How To Choose A Portable Air Conditioner?

How To Choose A Portable Air Conditioner?

Choosing a portable air conditioner requires careful consideration of various factors. These  help you select the right portable air conditioner for your needs:

Assess your cooling needs

To assess your cooling needs before choosing a portable air conditioner, follow these steps:

  • Determine the size of the area:

 Measure the square footage of the room or space you want to cool. If you have an open floor plan, measure each individual area separately.

  • Calculate the cooling capacity:

 Use the square footage to determine the required BTU (British Thermal Units) capacity. As a general rule of thumb, you'll need approximately 20 BTUs per square foot. Multiply the square footage by 20 to get the estimated BTU capacity. 

  • Sunlight exposure: 

 If the room receives direct sunlight, increase the BTU capacity by 10%.

  • Poor insulation: 

If the room has insufficient insulation or significant air leaks, increase the BTU capacity by 20%.

  • High occupancy:

 If the room is regularly occupied by more than two people, add 600 BTUs for each additional person.

  • Consider climate:

Depending on your location and local climate, you may need to adjust the cooling capacity. Warmer regions typically require higher BTU capacities, while cooler regions may require lower capacities.

  • Identify specific cooling requirements: 

Determine if you have any specific cooling needs, such as a particular temperature range or humidity control. This will help you choose a portable air conditioner with the right features to meet those requirements.

By assessing your cooling needs accurately, you can ensure that the portable air conditioner you choose will effectively cool the desired area and provide optimal comfort.

l Ventilation requirements:

Portable air conditioners require venting to exhaust hot air. Check if the unit includes a window installation kit or requires a separate venting solution.

Ensure the window installation kit fits your window type and that the hose length is sufficient for your needs.

  • Read reviews and compare models:


  • Research different brands and models of portable air conditioners.
  • Read customer reviews to gather insights on performance, reliability, and overall satisfaction.
  • Compare prices and warranties to find the best value for your budget.


  • Purchase and installation:

If you're unsure about installation, consider hiring a professional to ensure proper placement and venting. Remember to review the user manual for specific instructions and safety guidelines for your chosen portable air conditioner model.


What Features To Look If Buying A Portable Air Conditioner?

When determining the best portable air conditioner for your needs, you should consider the following factors:

Cooling Capacity

When considering the cooling capacity of a portable air conditioner, it's important to choose a unit that can effectively cool the space you intend to use it in. Cooling capacity is typically measured in British Thermal Units (BTUs) and indicates the amount of heat the air conditioner can remove from the room per hour.

To determine the appropriate cooling capacity for your space, you need to consider the room size, insulation, ceiling height, sun exposure, and other factors that can affect the cooling load. Here's a general guideline to help you estimate the cooling capacity required:

  • For rooms up to 150 square feet, a portable air conditioner with a capacity of around 5,000 to 6,000 BTUs should be sufficient.
  • For rooms between 150 and 250 square feet, consider a unit with a capacity of 6,000 to 8,000 BTUs.
  • For rooms between 250 and 400 square feet, look for a portable air conditioner with a capacity of 8,000 to 10,000 BTUs.
  • For larger spaces, such as living rooms or open floor plans, you may need a unit with a higher cooling capacity, such as 10,000 BTUs or more.


Keep in mind that these are general guidelines, and it's always best to refer to the manufacturer's recommendations and consult the product specifications for accurate information.

Factors like excessive sunlight exposure, high ceilings, poor insulation, or multiple occupants can increase the cooling load, so you may need a higher BTU rating in those cases. Additionally, it's important to consider the specific climate and temperature conditions of your region when selecting the cooling capacity.

By assessing these factors and using the recommended guidelines, you can determine the appropriate cooling capacity for a portable air conditioner that will effectively cool your desired space in Canada.


Energy Efficiency:

When it comes to portable air conditioners, energy efficiency is an important consideration. Energy-efficient models can help reduce your electricity consumption and lower your cooling costs. Here are some factors to look for when evaluating the energy efficiency of a portable air conditioner:

Energy Efficiency Ratio (EER): The Energy Efficiency Ratio measures the cooling capacity of the air conditioner (in BTUs) divided by its power consumption (in watts). A higher EER indicates better energy efficiency. Look for portable air conditioners with a higher EER rating, as they can provide more cooling per unit of electricity consumed.


  • ENERGY STAR Certification: The ENERGY STAR program sets energy efficiency standards for various appliances, including air conditioners. Portable air conditioners that are ENERGY STAR certified meet strict energy efficiency guidelines set by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). Look for the ENERGY STAR label on portable air conditioners to ensure they meet these energy-saving standards.
  • Programmable Settings: Look for portable air conditioners with programmable settings, such as timers and thermostats. These features allow you to set specific operating schedules and temperatures, helping you optimize energy usage by cooling the room only when needed.
  • Dual Hose Design: Some portable air conditioners come with a dual hose design, where one hose brings in fresh air from outside while the other expels hot air. This design is generally more energy efficient compared to single hose models, as it reduces the negative pressure created inside the room, minimizing the need for the unit to work harder to cool the space.
  • Sleep Mode or Energy-Saving Mode: Many portable air conditioners have sleep mode or energy-saving mode options. These modes adjust the cooling settings to maintain a comfortable temperature while minimizing energy consumption. They often reduce fan speed and adjust the temperature settings automatically to save energy during periods of lower activity or when you're asleep.

LED Display and Auto-Off Feature:

Units with LED displays that provide clear information about temperature and settings can help you monitor and adjust cooling more efficiently. Additionally, an auto-off feature that turns off the unit when the desired temperature is reached can help save energy and prevent excessive cooling.

When purchasing a portable air conditioner in Canada, look for models with higher EER ratings, ENERGY STAR certification, and features that promote energy efficiency. Reading product specifications, customer reviews, and consulting with knowledgeable sales representatives can provide valuable insights into the energy efficiency of different models.

Noise level:

Consider the noise level produced by the portable air conditioner, especially if you plan to use it in a bedroom or office. Look for units with lower decibel ratings for quieter operation.

Portability and Size and Features:

When selecting a portable air conditioner, you should consider its portability, size, and additional features to ensure it meets your specific requirements.

Consider your specific needs and preferences when evaluating the portability, size, and additional features of a portable air conditioner. The right combination of these factors can enhance convenience, mobility, and overall performance to suit your requirements. It's recommended to read product descriptions, specifications, and customer reviews to gather more information about the portability, size, and features of various portable air conditioner models.

Additional features:

Explore additional features like programmable timers, remote control, sleep mode, adjustable fan speeds, and air purifying functions. Consider features like dehumidification capabilities if you live in a humid climate.

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