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6 of the Best Air Conditioners to Keep You Cool All Year

It is possible to escape the heat, and one of the best ways to stay cool is by plunging into the swimming pool. If you don’t have one of those, the other alternative is to crank that air conditioner up high and stand in front of it for a few minutes. Or all day.

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We’ve put together a little list of the best air conditioners you can find right now. I wouldn’t wait too much longer though; it could turn into the toilet paper run of 2020 as the air conditioners fly off the shelves.

Best Portable Air Conditioners

Insignia Portable Air Conditioner

This portable air conditioner has an 8,000 BTU cooling power, which means it will cool a room up to 350 square feet. It has three cooling settings, three fan speeds, a remote control, sleep mode, timer, auto shut-off, and a window venting kit included. The Insignia portable air conditioner is not Energy Star certified.

white insignia brand portable air conditioner
Image used with permission by copyright holder

GE Portable Air Conditioner With Dehumidifier

This AC unit comes with a digital thermostat, dehumidifier, three cooling speeds, three fan speeds, a 24-hour timer, and a window exhaust kit. It has a cooling capacity of 8,500 BTUs, enough to cool a room sized up to 350 square feet, maybe slightly more based on the recommended room size of the 8,000-BTU Insignia model. The GE portable air conditioner doesn’t indicate if it is Energy Star certified, but it has an energy efficiency ratio of 6.4.

GE portable air conditioner
Image used with permission by copyright holder

Frigidaire FHP Series Air Conditioner with Remote

This 10,000-BTU unit will cool a room up to about 400 square feet. It comes with remote control, a window adapter, thermostat, washable air filter, programmable timer, dehumidifying dry mode, and three different fan speeds. The FHP Series has an energy-saving feature and an energy efficiency ratio of 9.4.

frigidaire fhp series portable air conditioner
Image used with permission by copyright holder

Best Window Air Conditioners

Frigidaire Window Air Conditioner With Remote Control and Wi-Fi

This unit offers adjustable room temperature using your smart device’s Wi-Fi and Frigidaire app, voice-controlled Alexa and Google Assistant capabilities, 24-hour on/off timer, sleep mode, multidirectional airflow, three fan speeds, and an alert when the filter needs cleaning. The Frigidaire is a 10,000-BTU unit that will efficiently cool a room up to 450 square feet. There is no indication of Energy Star certification or energy efficiency ratios.

frigidaire window ac with remote wifi
Image used with permission by copyright holder

LG Electronics Dual Inverter Smart Window Air Conditioner

The LG has four cooling and fan speeds with auto cool, four-way air deflection, sleep mode, 24-hour timer, Energy Star certification, quiet operation, a removable and washable filter, a check filter reminder light, and a window installation kit. This window air conditioner is a 14,000-BTU unit that will cool a room up to 800 square feet. The LG Smart Window Air Conditioner is Energy Star certified and has an energy efficiency ratio of 14.7.

LG smart window air conditioner
Image used with permission by copyright holder

Frigidaire Window Air Conditioner

The Frigidaire has an auto fan, sleep mode, six-way air direction control, three fan speeds, a filter indicator light, a window mounting kit, Wi-Fi and Alexa capabilities, and Energy Star certification. This air conditioning unit is 15,000 BTUs and will cool an area of about 850 square feet. This Frigidaire has an energy efficiency ratio of 11.8.

frigidaire window ac unit
Image used with permission by copyright holder

Portable vs. Window Air Conditioners

Air conditioners come in portable or window units. No matter which air conditioner you choose, you need to take a few specifications into consideration.

Portable air conditioners are convenient because they don’t take up a lot of space and are easy to install, quiet, usually more affordable, and can be moved around easily. On the downside, they require outside venting, are not as efficient, and take up floor space in your home.

Window air conditioners are more of a permanent solution. They save floor space by sitting in a window, don’t require venting, and are more efficient. The issue with window air conditioners is that they are louder, bulkier, heavier, and they need to be installed.

Here’s what to look for in an air conditioner:

  • Space: You need to first determine what size you need. Where are you going to put the air conditioner? Do you have room for a portable AC unit? Do you have a large space that needs a bigger AC unit? Can you vent the portable unit properly? Do you have to move your furniture around? Are you able to permanently install the window unit?
  • What AC features do you need?: There are a ton of features available, but really the only features you need are a thermostat, adjustable fan speeds, filter rating, energy efficiency indicated by Energy Star ratings or energy efficiency ratios, and perhaps a timer and remote control. Anything beyond that is overkill.
  • How many BTUs is it?: A BTU, or British thermal unit, is a measurement of how much energy is required to raise the temperature of one pound of water by one degree. When it comes to air conditioners, BTUs measure the amount of heat a given is capable of removing in an hour. In short, this is a critical calculation when choosing the best option for your home or business. The higher the BTUs, the more cooling effect you will have, but also the bigger the AC unit will be.

Here’s a chart to help you determine what size BTU you will need. This will also help you determine if you need a portable or window AC unit.

  • 5,000 – 8,000 BTUs will handle up to 350 square feet.
  • 8,000 – 12,000 BTUs will handle 350 to 550 square feet.
  • 12,000 – 18,500 BTUs will handle 550 to 1,000 square feet.
  • 18,500 – 25,000 BTUs will handle 1,000 to 1,600n square feet.

Once you have these questions answered, you can begin your search. Luckily we helped you out with some of the top picks of portable air conditioners and window units.

Joe Morales
Former Digital Trends Contributor
Joe Morales is a trained chef with over five years of experience working in fine dining and Michelin recommended restaurants…
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