Affordable portable air conditioners under $ 400


Throughout the pandemic, Shopping readers have turned to home appliances, including air purifiers, fans, dehumidifiers and more. And with summer in full swing and temperatures continuing to rise – especially for many in the Pacific Northwest – air conditioning units may be a priority. If you are in a small space or prefer to skip installing a window air conditioner, there are plenty of portable air conditioning units to consider. To help guide your search and save on the portable air conditioner you choose, here are some highly rated and affordable portable air conditioners, each of which is in line with expert advice.

GO AHEAD Highly rated affordable portable air conditioners

How to buy a portable air conditioning unit

Before you take a look around, you might want to think about where the portable air conditioning unit will go. How big is the room? This will tell you the cooling power, measured in British thermal units (BTUs), that you need to look for. To keep your space cool, air conditioners should typically have around 20 BTUs per square foot, John McKeon, MD, CEO of Allergy Standards previously told us.

To help you find the right model for your needs, EnergyStar, a federal program promoting energy efficient products, offers the cooling capacity guidelines below on its website:

  • 5,000 to 6,000 BTU: Cooling up to 250 square feet
  • 7,000 to 8,000 BTU: Cooling from 250 square feet
  • 9,000 to 10,000 BTU: Cooling from 350 square feet
  • 12,000 BTU: Cooling from 450 square feet to 550 square feet

Highly rated affordable portable air conditioners

Portable air conditioners can cost you anywhere from $ 250 to over $ 500, depending on the size and amount of features, McKeon previously told us. We’ve rounded up a few highly rated affordable models that have responded to advice from McKeon and other experts, with each option costing less than $ 400.

1. Frigidaire 8,000 BTU portable air conditioner with remote control

This Frigidaire unit was previously dubbed the best overall portable air conditioner. It can cool rooms as large as 350 square feet, which is about the size of a typical bedroom. It has an air filter and includes a dry dehumidification mode, as well as a standby mode which helps to save energy. Plus, it has three fan speeds and comes with a programmable timer and remote control.

2. 8,000 BTU Shinco portable air conditioner

The best affordable portable air conditioner, this Shinco unit has 8,000 BTUs of cooling power and can cool rooms as large as 200 square feet. Weighing 55 pounds, it is lighter than other models on the market. In addition to cooling, it also works as a dehumidifier and fan. In addition, it comes with a remote control and an LED display.

3. SereneLife portable electric air conditioner

This SereneLife AC unit is one of the more affordable options on this list at $ 310. It’s a bestseller on Amazon and produces 8,000 BTUs to cool rooms as large as 215 square feet. It comes with a remote control and includes fan and dehumidification functions. Plus, you can find it in a variety of sizes, including 10,000 BTUs and 12,000 BTUs, both under $ 450.

4. BLACK + DECKER BPACT10WT portable air conditioner

If you don’t have a lot of space, this Black + Decker option is compact and weighs 53 pounds, so you can move it around easily if needed. It sports 10,000 BTUs and can cool spaces as large as 150 square feet. In addition to cooling, it also includes a fan and a dehumidification mode.

5. Midea MAP10S1CWT portable air conditioner

This Midea unit includes a portable air conditioner, dehumidifier and fan all in one. It has 10,000 BTUs of cooling power for rooms as large as 200 square feet. For convenience, you can control this AC unit with smartphone or pair it with Alexa or Google Assistant to access voice commands. Plus, it comes with a reusable air filter. It’s also available for rooms as large as 275 and 330 square feet.

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Karl M. Bailey

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