Last updated on July 30th, 2022 at 09:30 am
The best cheap portable air conditioner under $200 does not only save money but also brings a lot of convenience on your hot days. Choosing the one that comes within your budget but does not compromise on the quality, functionality, and performance, is hard.
Before selecting the best cheap portable air condition under $200, there are some significant factors that you need to consider and those include the following:
- Unit size
- Room size
- Energy usage
- Dual-hose vs. single hose
- Condensate type
- Ease of use
- Price Range
For your comfort, we have assembled a list of the best cheap portable air conditioner under $200 keeping the above-mentioned factors into our considerations.
A Buying Guide To The Best Cheap Portable Air Conditioner Under $200
Before buying the best cheap portable air conditioner under $200, there are some significant factors to consider, so let us dive right in:
- Most of the portable air conditioners weigh around 50 to 70 pounds.
- The weight of AC units varies because of designs. The bulkier units weigh around 80 pounds.
- Generally, the units come with wheels at the bottom so whatever the weight is, you can easily move it.
- Different types of metals are used in constructing an air conditioner.
- Typically, plastic and other lightweight materials are used in its manufacturing.
- The most critical elements in the air conditioners are copper tubing or aluminum finstocks. These are used in exchanging heat as they offer high thermal conductivity.
Unit Size & Room Size
- The portability of a unit depends on the size as well. The bigger the unit, the heavier the weight will be. Likewise, it depends on the size of the room.
The following video will help you in choosing the right size of unit:
- If you have to adjust your portable air conditioner into a small-sized room off around 200 square feet, we will recommend you to go for a smaller unit.
- Every air conditioning unit comes with a guide to choosing the right-sized unit for your room.
Steps to Choose the Right Sized Unit for Your Room?
- The very first step is to measure your room.
- If you plan to use the air conditioner in different rooms, measure the largest room because having a smaller unit in a larger room will cause a problem.
- Also, before choosing an air conditioning unit, you should know the BTU capacity depends on the size of your room.
The following infographic will help you in better understanding:
- Energy conservation is another critical consideration. Portable air conditioners consume a lot of electricity; cooling costs account for around 13% of a typical household’s energy bill.
- The amount of energy it uses, though, is determined by the kind of air conditioner you buy and how you use it. Energy-star-rated portable air conditioners are more energy-efficient than normal models.
- You can also conserve electricity by selecting a small portable air conditioner with programmable thermostats or a 24-hour timer. When your desired temperature is met, this function will turn the device off automatically.
How Much Energy Does A Portable Air Conditioner Use?
This can figure out by the following formula:
“A portable air conditioner consumes the same amount of energy as a standard air conditioner. A 5,000 BTU PAC uses about 1.4 kWh, an 8,000 BTU unit 2.3 kWh, a 10,000 BTU unit 2.9 kWh, a 12,000 BTU unit 3.5 kWh, and a 15,000 BTU unit 4.4 kWh when converted to kWh.”
- You should place your air conditioner near a window for better ventilation. Your unit can also be vented through the base, roof, chimney, or another space.
- If you want to vent your portable air conditioner through a window, you’ll need a window venting system.
How to Use a Window Ventilation Kit?
These kits allow customers to modify their windows to fit a hose that the portable air conditioner will use to control ventilation. The window ventilation kit includes a hose and panels to make it easier to secure the hose in the window. The panels ensure that no air escapes whether your window slides horizontally or vertically. Although the majority of ventilation kits are simple to mount, others may need assistance.
The following video will help you in installing your portable air conditioner in sliding windows:
Dual Hose vs. Single Hose
You’ll find two hose configurations to pick from while looking for the cheapest portable air conditioners including a single hose and a dual hose air conditioner.
Ventless air conditioners, also known as swamp coolers or compact evaporative coolers, are also available.
Single Hose Portable AC
A single-hose portable air conditioner draws air from inside the space and exhausts warmed air and moisture outside. Since they have to work twice as hard to cool your room, these units are less effective.
Dual Hose Portable AC
The dual hose unit has two exhaust hoses that are one for drawing air into the unit and the other for exhausting it. Dual portable air conditioners use less space than single-hose air conditioners. They also cool rooms even faster than single-hose ones, around 40% faster. They do, though, pay a little more and use a little more energy.
How Does The Dual & Single Hose Portable AC Differ?
Just the air inside the room is conditioned and returned. Indoor air is not recirculated or vented to the outside. With better energy efficiency, the room can be cooled up to 40% faster.
To compensate for the air volume lost when indoor air is exhausted outside, the single hose configuration depends on air leakage from doors and windows. Cooling the room takes longer and consumes more energy.
The dual hose machine solves the issue of negative air pressure, but it is more expensive.
The air conditioner with a single hose is intended to be temporary and compact. This makes it simple to switch it to the areas of your home that need cooling.
This air conditioner cools more rapidly and uses more fuel than the other.
You will want to use a more versatile system if you plan to use it in a room with computers or even a mini-fridge.
To figure out which model is best for your situation, compare BTU and EER scores, as well as manufacturing consistency.
You must carefully calculate the BTUs of the system you will be using in order for the single hose portable air conditioner to be successful.
- In general, you can aim for a decibel level of 40-60, with the lowest scores being the highest.
- Depending on the fan level, most portable air conditioners have a temperature in the 50s. A silent conversation is generally thought to have a noise level of this level.
- Noise levels double every ten decibels on the decibel scale, so there’s a big gap between 55 and 50 decibels: 50 percent to be exact.
Note: Keep in mind because most vendors only mention the highest noise level, but if you buy anything big enough to run at half speed, the average noise level will be much lower.
How Loud a Normal Portable AC is?
The following infographic will help you understand the decibel scale better:
- Portable air conditioners will only work well if they are properly mounted and installed to exhaust hot air. The heated air is usually vented outside through a window kit that comes with the device.
- The package includes everything you will need to set up the machine. This is a relatively simple and fast procedure.
The following DIY will help you in installing your unit easily:
- If your interior design and decor are important to you, you will want to pick a device that will blend in with your surroundings without sacrificing cooling power or performance. This necessitates striking a balance between aesthetics and functionality.
- This is possible because different modules come in various sizes and colors. So, take your time and browse around; you should be able to find one that fits your aesthetic tastes.
Portable air conditioners both cool and extract moisture from the air in your room. When this water accumulates in the device, it must be drained in order for the air conditioner to begin to work properly. There is a variety of draining solutions available for portable air conditioners:
- Fully Self-Evaporative AC
- Partially Self-Evaporative AC
- Portable AC with Drain Hose
- Portable AC with Internal Bucket
Fully Self-Evaporative AC
Fully self-evaporative air conditioners are those that automatically evaporate excess moisture on a continuous basis.
Partially Self-Evaporative AC
A partially self-evaporative air conditioner functions similarly to a completely self-evaporative air conditioner. The amount of water that the device will evaporate, though, is determined by how you use it as well as other environmental factors.
Portable AC with Drain Hose
Excess water is removed from portable air conditioners via a drain hose with an exhaust hose.
Portable AC with Internal Bucket
The most popular and straightforward model of compact portable air conditioner has an internal bucket that must be manually emptied on a regular basis.
- The most appropriate size for an air conditioner is 2,880 BTU.
- The best you can do is invest in a compact 5,000 BTU window air conditioner or a small 8,000 BTU portable air conditioner.
The following table will help you in choosing the most suitable BTU rating for you:
Ease of Use
Although any cheap portable air conditioner is simple to operate, some have specific control features that increase comfort and reduce the amount of effort required. Here are some of the exclusive features that will make your cooling experience more convenient and enjoyable.
Moisture is extracted from the air and expelled through the vent tube by a self-evaporating portable air conditioner.
A programmable thermostat allows you to schedule the air conditioner to work until a certain temperature is reached. It switches off automatically until it reaches the desired temperature.
A programmable timer allows you to set the air conditioner to switch on and off within a fixed amount of time, similar to how a programmable thermostat allows you to change the temperature to your exact comfort level.
A remote control allows you to control the machine even though you are a long-distance away.
Washable or Usable Air Filters
Disposable or reusable/washable air filters are used on some low-cost portable air conditioners. Both are important because they aid in the removal of allergens that are circulating in your household. Choose a cheap portable air conditioner with washable air filters instead of plastic filters since washable air filters trap 10X more dust and allergens.
A dehumidifier can help dry the air and eliminate extra moisture if your space is a bit too stuffy and humid. Mold control and other health benefits are also aided by dehumidifying your bed.
Heater or AC Combination
When the cool weather arrives, an air conditioner that also functions like a refrigerator will save you the hassle of buying a separate portable space heater.
Casters or Carrying Handle
If you want to use your air conditioner in different spaces, you should consider how convenient it would be to transport and transfer. Casters will make it easier to get about, and a carrying handle will make it simple to raise, even though it’s a heavy device.
- The most critical aspect in selecting the right portable air conditioner is having a reasonable budget. The higher the cooling power of an air conditioner, the more expensive it is. As a result, the bigger space, the more money you should be prepared to invest.
- However, with a spatial scale of 200 square feet to 300 square feet, there are some great air conditioners under $200.
- A system with a higher British Thermal Unit rating, which costs over $300, is needed for a larger room, such as 400 square feet.
Top 6 Best Cheap Portable Air Conditioner Under $200
The list we have assembled of the best cheap portable air conditioner under $200 is critically analyzed on the basis of some important factors including BTU, weight, price, installation, ventilation, and the right size.
|TaoTronics 3-in-1 Air Cooler|
Weighs 25.35 pounds
80 watts power
13 x 10 x 43 inches
|COMFYHOME 3-in-1 Evaporative Air Cooler|
Weighs 11.33 pounds
65 watts power
11 x 10 x 22 inches
|AGILLY 2-in-1 Air Conditioner|
Weighs 16.12 pounds
60 watts power
12 x 12 x 32 inches
|Hessaire MC18M Portable Air Conditioner|
Weighs 16 pounds
20 x 10 x 28 inches
|Evaporative Room Cooler & Humidifier|
Weighs 12.03 pounds
40 x 8.4 x 7.3 inches
|hOmeLabs Portable Air Cooler|
Weighs 18.45 pounds
130 watts power
7 x 13.1 x 34 inches
1. TaoTronics 3-in-1 Air Cooler- Air Conditioning Unit Under 200
- Weighs 25.35 pounds
- 80 watts power
- 13 x 10 x 43 inches
- Remote control type
- 43 inches tower fan
- 3 speed and running settings
- 800 ml/h moisture output
- Velocity of 19ft/s
- 7L/1.85 Gallon water tank
- Auto shut off LED display
- Low noise; less than 46.5 dB
- 60° oscillating angle
- Easy to adjust
- Energy-saving unit
If you are looking for a portable air conditioning unit that is easy to set, this could be the best choice. As it is lightweight, you can appreciate rolling it in any room with you without any hassle. When it comes to the storage of water, know that this fan appreciates storing almost two gallons of water which is more than enough to run it for a long period.
What’s more incredible about this air conditioner is its two ice packs and if you want a cooler breeze, just put some more ice into the water. The design of TaoTronics is of remote-control type and offers you three wind speed modes. It provides a perfect oscillating angle as well which is around 60°. Its auto shutoff LED display is another plus that you will get at such a cheap price!
2. COMFYHOME 3-in-1 Evaporative Air Cooler- Best Cheap Portable Air Conditioner Under $200
- Weighs 11.33 pounds
- 65 watts power
- 11 x 10 x 22 inches
- Remote control type
- 120 volts
- 3 numbers of speed
- 35 dB noise
- 170 square feet floor area
- 65° oscillation
- Powerful wind of 455 CFM
- 12 hours timer setting
If you are looking for the ultimate unit of ventilation, this device from comfyhome is the one for you. This air conditioner is one of the inexpensive portable air conditioners available for less than $200. This multi-function evaporative cooler can be used with or without windows and incorporates fan air conditioning and humidifier purification.
It has three adjustable speeds and wind modes, and it is simple to use manually or with the remote. This air conditioning unit is a great value for the money and is pretty enough to cool an average-sized bedroom real quick. As it works as a humidifier as well, so remember that once it starts getting humid in the room. Do not forgot to turn off the “Cool” feature.
3. AGILLY 2-in-1 Air Conditioner- Slimmest Portable Air Conditioner Under 200
- Weighs 16.12 pounds
- 60 watts power
- 12 x 12 x 32 inches
- Remote control type
- 40 dB noise level
- 400 square feet floor area
- 120 volts
- 3 gallons water tank
- 3 numbers of speed
- 4 modes of operation
- 80° oscillation
- 12 hours timer feature
- Energy-saving unit
Finding the slimmest air conditioning unit is hard, so if you are looking for an air conditioner that is smart and yet performs all the functions incredibly, this is your device to buy! It is a remote-controlled unit and takes no time to cool the entire living room. When it comes to the buildup of this machine, know that it is highly durable and sturdy.
What’s more, most of the AC units are so loud that you have to shut them off if you really want to sleep. But in the case of this machine, you will be amazed to know that it is not loud but also comes with some instructions for sleep mode. For easier transportability, the AGILLY air conditioner comes with wheels on the bottom.
4. Hessaire MC18M Portable Air Conditioner- Affordable Air Conditioner
- Weighs 16 pounds
- 85 watts
- 20 x 10 x 28 inches
- Knob control type
- Made of polypropylene
- 4 dB sound level
- 1300 cubic feet per minute
- 4 heavy-duty casters
- Easy to operate
- Easy to maintain
- 2 cooling modes
If an affordable yet lightweight air conditioner is your priority, you do not need to look elsewhere because this is the best alternative for you. The Hessaire Air Conditioner weighs only 16 pounds and you can easily carry it anywhere you want without getting yourself into any trouble. The power consumption of this cooler is just 85 watts with a sound level of around 53.4 dB.
When it comes to the buildup of this air conditioner, know that it is made of polypropylene. Some people find the material flimsy but there is nothing to worry about because it works incredibly. It comes with 4 heavy-duty casters and the system is knob control type. With its 2 cooling modes, it never fails to keep you cool even at 100°C.
5. Evaporative Room Cooler & Humidifier- Best Cheap Portable Air Conditioner Under $200
- Weighs 12.03 pounds
- 70° oscillation
- 40 x 8.4 x 7.3 inches
- 3 numbers of speed
- 120 square feet floor area
- Energy-saving unit
- Auto shutoff screen
- 3 wind settings
- Easy to clean and maintain
This fan is a perfect choice for rooms where an air conditioner won’t fit through the doors. Also, without the ice packs in the water tray, the temperature differential is obvious. The mode of wind can be regulated in three ways. If you do not want a constant stream of wind or prefer anything more normal, the additional choices are ideal.
If you like white noise when sleeping, set the speed to the top. It is not loud enough to keep you awake, but it does block out other noises in a noisy setting. With the slower levels, the air flows at a decent pace to keep the atmosphere calm. For homes with dogs and other allergens, the filter is ideal. It is not a substitute for a central air filter, but it does tend to filter out certain irritants. The machine comes pre-assembled with the exception of the frame, which is very simple to put together.
6. hOmeLabs Portable Air Cooler- Best Cheap Air Conditioner
- Weighs 18.45 pounds
- 130 watts power
- 7 x 13.1 x 34 inches
- 200 square feet floor area
- LED display control panel
- 24 hours programmable timer
- Audible low-water indicator
- Reusable and removable air filter
This evaporative cooler will easily cool a space of up to 200 square feet. You should add some ice water to the 10-liter water tank for an additional chill. When it comes to controlling features, this compact air cooler stands out from the crowd. There are three degrees of power: low, medium, and strong. Normal, sleep and wind are the three wind modes.
On top of the air cooler are an LED display and a convenient remote control that helps you to adjust the temperature, wind mode, fan speed, and swing direction. It even has a 24-hour timer so you don’t have to worry about leaving it on any longer than expected. Furthermore, instead of toxic refrigerants, this air cooler uses evaporative technology. The nylon filter can be removed and reused.
Choosing the best cheap portable air conditioner under $200 is pretty hard. But if you compare all the buying factors that you desperately want in your unit, it will get much easier for you. All the products are chosen on the basis of ideal BTU, weight, size, ventilation, easier maneuverability, easy installation, and some additional features.
In our recommendation, the best cheap portable air conditioner under $200 is TaoTronics 3 in 1 air cooler. This machine has all the qualities you might be looking for!
Reasons To Install A Portable Air Conditioner
There are some factors of portable air conditioners that tell you why installing a portable AC is important in your home; these are as follows:
Better Air Quality
You do not have to think about ashes, ash, soil spores, viruses, or microorganisms. It is because you have an air conditioner. If you have allergies or asthma, this is especially important.
Air conditioners filter the air to provide a safe atmosphere inside your home, reducing irritants and allergens that can cause an allergic reaction.
Reduced Heat-Related Health Risk
This is a critical consideration that could easily take precedence. There were 28,000 heat-related hospitalizations recorded between 2001 and 2010. Between 1979 and 2013, there were 9,000 cases of heat-related deaths in the United States. Many of these incidents may have been avoided by the use of an air conditioner.
Increased Productivity in the Workplace
People who spend most of their time indoors, most often in working offices or stations, are more likely to have this disorder. Unsurprisingly, this sense of ill-health fades with time or even vanishes as you leave the house.
As a result, an air-conditioned atmosphere benefits not just your wellbeing but also your work success. Better sleep
Air conditioners not only maintain a constant, comfortable temperature in your apartment, but they also strip extra moisture from the air. As a result, they make it easier for your body to regulate its temperature, which is crucial for falling asleep and staying asleep.
Reduced Level of Noise
You can need an air conditioner with a high British Thermal Unit (BTU) rating depending on the size of your bed. Large systems are much quieter, but they also have sleep modes as well. Furthermore, some of the systems on our list are quieter than fans while providing slightly more cooling.
Benefits Of Portable Air Conditioners
Window air conditioners and inexpensive portable air conditioners are the most common models of air conditioners for cooling small spaces. Many apartment owners, on the other hand, would not allow you to add window air conditioners. Portable air conditioning systems are the next best options.
Although some need a window to operate, they do not protrude as far from your home as a window device. They’re also lightweight, so you can quickly switch them from one room to the next, cooling only the areas where you’re staying.
These units are ideal if you live in a tiny apartment or have a space that is less than 250 square feet (some can just about manage 300 square feet).
This system, unlike inexpensive window air conditioners, is simple to build. They are also simple to disassemble and move to a different space for cooling or storage.
You do not have to give up natural light from your walls, either. Though they are always vented through a window, the package just takes up a small portion of the window area, so you won’t miss any of your natural light or vision.
Saves Money- Cheap Portable Air Conditioner Under $200
The first incentive to use a low-cost portable air conditioner is to keep your home comfortable while conserving electricity. These units may be used on their own or in conjunction with central air conditioning.
Take note of the focus on low-cost portable air conditioners. You will have to pay a lot more if you need more electricity. An 8,000 BTU portable air conditioner is more likely to cost you around $0.11 per hour on average. A portable air conditioner with 10,000 BTUs costs $0.14 per hour. You’ll pay an additional 2 cents per hour for a 12,000 BTU portable air conditioner.
So, although portable air conditioners are less expensive, the BTU rating is important. Of necessity, the most affordable choice is a personal evaporative cooler.
Works As A Cooler & Dehumidifier As Well
Some portable air conditioners not only cool the home efficiently but also dehumidify it. This is particularly critical if you have a high humidity sensitivity or live in a humid environment.
In addition to affecting your health, an overly humid indoor climate raises the chance of mold infestation and property damage. Maintaining a comfortable indoor humidity level will reduce allergy causes, allowing your family to relax freely and stay safe.
How to Maintain & Clean Your Portable AC?
The frequency at which you clean your air conditioner is determined by the model you have and how you use it. Some vendors recommend cleaning or replacing the filter once a week, while others may last for months before having to be replaced. And if you have already used several portable air conditioners, consult the manufacturer’s manual before washing.
To clean your portable AC, the following video will help you:
Frequently Asked Questions
How do portable air conditioners work?
A portable air conditioner consists of a ‘pump’, ‘evaporator coils’, ‘condenser coils’, and a ‘refrigerant gas’ that enables hot air to be rapidly extracted and returned to the air conditioning unit. Before the temperature of the room air reaches the consumer’s preset number, this process kicks in.
Can I install the window kit myself?
Window ventilation kits usually have comprehensive guidance and adopt a simple installation methodology, allowing even those with little DIY knowledge to successfully install them. However, there are a variety of variations between windows and their dimensions that can be difficult for others to understand, so it is best to leave the construction to a specialist.
Do all portable air conditioners have to be vented out a window?
Well, indeed! Portable air conditioners, like all other air conditioning devices, require some kind of venting. Portable air conditioners suck warm air in, cool it, and then expel the cooled air out the front, as well as the warm air and moisture that remains in the back.
Do portable air conditioners use a lot of electricity?
Based on its size, a portable air conditioner can use one-eighth the volume of power as a central air conditioner (cooling capability in Btu). You don’t need to keep the entire house cold at night if you have a portable air conditioner in your bedroom, for example.
Are quiet portable AC’s more expensive to buy?
The working efficiency of a portable air conditioner determines its quietness more than anything else. While there is no direct link between the price of silent portable air conditioners and their efficiency, machines at the higher end of the price continuum tend to be more powerful and therefore operate quieter than those at the lower end.