufficient cooling in rooms that are either poorly insulated or that have too much sunlight coming in through the windows and heating up the area.

While users’ lack of insulation problem is more involved, a simple curtain or some drapes can solve the problem of the sun heating up the room and allow the air conditioner to do its job without having to fight the effects of the sun.

“Editor’s Pick” :   Whynter




Runner Up:  Serene Life 12,000-BTU Portable Air Conditioner + Heater

SereneLife Air Conditioner, 12,000 BTU + HEAT, White

Coming in second in our portable ac reviews is the Serene LIFE 12,000-BTU Portable Air Conditioner. Like the ARC-14S, this model acts as both an air conditioner and a dehumidifier, though it does not include air purification technology.  However, The Serene LIfe unit includes a Heating option!  It is also an excellent option for somewhat larger spaces.

Key features of this product include:

12,000-BTU cooling and Heating capacity
Single Hose
Cools or heats up to 500 square feet
Remote control included
Built-in 100-pint dehumidifier

People who have purchased this portable air conditioner find it to be an excellent fit for uses ranging from providing extra cooling in a bedroom to being the sole air conditioner in small apartments.

Frequently cited advantages of this model include its excellent cooling capacity and relatively quiet operation. Several buyers have also commented on this air conditioner’s value, as it is priced very reasonably for the features and capabilities it offers.

The only real downside to this portable air conditioner is the fact that it is a single hose rather than a dual-hose model. Dual hose models tend to cool down rooms a bit more quickly and are more efficient at removing warm air.

However, the Serene LIFE unit makes up for its single-hose quite well with its excellent cooling capabilities.

“Runner-Up”:  SERENE LIFE 




Best Value:  BLACK + DECKER 10,000-BTU Portable Air Conditioner

Black + Decker BPACT10WT Portable Air Conditioner, 10,000 BTU

If you’re looking for a quiet portable air conditioner at a great price point, the BLACK + DECKER 10,000-BTU Portable Air Conditioner may be a good option for you. With ample cooling capabilities for rooms up to 250 Square Feet, and very user-friendly features, this model stands out as the best value on our list.

Key features of this product include:

10,000-BTU cooling capacity
Single Hose
Cools up to 250 square feet
Remote control included
Built-in dehumidifier

Most people who have bought and used this unit find that it quickly cools down small spaces and does a reasonably good job of keeping up with the heat. As you might expect, several reviews also mention the fact that this BLACK + DECKER product is an excellent value for the money.

One slight issue that some users have found with this air conditioner is the fact that the sliding plastic adjuster for mounting the hose into a window isn’t as sturdy as it might be. 

Overall, we found the Black + Decker Portable 10,000 BTU to be the Best Portable AC for the money.

“Best Value” Portable AC  – Black + Decker




Best Portable AC With Heater: BLACK + DECKER 14,000-BTU Portable Air Conditioner + 11,000-BTU Heater

Black + Decker 7,500 BTU Portable Air Conditioner with Heat, 14,000 w, White

For people with limited space or who just don’t want to invest in two separate pieces of equipment, having a combination portable air conditioner and heater in one unit can be a huge convenience.

This model from BLACK + DECKER offers good heating and cooling capacity for any space up to 350 Square Feet, as well as the ability to act as a Fan and Dehumidifier.

Key features of this product include:

14,000-BTU cooling capacity
11,000-BTU heating capacity
For use in spaces of up to 350 square feet
Built-in dehumidifier
Programmable digital controls
Remote control included

Reviews of this model highlight both its quiet operation and its ability to quickly cool down spaces when used in air conditioner mode. Likewise, it is a reasonably efficient and fast-acting heater when used to warm up a room.

Although it isn’t truly a compact model, it is reasonably small, allowing it to be used in cramped rooms without taking up an excessive amount of floor space.

One downside that is associated with this model is the weatherstripping that is provided for insulating the window into which its hose is fed. According to some reviewers, the material that comes with the air conditioner isn’t as durable as it could be and is prone to breaking.

However, this problem can be easily fixed by getting some commercially available residential weatherstripping material and using it in place of the weatherstripping that comes with the unit.

Best Portable “A/C Unit with a Heater” – Black + Decker




Looking For The Quietest Portable Generator For Camping This Summer – Check Out Our Review For The “Best Portable Generators” Sold on Amazon:


Best Portable AC for Rooms up to 700 Square Feet: HONEYWELL 14,000-BTU Portable Air Conditioner

If you want to cool a larger space, the HONEYWELL 14,000-BTU Portable Air Conditioner may be the best portable air conditioner for your needs. This unit acts as an air conditioner, dehumidifier, and fan and features the quality and durability buyers have come to expect from the HONEYWELL brand.

Key features of this product include:

14,000-BTU cooling capacity
Built-in dehumidifier
Cools up to 700 square feet
3 fan speed settings
Dual filtration system

Most reviews of this unit have been extremely positive, with many buyers highlighting both its ability to cool down larger spaces rapidly and its lack of excessive noise when running.

Easy setup is also mentioned as a benefit of the HONEYWELL product as a significant advantage. Most users are happy with the appearance of the air conditioner, which HONEYWELL has designed to have a modern feel that fits well in most homes.

One disadvantage of this particular unit is its size. While not overly massive, this portable air conditioner is a bit bigger than several of its competitive models. The size, however, almost certainly won’t be a problem for you unless you’re trying to use it in an unusually small or cramped room, in which case the next AC unit on this list will likely be a better choice.

Best Portable AC for Rooms up to 700 Sq. Ft. – Honeywell




Best Compact AC for Rooms up to 200 Square Feet: SereneLife 8,000-BTU Portable Air Conditioner

SereneLife SLPAC8 8,000 BTU Portable Air Conditioner, 3-in-1 Floor AC Unit with Built-In Dehumidifier, Fan Modes, Remote Control, Complete Window Mount Exhaust Kit for Rooms Up to 225 Sq. ft, White

For very compact spaces, like workshops – this best small portable air conditioner from SereneLife is a great option to provide quick cooling without forcing you to pay for more cooling capacity than you need.

At the same time, this portable air conditioner is a well-made product that won’t disappoint in the quality department.

Key features of this product include:

8,000-BTU cooling capacity
Cools up to 200 square feet
Built-in dehumidifier
Digital control panel
Remote control included

Reviews of this SereneLife air conditioner highlight its effectiveness in cooling down bedrooms to make them comfortable at night, as well as its overall quality. Value is also another plus associated with this model since it comes in at one of the lower price points among portable air conditioners.

One slight problem some people may have with this unit is its weight. Despite being quite compact, the air conditioner weighs a bit over 45 pounds, making it somewhat difficult to move around quickly.

While this won’t be a significant issue for most users, it’s worth keeping in mind if you plan to use it in an upstairs bedroom and will have to carry it up a flight of stairs.

Serene Life – Best Portable AC unit for up to 200 Square Feet




Cheapest Portable AC –  Midea Portable AC/Fan/Dehumidifier

MIDEA MAP08R1CWT 3-in-1 Portable Air Conditioner, Dehumidifier, Fan, for Rooms up to 150 sq ft, 8,000 BTU (5,300 BTU SACC) control with Remote

If you’re traveling, it can be helpful to have an air conditioner on the go with you. That’s why this 4-in-1 model from Halo fun is an excellent option for people who find themselves on the road frequently and why it rounds out our list of portable ac reviews.

With a rechargeable mobile power supply option and its compact size, you can use this unit practically anywhere. Key features of this product include:

  • Includes Window Kit with Hose for AC Use
  • Combination air conditioner, fan, or dehumidifier
    5,300 BTU rated Air Conditioner
  • Includes Remote Control
  • 24 Hour “Adjustable” Timer
  • Washable Filter

Buyers who have reviewed the Midea Air Conditioner find it ideal for use in smaller rooms (150 sf or less) home offices, bedrooms.

Boasting 5,300 BTU’s the Midea portable AC unit is no slouch when it comes to cooling small spaces, and with a portable remote control, you control the temperature from where you sit.

Although it’s considered a small portable air conditioner, most users find the Midea air conditioner does a great job of keeping small rooms cool and comfortable – while not practical for larger spaces over 200 sq. ft.

Of course, when you’re buying a smaller compact AC like the Midea, you should expect it not to be super powerful. As a result, it can take extra time to cool down your space and may have a bit of trouble distributing cold air as efficiently as the more powerful expensive models.

Midea – Cheapest Portable Air Conditioner




Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) Portable AC


Before you decide which of these best portable air conditioners is right for you, there are a couple of factors you should take into account.

What Size Portable Air Conditioner do I need?

All of the portable air conditioner reviews we include above – indicate the recommended cooling capacity – based on the size of the room(s) you plan on cooling. Be sure to pay attention to the specific portable ac capability noted.

If you try to use an air conditioner with a capacity that’s too low for a large room or apartment, you’ll likely find that it isn’t able to provide the cooling you expect and your comfort, as well as the ac equipment, will suffer as a result.

How Do You Install a Portable Air Conditioner?

If you’re a visual learner, check out this article from WikiHow – With step-by-step instructions, and diagrams to help you install your portable air conditioner correctly.

What is the Cheapest Portable Air Conditioner?

In our reviews for a cheap portable ac – you should consider the 5,300 BTU portable air conditioner from Midea.

However, the cheapest may not always be best for economy choices – The 14,000 BTU Black + Decker portable AC model also gets the job done efficiently and still at a great value.

Prices for these units cover quite a range, so there are options for almost all budget levels. If you’re working with limited resources, a value-friendly model like the BLACK + DECKER 14,000-BTU’s is likely the right choice for you.

If your budget is a bit larger, though, you may get more utility from a higher-end selection, such as the Whynter ARC14S rated as our best portable air conditioner.


At the end of the day, the best portable air conditioner for you will depend on what you need from it and how you intend to use it. The models listed here, though, are among the best out there today.

Using this portable air conditioner review guide, you should quickly be able to find an ideal air conditioning unit for your home without having to wade through the hundreds of models on the market individually.

References & Further Reading


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