The best portable air conditioners to keep you cool all summer long

Sweaty glow be gone, here is our round-up of the most efficient portable air conditioners.

two portable air condition units

by Marina Avraam |

It’s mid-July, the summer heatwave has hit and you’re sweating from places you never thought you could sweat from before. The fan is making too much noise, and you’re trying to figure out why on earth you haven’t invested in an air conditioner yet – sound familiar?

The truth is air conditioners are a necessary addition to any home – even in the UK. Those few weeks of hot and humid discomfort are simply not worth enduring and will be made even worse if you’re working from home this summer.

Related: The best dehumidifiers

Portable air conditioners are an easy-breezy way to keep cool, without the faff that comes with a window air conditioner. You can also move your portable air conditioner around from your bedroom to your living room or kitchen, depending on where you at the time.

We’ve rounded up the best portable air conditioners out there, to keep you cool, calm and collected all summer long.

Do all portable air conditioners need to be vented out a window?

Yes, in order to operate efficiently, all portable air conditioners must be vented out of a window. This is because air conditioners operate by pulling in warm air and expelling cold air, meaning that the remaining warmth and moisture needs a way out of the room.

Luckily, most portable air conditioners come with a simple window vent kit that will fit onto most standard windows.

Related: The best portable heaters to beat the winter chill

Are portable air conditioners noisy?

While this will mostly depend on the specific model you opt for, portable air conditioners typically produce a purring white noise that is deemed to be quieter than a typical tower fan.

If you are a light sleeper or sensitive to noise in general, we suggest contacting the manufacturer directly to enquire about the decibel ratings of your particular model. Reading reviews will also give you a better understanding of how noisy or quiet a particular air conditioner is.

Related: The best log burners for a warm and cosy living room

What to look for when buying a portable air conditioner?

The BTU, short for British Thermal Unit, is the most important specification to look out for when purchasing an air conditioner, as this will give you an indication of how powerful a particular unit is. Small, table-top air conditioners range from 5,000 to 7,000 BTUs, with medium and bigger units ranging from 8,000 to 12,000 BTU's. Remember, the lower the BTU, the less room coverage the unit will provide.

The best portable air conditioners

Inventor Chilly Portable Air Conditioner

Editor's Pick
Inventor Chilly Portable Air Conditioner
Amazon

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Say goodbye to sweat patches and say hello to the Inventory Chilly portable air conditioner. Sleek looking and compact, this machine will cool down a room in minutes thanks to its powerful performance. The space-saving design means itu2019ll work great even with smaller living spaces, and the unique structure allows you to move it to any room, as and when you please. A triple threat, with cooling, dehumidifying and fanning capabilities, youu2019ll feel as refreshed as ever, wishing you made the leap sooner.

Key specifications:

34.5 x 35.5 x 70.3 cm

8,000 BTU

2-year warranty

Eco-friendly

Wireless remote control included

Review:

“This is an amazing air conditioner!! Not only does it work perfectly but the noise is so soothing. My husband compared it to white noise. I feel like it actually helps me sleep better. It can get so hot in our house, especially because we can’t open our windows since we have strictly indoor cats. This is worth every pound and I will be saving up to purchase another!! It’s a little heavy but that is not a real complaint. It’s a lovely unit and I am so thankful for it!!”

Oops! Due to high demand, this next item is currently out of stock. Keep scrolling for more options and we'll update this page once it's available again.

NETTA Air Conditioner Unit Portable

The best portable air conditioner for small rooms
NETTA Air Conditioner Unit Portable
Amazon

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If youu2019re after a portable air conditioner but dread the electricity bill, the NETTA air conditioner promises high performance with lower power consumption. The 24-hour timer allows you to set the air conditioner before going about your day, ensuring you will come back to a cool house. If youu2019re sick of the discomfort that comes with increased moisture in the atmosphere, simply pop on the dehumidification mode to help keep the air fresh. With mobility at its core, this air conditioner is equipped with carry handles and four caster wheels, allowing you to glide the machine effortlessly around your home.

Key specifications:

33.4 x 32.3 x 68.8cm

8,000 BTU

12-hour timer

Low energy consumption

20sqm coverage

Review:

“I like it! It's neat, smaller than I expected and the hose is more robust than the tumble drier hoses. It's is a little bit loud but not rattly, and I can hear my toddler calling me from his room even though he's over the landing. It's brilliant and cools my big bedroom down quickly. The noise wouldn't stop me from sleeping, it's no louder than a normal fan on full. Because it's quite petite it'll store away nicely in winter too. My husband rolled his eyes at me when I insisted we need AC but he's changed his mind and decided it was a good buy.”

MVPower Portable Mobile Air Conditioner

The best value portable air conditioner
MVPower Portable Mobile Air Conditioner

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This three-in-one portable air conditioner cools, cleans and humidifies the air to keep you comfortable when temperatures get too high, while simultaneously improving air quality. With three levels including natural, normal and sleep, you can change the mode depending on what you're doing, adjusting it to the optimal level for your home. The low energy consumption will do wonders to your electric bill, and the built-in timer will switch off the machine all by itself, depending on the setting.

Key specifications:

56 x 25.5 x 25.5cm

65W power

Three modes

Low energy consumption

Review:

"Lovely cool air conditioner for a really hot room, better than stand up fans...no assembly required... Easy to carry from room to room even though I'm a short person and not very strong. Fan looks smart and of good quality. I would buy another one for the other room."

Oops! Due to high demand, this next item is currently out of stock. Keep scrolling for more options and we'll update this page once it's available again.

Pro Breeze 4-in-1 Portable Air Conditioner

The best all-rounder
Pro Breeze 4-in-1 Portable Air Conditioner
Amazon

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Strong and effective, the Pro Breeze air conditioner will cool down any room big or small, quickly and efficiently. With two fan speeds, an auto-cooling and a dehumidifier mode, you'll get all functions you could ever need in one, with this smart-looking machine. The easy to use LED screen will give you full view and control of the operating modes and the advanced sleeping mode will gradually ease you into a comfortable sleep come bedtime.

Key specifications:

31cm x 31cm x 64cm

7000 BTU Cooling Power

Wireless Remote Control with 24-hour Timer

Energy Efficiency Class: A

Sleep Mode for Overnight Energy Saving

Review:

"Has shown to be effective at keeping me cool on exceptionally warm days in my room which tend to get considerably warm. It is pretty loud though, louder than a fan but not obnoxiously loud. Also, it's quite heavy but the wheels mean that once out of its box you don't have to lift it up as much, which is nice. Also, the different modes allow you to chose when you want your AC on as on some days the fan is all you need to keep cool during the summer."

BLACK+DECKER Portable 3-in-1 Air Conditioner

The best portable air conditioner for large rooms
BLACK+DECKER Portable 3-in-1 Air Conditioner

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A premium option, to say the least, this portable air conditioner provides constant temperature control which you can monitor via the LED digital display. At 12,000 BTU's, this is the most powerful model on our list, with a high cooling capacity as well as a high-tech filtration system that will vastly improve air quality. Other than a great cooler for the summer, the dehumidifying function will help soak up moisture and keep us dry all winter long too.

Key specifications:

25 x 30 x 20 cm

12,000 BTU

Dehumidifier function

LED digital display

Review:

"It's great! Only had it for a couple of months but it is really effective cools the room down well. It is a bit loud but not annoyingly loud it's easy to forget and easy to sleep with it on. Overall really happy definitely worth the money."

Inventor Magic Portable Air Conditioner

Best portable air conditioner with heat
Inventor Magic Portable Air Conditioner
Amazon

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A cooler in the summer, a heater for the winter, the 'Magic' portable air conditioner truly lives up to its name. Offering five functions including auto, cool, dry, fan and heat, you can customise your experience and find the best settings for your home. The minimal and contemporary design will blend in with your du00e9cor beautifully, and the omni-directional caster wheels mean you can roll your air conditioner from room to room with ease.

Key specifications:

46.7 x 39.7 x 76.5cm

12,000 BTU

Air cooler and heater

Five functions, three speeds

Eco-friendly

Review:

"Outstanding build quality. Great features and very quiet (compared to our other units in our home). Really very very impressed. Cannot fault in the slightest - works quickly to cool a room and has lots of nice features too. Even the remote is solidly built - really truly one of the best purchases we've ever made, so much so we bought a second one!"

Corlitec Portable Air Conditioner

The best quiet portable air conditioner
Corlitec Portable Air Conditioner

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Equipped with an advanced air compressor, this air conditioner provides high cooling efficiency to keep you comfy during those mid-summer heatwaves. With cooling, fanning and dehumidifying options, you can keep humidity at bay, sitting at the perfect level between 40 to 60 per cent. If you're sensitive to noise then you'll be glad to know that this option is particularly quiet; no more than a silent purr that will all but lull you to sleep. The real-time digital display and remote allow you to monitor and control the stats easily, as well set the time, adjust the temperature and switch modes.

Key specifications:

88 x 38.2 x 35.4 cm

9000 BTU

Cooler, fan and dehumidifier

Child-lock

Review:

"It's an all-in-one product. Slim, easy to use and excellent cooling. Comes with wheels so very easy to move around on my carpeted floor. It's also quiet so sleeping is never a problem. Loved the fan and dehumidifier functions built-in. Overall an all-rounder for summers!! Highly recommended."

What to read next:

Fight the heat with the best tower fans on the market

The best oil-filled radiators to keep you warm all year round

The best humidifiers

Marina Avraam is a Commercial Content Writer for WhatsTheBest, and also writes for Yours.co.uk, heatworld and Closer across beauty, tech, and lifestyle.

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