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Portable Air Conditioners

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During the summer season an air conditioner becomes your faithful ally on hot days. To have maximal flexibility which room in your home should be it bit cooler, a portable air conditioner will be the right choice when it comes to buying the right cooler for your needs.

Have a look at our selection of high-quality and functional portable air conditioners, designed to offer a pleasant look and a massive flow of fresh air, even with their reduced size and price. When buying a cooler, you should pay attention to some important features. Following you can get more information on how to choose the best portable air conditioner for your needs.

How does a Portable Air Conditioner work?

Klarstein Pure Blizzard portable air conditioner

The cooling system of a portable air conditioner works due to using a refrigerant gas undergoing changes between gaseous and liquid state, after being compressed inside the air conditioner itself and then expanded in the evaporator. Here, the air cools down until it reaches the desired temperature. At this point, it is conveyed into the room through a ventilation system, while the hot air, which is part of this thermo-dynamic cycle, is expelled outside the room through a special flexible pipe.

The drop in room temperature is achieved mainly by the ratio between the size of the room and the power of the appliance, measured in BTUs (short for British Thermal Units per hour). For adequate cooling in a room with a ceiling of up to 3 metres, you’ll need an output of 340 BTUs per square metre. Therefore, for a 30 square metres room, choose a portable air conditioner capable of developing around 10000 BTUs. However, there are additional factors to consider: very high ceilings, southern exposure of the room, heat-generating appliances, and high average temperatures in the area add to count, meaning you would need additional BTUs.

How to choose the right Air Con Unit?

Portable air conditioners consist of a single unit and can be found on the market in various models. Once you have established the power you need, you can go for a model with or without a pipe. As for the technologies used to maintain the temperature, you can find inverter models and mobile air conditioners with an on/off mechanism. Let's find out some important details about the portable air conditioners available on the market to help you make the right choice:

  • Portable air conditioners without exhaust hose
    These air con units rely on evaporative cooling technology, and they are not performing a thermal cycle with refrigerant gas. This reduces energy costs and spares you the compressor noise. Also, consider that the water you put in the internal tank is cooling the hot air, meaning that you will have to load the water tank of the portable air conditioner frequently depending on its capacity.

    Among these models, you will also find 'water nebulisers' whose principle is based on the evaporation of water. As they evaporate, the micro-particles absorb the heat contained in the air, providing immediate refreshment. The same principle goes for water cooler fans, and these devices are ideal in open spaces when the heat is oppressive, and you need to cool the air somehow.

  • Portable air conditioners with external hose
    To use this type of cooler, you’ll ideally create a hole in the window or wall where the hose outlet can be positioned. Alternatively, you can attach the hose to a half-closed window and place draught excluders or use ad hoc accessories to prevent the muggy air from entering through the opening.

  • Portable air conditioners with inverter
    Air conditioners with inverter motor technology are more expensive but more energy efficient. Once the desired temperature has been reached, they continue to operate by reducing the power to a minimum to keep it stable. Acoustic comfort is also better as the compressor runs at a slower speed.

  • Portable air conditioners with external unit
    Coolers with an external unit work in the same way as split air conditioners. The difference lies precisely in a box which contains the heat-exchanging mechanism and, the compressor, leading to a better energy efficiency index than small portable air conditioners. Some of these appliances have power ratings that are close to those of fixed split models. Placing the compressor outside will partially resolve the noise problem. On the other hand, their costs are often higher, and there are not so many models on the market due to their scarce diffusion.

Things to consider when buying a Portable Air Conditioner

To find the right portable air conditioner for your needs, we recommend paying attention to the following aspects:

  • Volume of the room to be cooled

  • Temperature at which the device works

  • Size and weight of the unit, if you plan to move it between different rooms

  • Dehumidifying capacity (number of litres in 24 hours)

  • Tank volume and the presence of a pipe to convey the hot air outside

  • The possibility of automatically adjusting the temperature and degree of humidity

  • The presence of filters to purify the air

  • Easy access to the filter for maintenance

Furthermore, there are some more characteristics of a portable air conditioner to look at:

  • Winter function
    Although visually not differing from other models, heat pump air conditioners can do something very interesting: reverse their operation. Instead of producing only fresh air in the summer, they also can provide warm air on colder days, in addition to your indoor heater. However, keep in mind that to evacuate the cold air produced, you will also have to use the pipe to the outside.

  • Consumption and efficiency
    Only use the portable air conditioner for the time you are inside the room. Try to keep doors and windows closed to limit the volume of air to be exposed. Use external blinds so that the sun does not counteract the coolness of the air conditioner. Furthermore, it is recommended to seal the passage of the hose towards the outside as best as possible. This is a fundamental operation, otherwise much of the work done by the portable air conditioner will be nullified by the heat entering the room.

    Among these models, you will also find 'water nebulisers' whose principle is based on the evaporation of water. As they evaporate, the micro-particles absorb the heat contained in the air, providing immediate refreshment. The same principle goes for water fans, and these devices are ideal in open spaces when the heat is oppressive, and you need to cool the air somehow.

When buying a portable air conditioner on Klarstein, don’t miss out on our deals and let yourself be inspired by the innovative design of our coolers, built with high-quality materials, and offering long-term value for your money. Additionally, all our products come with a two-year warranty and free return of orders within the first 60 days. To get more detailed information on how to find the right cooler, check out our Air Conditioner Buying Guide!

Portable Air Conditioner FAQ

What size air conditioner (BTU level) do I need?

The BTU level of the air conditioner required for cooling a room depends on the room's size. To determine the appropriate BTUs, a general guideline is to have 20 BTUs of cooling power for each square foot of living space. For instance, a 20,000 BTU air conditioner would be needed for a 1,000 square foot living room. However, factors such as the number of windows, ceiling height, and room insulation may impact the cooling needs. Therefore, to ensure the correct size for your specific requirements, it is recommended to seek advice from an HVAC professional.

How do portable air conditioners drain water?

Most portable air conditioners have a mechanism that removes the excess water collected during the cooling process. This is generally achieved using a drainage hose that can be linked to a nearby window or drain. There are some models that have a self-evaporative system, which eliminates the need for manual draining. The water is evaporated and released through the exhaust hose in this system. To prevent overflow and maintain the unit's efficiency, it is critical to frequently check and empty the water tank.

What should I do if my portable air conditioner won't turn on?

When your portable air conditioner fails to turn on, there are various reasons that might be causing it. Firstly, ensure that it is firmly connected to a power source and switched on. If it's connected and still not working, try another device to see if the outlet is functioning correctly. If the outlet is functional, the problem could be the circuit breaker or fuse. Additionally, a malfunctioning control board or defective thermostat could also be the cause. It is advisable to seek assistance from a professional to identify and resolve the issue in such circumstances.

How can I reduce the noise level of my portable air conditioner?

To decrease the noise produced by your portable air conditioner, there are various techniques you can implement. Initially, it is important to place the unit on a stable and even surface to avoid vibrations. Additionally, you can try situating it on a carpet or rubber mat to diminish some of the noise. Secondly, it is crucial to clean or replace the air filter on a regular basis as a dirty filter may cause the unit to work harder and create more noise. Lastly, you may want to consider purchasing a unit with a lower decibel rating or a "quiet mode" option.

How can I reduce my energy costs when using a portable air conditioner?

By following these tips, you can help reduce the energy costs when using a portable air conditioner: ensure that the air conditioner is appropriately sized for the room it is being utilized in since an excessive unit can result in higher energy expenses. Keep the windows and doors shut when the unit is running to prevent cool air from escaping. Use the air conditioner at night or in the evening when the outdoor temperature is cooler. Regularly clean or replace the air filter to maintain the unit's efficiency, and think about purchasing an air conditioner with an energy-efficient rating.

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