The best air conditioners: The ultimate guide

A mini-split air conditioning system
A mini-split air conditioning system with remote.

Air conditioning units are essential life-savers during those warm, humid summer months. Choosing the best air conditioner for your needs, on the other hand, is not so simple because of all the different types and specs. Here we will show you what to look for when choosing one and review some of the best portables, window units, and ductless mini-splits.

Topics Covered

  • Things to consider when buying an AC
    • The BTU rating
    • The noise levels
    • Combo features
    • Energy-efficiency
    • Smart functions
  • The main types of air conditioners
    • Portable air conditioners
    • Ductless mini-splits
    • Window air conditioners
  • Ductless mini-splits VS portables VS window air conditioners
  • The best portable air conditioners
    • Black+Decker BPACT10WT
    • Ivation 12,000 BTU
    • Ukoke 10,000 BTU
  • The best window air conditioners
    • Keystone 6,000 BTU
    • LG LW8016HR 7,500 BTU
    • BLACK+DECKER BD12WT6 12000 BTU
  • The best ductless mini-split air conditioners
    • Premium Levella 12000 BTU
    • Commercial Cool 18,000 BTU
  • Maintenance & care
    • Portable air conditioners
    • Window air conditioners
    • Ductless mini-split air conditioners
  • Troubleshooting
    • Portable air conditioners
    • Window air conditioners
    • Ductless mini-split air conditioners
  • How to reduce the electricity consumption of air conditioners

Unit Model Noise Coverage Price
BLACK+DECKER BPACT10WT 5,500 BTU BLACK+DECKER BPACT10WT 5,500 BTU – The best portable air conditioner 49dB 150-250 sq. ft.
LG LW1216HR 12,000 BTU LG LW8016HR 7,500 BTU – The best window air conditioner 50dB Up to 350 sq. ft.
Commercial Cool 18,000 BTU Commercial Cool 18,000 BTU – The best ductless min-split air conditioner 45dB 700-1,000 sq. ft.

Things to consider when buying an air conditioner

When you’re looking to buy an air conditioner, pay close attention to things such as BTU, decibel levels, energy-efficiency ratings, additional functionalities, and smart functions. Here we’ll look at each one and explain why they are important.

The BTU rating

BTU is an abbreviation for British Thermal Units, and it measures energy, or in this case, how powerful an air conditioning unit is.

It’s important to remember that a higher BTU rating doesn’t always mean better because the amount of BTU needed depends on the square footage of the room you intend to use it in.

Using an air conditioner with too little BTU for the room it’s in will force it to work harder, which results in energy wastage and unnecessary strain on the components. Also, having too many BTUs than needed will cool the room too quickly and cause the unit to repeatedly cycle off and on again to maintain the desired room temperature. This creates wear and tear on the compressor and shortens its lifespan.

Find the BTU needed per square footage in the table below.

BTU power Coverage BTU power Coverage
6,000 BTU 150-250 sq. ft 14,000 BTU 550-700 sq. ft
7,000 BTU 250-300 sq. ft 18,000 BTU 700-1,000 sq. ft
8,000 BTU 300-350 sq. ft 21,000 BTU 1,000-1,200 sq. ft
9,000 BTU 350-400 sq. ft 23,000 BTU 1,200-1,400 sq. ft
10,000 BTU 400-450 sq. ft 24,000 BTU 1,400-1,500 sq. ft
12,000 BTU 450-550 sq. ft

The noise levels

No one likes a noisy air conditioner – especially when trying to concentrate or sleep. Therefore, the noise level of a unit should be taken into account.

Sound is measured in decibels. A whisper is about 30 decibels and a normal conversation is around 60 decibels. Most modern air conditioners operate between 37 and 82 decibels.

Whisper = 30dB
Normal conversation = 60dB
Motorbike running = 95dB

Combo systems

Many air conditioners have dual functions and can include built-in dehumidifying or heating capabilities. Some even have all three – cooling, heating, and dehumidifying.

There are benefits to choosing a unit with multiple functions.

It lessens the number of appliances in your home, which is especially beneficial if space is limited.

Added dehumidifying functionality will save on energy because it removes excess humidity, and that takes some of the strain off from the AC condenser.

An AC/heater combo system will let you run the unit all year round if you live in a cold winter climate – and this doesn’t give mold, dust, and bacteria the chance to build up within the AC unit during the autumn and winter months.


You will want an AC unit that is as energy-efficient as possible. Not only is it good for the environment but also for keeping the electricity bill down.

The energy performance rating for AC units can be measured in EER (Energy Efficiency Ratio) or SEER (Seasonal Energy Efficiency Ratio).

What is the difference between these two ratings?

EER is the calculation of an air conditioner’s efficiency at one peak temperature – its peak cooling time (95°F). SEER, on the other hand, calculates an air conditioner’s efficiency at a range of outside temperatures (65°F to 104°F).

EER ratings are calculated by dividing the BTU of the unit by its wattage, i.e. 10000 BTU / 950 w = 10.53 EER.

The formula for SEER is far more complex.. SEER = (1 × EER100% + 42 × EER75% + 45 × EER50% + 12 × EER250%)/100.

All you need to know is that the higher the EER/SEER rating, the more energy-efficient the unit is.

Which rating should you pay attention to?

If you live in a part of the country where the temperature is 95°F or higher most of the time when you run the air conditioner, use EER. If where you live has a more moderate climate, use SEER.

Air conditioner manufacturers only display one of the two ratings on their units. If you want to convert EER to SEER, or SEER to EER, then use this handy conversion calculator at learnmetrics.

Smart functions

Smart functions are becoming a standard feature in many of the newer models. The most common smart function is the ability to control your air conditioner with your smartphone through an app. This is particularly useful as it allows you to turn the AC on before you arrive home or even adjust the temperature for your pets while you are not there.

Another smart function is controlling your air conditioner by voice through Google Assistant or Amazon Alexa.

The main types of air conditioners

Although there are other varieties, we will only cover the three best types of air conditioners – portable, window, and ductless mini-splits.

1: Portable air conditioners

A Black & Decker portable air conditioner.
A portable air conditioner from Black & Decker. Image taken from

A portable air conditioner, as the name implies, is portable and can thus be moved from one room to another as needed. This portability and the fact that they do not require any installation makes them a popular choice.

Unfortunately, many people who buy this type of AC regret their purchase – mainly because they didn’t check all the specs before buying.

It’s not to say that they are a bad choice because there are quite a few amazing portable air conditioners on the market. However, consider the following to avoid disappointment…

The weight of the unit:

The weight of the average portable air conditioner sits at around 50 pounds (22.68Kg). Now, this may or may not be a problem. Yes, they have wheels so that you can easily push them from one point to another, but if you want to move it from downstairs to upstairs, then you’re going to have to be relatively strong.

Energy consumption:

Generally speaking, portables have an average energy rating of 8.5 EER – which makes them the least energy-efficient type of air conditioner. A rating of 8.5 EER is not particularly bad, but there are many models that have ratings well above this average. So, if you’re going to buy a portable air conditioner, make sure that it has an EER rating of at least 8.5.

Noise levels:

Portable air conditioners were incredibly noisy when they first came out. Luckily, the technology has improved over the years, and they have become much quieter. It, however, doesn’t mean that the problem has been solved.

One of the main advantages a ductless mini-split has over a portable is that its noisiest components are located outside, whereas with a portable, all the components, including the noisiest ones, are in the same room with you.

It can be a problem if you want to sleep in the same room as the air conditioner – especially if you’re a light sleeper.

The average noise level of a portable air conditioner is between 40 to 60 decibels, so you will most probably want one that sits at the lower end of the noise spectrum. Also, keep in mind that the fan speed also affects the noise levels, i.e., the faster the fan speed, the noisier it is.

The installation:

As previously mentioned, most people who choose a portable air conditioner over a ductless mini-split do so because it requires no installation – or so they thought.

All air conditioners, regardless of type, works by removing moisture and warm air from the room. This moisture and warm air have to go somewhere – preferably outside or into another room. So technically, portables are not exactly installation-free, because you still have to run a hose from the unit to the outside or into another room.

Regardless, the installation process is much quicker and easier than installing a window or a ductless mini-split.

This video is owned by Handyverse. Check out their YouTube channel here.

Check out this YouTube video to get a good idea of what’s involved with installing a portable air conditioner.

2: Ductless mini-split air conditioners

Ductless mini-split air conditioner.
A ductless mini-split air conditioner.

Ductless mini-split air conditioners are a convenient and cost-effective way of cooling and heating homes or workplaces. They are quiet, compact, and are a great alternative to the regular far more expensive and energy-hungry HVAC systems. Here are the pros and cons of mini-split systems.

The pros of ductless mini-splits

1: They are quiet: They are split systems which makes them the quietest air conditioners. The compressor, fan and condensor, which creates the most noise, are installed outside, while the quieter evaporator unit is inside. On average, the outside unit puts out a respectable 60 to 65 decibels, while the inside unit creates approximately 20 decibels on a low fan speed and 50 decibels on a fast fan speed.

2: They last long: The well-known quality brands can easily last 20 years with proper maintenance and care.

3: They are compact: Their size is another enormous benefit. Better yet, they are installed high onto a wall, so the unit is out of the way.

4: They are very energy-efficient: The average mini-split system has an average SEER rating of between 15 and 18, which is impressive. But it’s not uncommon for some systems to have SEER ratings in the late 20’s/early 30’s.

5: They also heat: They can do more than just cool your home in the summer. They are also just as efficient at heating during the winter, thanks to built-in heat pumps.

The cons of ductless mini-splits

1: They are expensive: Ductless mini-split systems are a bit on the expensive side. Quality entry-level units start at just over $700, while higher end units go between $1,500 to over $3,000. Sure, you can get the much cheaper Chinese brands, but you won’t be getting the same lifespan, quality and reliability.

2: Difficult installation: Hiring an HVAC contractor to install a single 18,000 BTU or less mini-split can easily cost $2,000 to $3,000 in the US. However, there is some good news. The installation process is not notoriously difficult, and if you are fairly good at DIY, then you could do it yourself in under a day.

To know whether or not you’re up for the challenge of doing a DIY installation, check out the video below.

This video is owned by Komar Project. Check out his YouTube channel here.

Please note: Incorrectly installing a ductless mini-split can prevent the system from operating at optimal levels, which can cause strain on the internal components, water leaks, and a higher electric bill. Also, in some cases, having it installed by a non-certified HVAC contractor will void the warranty.

3: Window air conditioners

A window air conditioner
A window air conditioner. The image is taken from Cielo.

Modern window air conditioners are very high-tech and, generally speaking, are more affordable than portables. However, they do have some drawbacks that you should consider before buying.

Outside noise:

Outside noises filter in around window air conditioners, which can be a problem if you live along a busy street or have noisy neighbors. The lightweight plastic window guards commonly used between the unit and the window do not affect lessening outside noise. However, foam board insulation does help reduce noise but won’t completely eliminate it.

Burglar proofing:

It could be a problem if you are planning on installing a window air conditioner unit on the ground floor in an area that has a crime problem because the window in which the unit is installed can be an easy entry point for criminals to gain access into your home. Then there’s also the risk of criminals stealing the unit.

There are some steps you can take to help minimize these types of break-ins, but you may want to reconsider getting a window unit if you live on the ground floor in an area with a relatively high crime rate.

The installation:

Installing a window air conditioner is a lot easier than a ductless mini-split but not as easy as a portable. You should also be good at DIY because an incorrectly fitted window unit will cause the surrounding window to vibrate and rattle.

Also, most units can only be fitted into an unobstructed single or double-hung window.

This video is owned by Mike Kim. Check out his YouTube channel here.

Check out this video to get a good idea of what’s involved with installing a window air conditioner.

Ductless mini-splits VS portables VS window air conditioners

Here is how ductless mini-splits, portables, and window air conditioners stack up against each other. There are no clear winners because, with each, there are some trade-offs.

Portable AC Window AC Ductless mini-split
Ease of installation Easy Moderate Moderate-difficult / Expensive
Maintenance Easy Moderate Moderate-difficult / Expensive
Price range Low to mid-range Low to high-range high-range
Avg. decibels 40-60 dB 50-80 dB 32 dB
BTU range 5,000-14,000 5,000-25,000 6,000-56,000
Energy-efficiency Ranges from terrible to good Ranges from terrible to good Excellent
Avg. lifespan 5-10 years 8-10 years 15-20 years

The best portable air conditioners

Here we will review four of the best portable air conditioners – the Black+Decker BPACT10WT, the Ivation 12,000 BTU, and the Ukoke USPC02S.

Please note: When you receive your portable air conditioner, be sure to let it stand in the upright position for at least 24 hours before plugging it in and using it. The unit could have been transported while on its side, and waiting 24 hours will allow the compressor oil and refrigerant enough time to trickle back to their proper places. Using the system without the compressor oil and refrigerant in its correct place will damage/burn out the compressor.

Black+Decker BPACT10WT 10,000 BTU

Black+Decker BPACT10WT

The BLACK+DECKER 10,000 BTU Portable Air Conditioner is designed to provide cooling relief in rooms up to 450 square feet. With its compact size and powerful cooling capabilities, this air conditioner is perfect for bedrooms or other areas where you need efficient cooling.

3-in-1 Functionality for Ultimate Convenience

This portable air conditioner not only cools the air but also functions as a dehumidifier and fan. With a 5800 BTU DOE (10,000 BTU) cooling capacity, it can effectively cool your space and create a comfortable environment. The unit comes with a convenient remote control and a top-mounted control panel with an LED display, allowing you to easily adjust the settings.

Impressive Features for Enhanced Comfort

It offers several features to enhance your comfort. You can set the temperature to your desired level, and the unit also includes a slide-out washable filter for easy maintenance. The auto water evaporation feature eliminates the need for manual draining. Additionally, the air conditioner has a 24-hour timer, allowing you to program it to turn on or off according to your schedule.

Easy Mobility and Installation

Thanks to the built-in casters and side handles, moving this unit from one room to another is effortless. It weighs 47.3 lbs, ensuring that it can be easily transported. The unit includes an easy-to-install window kit, allowing you to set it up quickly and securely. The vented airflow outlet ensures a steady flow of cool air into your room.

Energy-Efficient and Environmentally Friendly

The BLACK+DECKER Portable Air Conditioner offers energy-saving features to help you save on utility bills. The 24-hour timer prevents unnecessary operation, and the Sleep Mode adjusts the air temperature during the night for optimal comfort and energy efficiency. It uses R32 refrigerant, which is safe for the environment.

Additional Specifications and Information

The air conditioner offers three fan levels (low, medium, and high), as well as an auto-fan setting in cooling mode that adjusts the fan speed automatically. It operates on 115V/60Hz voltage and is suitable for ambient temperatures between 64°F (18°C) and 90°F (32°C) for cooling and 64°F (18°C) and 95°F (25°C) for dehumidifying. The installation kit includes window panels, an exhaust hose, a drain hose, a foam seal, and hose inlet and outlet components.

  • Size: 16.5″ x 11.5″ x 26″
  • Weight: 52.9 pounds
  • Coolest temp: 65°F
  • BTU: 5,500 BTU DOE – ideally suited for rooms between 150-250 square feet.
  • Noise: 49db (low setting), 75dB (high setting) – it’s fairly quiet on the low setting and tolerable on the high setting. Although sleeping with it in the same room while on high might be a problem for some, but its sleep mode function makes it even quieter.
  • Smart functions: None
  • Filters: 1x reusable air filter
  • Energy-efficiency: 8.69 EER
  • Refrigerant: R600A
  • Exhaust hose length: 4′ 11″
  • Functionalities: Air conditioner, fan, and dehumidifier.
  • Features: Sleep mode, self-evaporating, built-in thermostat, programmable timer.
  • Included: The air conditioning unit, a full-function remote control w/ batteries, an owner’s manual, and an installation kit (water drain hose, hose adapters, window casement, and a 4′ 11″ exhaust hose).
  • Warranty: 1-year limited warranty.

Ivation 12,000 BTU with Wi-Fi smart function

Ivation IVAPACWIFI10K 10,000 BTU with Wi-Fi smart function

The Ivation 12,000 BTU Portable Air Conditioner is a versatile and convenient cooling solution for rooms up to 450 square feet. With its Wi-Fi-enabled features, you can control and monitor the air conditioner from your Android or Apple device using the free My Ivation App. This allows you to adjust the temperature, mode, fan speed, timer, and more with ease.

Powerful Cooling, Dehumidification & Air Circulation

This high-capacity air conditioner delivers 12,000 BTU per hour according to ASHRAE rating and 8,000 BTU per hour according to SACC rating. It is designed to cool rooms such as living rooms, bedrooms, kitchens, offices, RVs, or studio apartments. The versatile settings allow you to not only cool the air but also dehumidify and circulate it for enhanced comfort.

Portable and Easy to Install

The Ivation Portable Air Conditioner features a freestanding design that is lightweight and compact, making it easy to move from room to room. It comes with omni-directional wheels and built-in carry handles for effortless mobility. The unit offers manual and continuous drainage options for convenience. Also, the 59-inch extendable single-hose exhaust can be installed in a window using the provided panel assembly, which adjusts from 26.5 inches to 50 inches.

User-Friendly Display and Remote Control

It is equipped with an easy-to-read LCD display and a bonus remote control for straightforward operation. An onboard digital control panel allows you to control power on/off, mode selection, temperature adjustment, fan speed, timer, swing on/off, and view the current temperature. Additionally, a Wi-Fi status light lets you check the connectivity status of the unit.

Energy Efficient and Safe Operation

The air conditioner is designed to be energy efficient, which helps you save on power consumption. It includes features such as a rear cord storage hook, automatic compressor, and integrated frost, thermal, and overflow protection for peace of mind. The unit is easy to install, move, maintain, and track with other Ivation smart devices.

  • Size: 20.51″ x 14.17″ x 28.74″
  • Weight: 67.4 pounds
  • Coolest temp: 60°F
  • BTU: 12,000 BTU – ideally suited for rooms between 250-450 square feet.
  • Noise: 55db
  • Smart functions: Can be controlled on your smartphone from anywhere in the world
  • Filters: 1x reusable air filter
  • Energy-efficiency:
  • Exhaust hose length: 59″
  • Functionalities: Air conditioner, fan, and dehumidifier.
  • Features: Auto-defrost, built-in thermostat, programmable timer.
  • Included: The air conditioning unit, a full-function remote control w/ batteries, an owner’s manual, and an installation kit.
  • Warranty: 1-year limited warranty.

Ukoke 10,000 BTU smart portable air conditioner

Ukoke USPC01W Smart WiFi 4-in-1 Air Conditioner

The Ukoke Smart Portable Air Conditioner is a versatile cooling solution with advanced features. It has a cooling power of 10,000 British Thermal Units (BTUs), making it suitable for cooling rooms up to 300 square feet or a medium-sized room. With its portable design and various control options, it offers convenience and comfort for your home.

Voice and Mobile App Control

This model is compatible with Alexa, allowing you to control it with voice commands. You can easily turn the AC unit on/off and adjust the desired temperature using voice control. Additionally, the Ukoke App, available for download on Apple App Store and Android Play Store, enables you to control the portable AC from your smartphone, tablet, or computer. The app serves as your personal remote controller, allowing you to control all Ukoke Smart Home products in one place.

Traditional Remote Control and LED Display Panel

In addition to voice and app control, you can also manually control the portable AC using the provided remote control. The digital LED display panel provides an intuitive interface for adjusting settings and monitoring the status of the unit.

High-End Technology and Eco-Friendly Features

The unit operates quietly with a noise level of 53 dB, ensuring a peaceful environment for sleep. It uses eco-friendly R410A refrigerant and an efficient compressor to lower energy consumption and promote sustainability.

Portability and Convenience

Installing the Ukoke portable AC is easy because all you have to do is simply connect the exhaust hose to a window for proper ventilation. The unit comes with a washable filter, eliminating the need to purchase replacement filters frequently. It is designed with four wheels at the bottom, allowing for easy movement between different areas of your house, including the living room, kitchen, and bedrooms.

Certifications and Customer Support

The Ukoke USPC02S Portable AC Unit is certified by Intertek for product safety and quality assurance, providing peace of mind regarding its performance and reliability. Additionally, Ukoke offers a 1-year new replacement for any quality issues that may arise. If you have any concerns or questions, their customer care team is available to provide prompt assistance within 24 hours.

  • Size: 17.4″D x 32.1″W x 13.4″H
  • Weight: 55 pounds
  • BTU: 10,000 BTU – ideally suited for rooms between 150-300 square feet.
  • Noise: 53db
  • Smart functions: Controllable through smartphone, Google Assistant and Amazon Alexa
  • Filters: 1x washable filter
  • Refrigerant: R410A
  • Functionalities: Air conditioner, fan, and dehumidifier.
  • Included: The air conditioning unit, a full-function remote control w/ batteries, an owner’s manual, and an installation kit.
  • Warranty: 1-year limited warranty.

The best window air conditioners

Are you looking for a modern and reliable window air conditioner? Then check out these reviews of the Keystone 6,000 BTU, the LG LW8016HR 7,500 BTU, and the BLACK+DECKER BD12WT6.

Keystone 6,000 BTU

Keystone 6,000 BTU Window Mounted Air Conditioner

The Keystone 6,000 BTU Energy Star Window Mounted Air Conditioner is designed to efficiently cool rooms up to 250 square feet. Here are some key features and details about this air conditioner:

Quick Cooling and Dehumidification

With a cooling power of 6,000 BTUs, this window-mounted air conditioner quickly cools your apartment, bedroom, living room, or any other environment. It also has a dehumidification function that can remove up to 1.5 pints of moisture per hour.

Temperature Sensing Remote Control

The included remote control features a thermostat, allowing you to adjust the temperature and control the unit from anywhere in the room. This “Follow Me” remote control ensures more even room temperatures by signaling the air conditioner to cool the space based on where you are.

Energy Star Rated

This air conditioner is Energy Star rated, meaning it meets high energy efficiency standards. It has an Energy Efficiency Ratio (EER) of 12.1, which helps save money on your electric bill while keeping your space cool.

Easy Installation

The unit comes with an installation kit, making it easy to set up in a window. The kit includes everything you need for a smooth installation process.

LCD Display

The air conditioner features an LED display that allows you to easily select options and adjust settings with the touch of a button. It provides convenient access to energy-saving mode, sleep mode, and a programmable 24-hour timer.

Auto-Restart Function

In the event of a power outage, the air conditioner will automatically restart with your previous settings when the power is restored.

  • Size: 15.7″D x 18.5″W x 13.4″H
  • Weight: 45 pounds
  • BTU: 6,000 BTU for cooling rooms up to 250 sq. ft.
  • Noise: 56.4dB (inside)
  • Energy-efficiency: 12.2 SEER
  • Functionalities: Air conditioner and dehumidifier.
  • Included: The air conditioner unit, a remote control, 2 AAA batteries, a mesh filter, a window installation kit, and a manual
  • Warranty: 1-year warranty

LG LW8016HR 7,500 BTU

LG LW1216HR window ac

The LG 7,500 BTU Window Air Conditioner with Supplemental Heat offers a powerful cooling solution for medium-sized rooms up to 320 sq. ft. With its advanced features, including remote control operation and supplemental heat option, this unit ensures a comfortable living environment throughout the year.

Let’s dive into the details of this versatile air conditioner and explore its benefits.

Efficient Cooling and Heating

The LG LW8016HR provides efficient cooling performance, allowing you to maintain a comfortable indoor temperature even on the hottest days. With its 7,500 BTU cooling power, it effectively cools rooms up to 320 sq. ft., making it suitable for medium-sized spaces. Additionally, the supplemental heat feature is a fantastic addition for colder days, providing you with the flexibility to adjust the temperature according to your preferences.

Customizable Cooling Experience

Equipped with multiple fan speeds, the LG air conditioner allows you to customize the cooling or heating experience to suit your needs. Whether you require a gentle breeze or rapid cooling, you can select from two cooling and fan speeds for personalized comfort. This versatility ensures that you can create the perfect indoor climate for any situation.

Convenient and User-Friendly Features

One of the best features of the LG LW8016HR is its low noise performance, operating as quietly as 50dB in low mode. This ensures a peaceful and undisturbed environment, allowing you to relax or sleep without unnecessary noise disruptions. The unit’s slide-in-out chassis design makes installation and maintenance effortless, providing easy access for filter cleaning and other maintenance tasks.

The auto restart feature is especially handy during power outages. Once power is restored, the air conditioner will automatically resume operation with your preferred settings, eliminating the need for manual intervention. Additionally, the included remote control allows for convenient operation from a distance, giving you full control over the unit’s settings without needing to approach it directly.

Enhanced Airflow and Filter Alert

The LG LW8016HR is designed to ensure optimal airflow in any direction with its 4-way air deflection feature. This allows you to direct the air where it’s needed most, whether you want to cool, heat, dehumidify, or simply circulate the air within the room.

Maintaining clean and fresh air is effortless with the removable and washable filter. This filter efficiently captures dust, pollen, and other airborne particles, helping to improve indoor air quality. The check filter alert feature notifies you when it’s time to clean the filter, ensuring the air conditioner operates at its best.

  • Size: 18.4″D x 20.9″W x 13.9″H
  • Weight: 69 pounds
  • BTU: 7,500 BTU for cooling rooms up to 350 sq. ft.
  • Noise: 50dB (inside)
  • Filters: 1x reusable mesh filter
  • Energy-efficiency: 13 SEER
  • Functionalities: Air conditioner and heater.
  • Included: The air conditioning unit, a full-function remote control w/ batteries, an owner’s manual, mesh filter, and an installation kit.
  • Warranty: 1-year limited warranty.


BLACK+DECKER BD12WT6 Window Air Conditioner

The BLACK+DECKER BD12WT6 Window Air Conditioner is a powerful and energy-efficient cooling solution designed to keep your home cool and comfortable, even during the hottest summer days. With its 12,000 BTU cooling power and advanced features such as remote control operation and adjustable thermostat control, this window AC unit provides optimal indoor relief.

Powerful Cooling Performance

With a cooling power of 12,000 BTU, the BD12WT6 is capable of cooling rooms up to 550 square feet. Whether it’s a bedroom, office, playroom, cabin, or apartment, this window air conditioner ensures consistent, quick, and highly effective cooling.

It operates at four levels – auto, low, medium, and high – allowing you to choose the optimal cooling setting for your comfort. The adjustable thermostat control allows you to set the temperature in the range of 62˚F to 86˚F, ensuring a comfortable indoor environment tailored to your preferences.

Convenient Remote Control and Digital Display

The included full-function remote control and digital LED display panel make it easy to operate the air conditioner from anywhere in the room. The 24-hour timer programming feature allows you to set specific cooling schedules according to your daily routine. Additionally, the AC unit offers various modes, including Sleep, Dry, and Fan, providing additional flexibility and convenience in managing the cooling settings.

Easy Installation and Maintenance

Installing the BD12WT6 is a breeze with the included mounting hardware and easy-to-follow instructions. Simply attach the top rail and fit the air conditioner into your double-hung window. The unit is designed for easy cleaning with its removable and washable nylon filter. When the automatic filter check light is active, simply slide or lift out the filter, rinse it thoroughly under running water, and put it back in place.

Energy Efficiency and Environmentally Friendly

This model is Energy Star certified, signifying its energy-efficient operation. It utilizes R32 refrigerant, which has zero impact on the ozone layer and improves energy efficiency by up to 10% compared to R-410A refrigerant. The use of R32 refrigerant also extends the lifespan of the air conditioner. With its energy-saving features, including the timer/lock function and energy saver mode, you can enjoy cool and comfortable indoor temperatures while minimizing energy consumption.

  • Size: 19″D x 21.5″W x 14.6″H
  • Weight: 67.7 pounds
  • BTU: 12,000 BTU for cooling rooms up to 550 sq. ft.
  • Noise: 61dB
  • Included: The air conditioning unit, a full-function remote control w/ batteries, an owner’s manual, and an installation kit.
  • Warranty: 1-year warranty.

The best ductless mini-split air conditioners

The following units cost more than other types of air conditioners, but their power, energy-efficiency levels, lifespan, and low decibel output are unrivaled.

Premium Levella 12000 BTU

Premium Levella 12000 BTU

The Premium Levella 12000 BTU Mini Split AC offers a cooling and heating capacity of 12,000 BTU, making it suitable for room coverage areas of 400 to 600 square feet. With a high efficiency rating of 20.5 SEER, it provides effective cooling and heating performance while ensuring energy efficiency.

Energy-Saving Inverter Technology

This mini split air conditioner utilizes Full Inverter Technology, which results in quieter operation and reduced energy consumption compared to other technologies. The inverter technology allows the unit to adjust its power output based on the cooling or heating requirements.

Convenient WiFi Control

With built-in WiFi technology, this mini split allows you to connect your mobile devices, such as smartphones and tablets, to the unit through the internet. This feature enables remote control, giving you the convenience of adjusting settings and temperature wherever you are. The digital LCD wireless remote control further enhances the ease of operation.

Easy Installation with Full Installation Kit

Installing the unit is made easy with the included installation kit. The kit contains all the necessary components, including the condenser and evaporator units, interconnection cables, and copper connecting pipes required for a standard installation. The comprehensive kit ensures an easy setup process.

Reliable Performance and Certifications

The Premium Levella mini split features a rotary compressor known for its efficiency and reliability. It operates on a power supply of 220V/60Hz and comes preloaded with R410A refrigerant, which is environmentally friendly and does not contribute to ozone depletion. The mini split is certified by AHRI and ETL, ensuring compliance with industry standards and regulations.

  • Size: 34.25″ x 10.62″ x 14.17″
  • Weight: 22 pounds
  • BTU: 12,000 BTU for cooling rooms up to 600 sq. ft.
  • Noise: N/A
  • Smart functions: Wi-fi control
  • Energy-efficiency: 20.5 SEER
  • Refrigerant: R410A
  • Functionalities: Air conditioner and heater.
  • Included: Indoor unit, outdoor unit, a full-function remote control w/ batteries, an owner’s manual, and an installation kit.
  • Warranty: 2 Year warranty on parts and a 5 year warranty on the compressor.

Commercial Cool 18,000 BTU

Commercial Cool 18,000 BTU

The Commercial Cool 18,000 BTU Ductless Mini Split Air Conditioner with Heat delivers both quiet and powerful performance. With 18,000 BTU cooling capacity and 17 SEER efficiency, it effectively cools the room during hot summer days, while the 19,000 BTU heating capacity provides cozy warmth in the winter.

4-in-1 Functionality for Optimal Performance

This mini split system offers impressive 4-in-1 functionality. It includes modes for Cool, Heat, Fan, and Humidify, surpassing ventilation expectations. The air conditioner features 4-way air flow direction and Low, Medium, and High speeds for cooling, heating, and fan-only functions. It also has a built-in dehumidifier that is capable of extracting up to 67 pints of water in a 24-hour period.

Easy Installation

Installing the Commercial Cool air conditioner is an easy process. The package includes a full installation accessory kit, quick connector, and pre-charged line set for both indoor and outdoor units. The product comes with a detailed installation manual, making it easy for anyone to install it themselves. In case of any issues, the excellent customer support is readily available. It also has a washable filter to ensure clean and fresh air circulation.

Effective Heating and Cooling for Most Rooms

One of the standout advantages of this split air conditioner is its ability to heat and cool most rooms effectively. With coverage for rooms up to 1,000 square feet, it is versatile and suitable for various spaces like dorms, apartments, cabins, offices, bedrooms, garages, and living rooms.

Quality Guarantee and Peace of Mind

It comes with a 5-year limited compressor warranty and a 2-year limited parts warranty for manufacturing defects. This quality guarantee ensures long-term satisfaction and reliability. Additionally, the unit features overload protection for safety and peace of mind.

  • Size: 35.4″ x 12.2″ x 8.9″
  • Weight: 104 pounds
  • BTU: 18,000 BTU for cooling rooms up to 1000 sq. ft.
  • Noise: 45dB
  • Smart functions: None
  • Energy-efficiency: 17 SEER
  • Filters: 1x Reuseable air filter
  • Refrigerant: R410A
  • Functionalities: Air conditioner, dehumidifier, fan, and heater.
  • Features: Sleep mode, timer, quick cooling/heating.
  • Included: Indoor unit, outdoor unit, a full-function remote control w/ batteries, an owner’s manual, and an installation kit.
  • Warranty: 2 Year warranty on parts and a 5 year warranty on the compressor.

Maintenance & care tips

A quality air conditioner is not exactly cheap. It would, therefore, be wise to follow the proper maintenance and care protocols to ensure that your system runs as it should. Additionally, you will also save on energy bills and prevent your unit from negatively affecting your health.

Maintenance and care for portable air conditioners

Portable air conditioner maintenance
Portable air conditioner maintenance.

You can greatly extend the lifespan of your portable air conditioner and save yourself a lot of money and hassles by following these maintenance and care protocols.

Here we will cover how to clean the exterior, the importance of cleaning and replacing filters, draining, inspecting coils, cleaning hoses and pipes, and share some off-season storage advice.

Take care of the exterior:

Keep your portable air conditioner looking like new by regularly wiping the exterior clean with a damp cloth. Be sure that the unit is off beforehand, and don’t use any harsh or abrasive chemicals.

Also, try to keep the unit out of direct sunlight because the sun can cause discoloration.

Clean & replace filters:

The type and number of filters differ from model to model. Reusable air filters and pre-filters must be cleaned regularly, while carbon/microbial filters should be replaced when necessary.

Many air conditioners available today have light indicators that let you know when it’s time to clean or replace a filter. Alternatively, check the owner’s manual for guidelines and instructions.

Neglecting to replace or clean filters will restrict the airflow inside of the air conditioner and interfere with its ability to cool.

Drain water:

Draining your portable air conditioner may or may not be necessary – depending on your unit’s features. If it has a self-evaporating or automatic draining function, then no need to worry. If your unit doesn’t have these features, then the condensation it extracts will collect inside a built-in pan or bucket. This water should be emptied out regularly because if it gets too full, the unit will automatically shut off until the water is emptied out.

Clean detachable hoses and pipes:

Most people who use portables neglect the detachable hoses and pipes. It’s recommended that these be cleaned from time to time to prevent mold and bacterial build-up.

Luckily, cleaning portable air conditioner hoses and pipes is easy. Soak them in a 50/50 vinegar and water solution for 30 minutes. Rinse them in cold water afterward to get rid of the vinegar smell, reattach the hose and pipes, and run the air conditioner in fan mode for 15 minutes.

Regularly inspect the condenser coils:

Condensor coils build up grime, mold, and bacteria over time, and those contaminants spread throughout your home when the air conditioner runs. It also decreases the unit’s efficiency and significantly reduces its lifespan.

And condenser coils are expensive, not to mention the HVAC technician you have to pay to come and fix it. In most cases, it would be cheaper to get a new portable air conditioner instead.

You will save yourself a lot of hassle down the road by keeping the condenser coils clean. Luckily, doing so isn’t difficult.

What you will need is a specially formulated AC coil cleaning detergent or make your own by mixing some distilled water with a bit of mild dishwashing liquid.

Put your cleaning solution in a spray bottle and spray it onto the coils. Brush them with a soft bristle brush until they come clean. Put some distilled water in a spray bottle and spray the cleaning solution off the coils and wipe them dry with a clean rag. Close the unit up and run it in fan mode for 15 minutes.

Off-season storage:

If you won’t be using your portable air conditioner for heating during the winter then you should put it into storage. However, it’s not as easy as simply packing it up and putting it away in some closet or garage until the summer.

  • Drain: The first thing you should do is manually drain all the water out of the unit. You do not want any water sitting in it for months because it’s going to grow mold.
  • Clean/replace filters: Clean all the filters thoroughly and replace those that need replacing. Dusty and dirty filters are food for mold.
  • Run the system with only the fan on: After you have drained the water out and cleaned/replaced the filters, run the air conditioner in fan mode continuously for 6 hours straight. By doing so, it will dry any wet parts inside the unit and thus prevent mold growth while in storage.
  • Power off: Turn the power off and remove the batteries from the remote.
  • Disconnect the hose: Remove the hose from the unit and from the wall/window through which you vent, but leave the connectors in place.
  • Cover and store: Cover the unit in plastic to prevent dust from settling on it, and put it back in its original box (if you still have it) before storing it in the upright position.

Maintenance and care for window air conditioners

Window air conditioner maintenance
Image is taken from

Clean the air filter:

A dirty air filter restricts airflow and puts the air conditioning unit under strain. It will also prevent the unit from cooling like it is supposed to. Be sure to clean it after every 4 weeks of use.

Keep it clean:

Keep your window air conditioner clean on the inside and the outside.

Wipe the front panel down periodically with some water, mild dishwashing liquid, and a cloth.

Also, cleaning the interior of the unit at the end of the summer season is extremely important. Failing to do so will attract mold and shorten the unit’s lifespan. Luckily, doing so isn’t difficult.

Please note: Ensure that the window air conditioner is unplugged before opening it. Also, stay clear from the capacitor because it stores electricity and can still shock even when the unit is unplugged.

Open the back of the unit and remove any debris such as twigs, leaves, etc, and vacuum up the dust. Wash everything you can reach that is dirty such as the fan blades and condenser coils with some water and dishwashing liquid. After everything is dry, close it up.

Remove the front panel and wash the evaporator coils too.


If you won’t be using your window ac for heating in the winter, then consider removing the unit from the window, cover it in a bag, and store it somewhere safe. Or at the very least, leave it where it is and cover it for the off-season.

Maintenance and care for ductless mini-split air conditioners

Ductless mini-split maintenance
Image taken from

Ductless mini-split air conditioners are the most efficient cooling systems available – but only if you keep them that way. Here we will share some basic mini-split maintenance tips. Just keep in mind that you should still get an HVAC technician to service the unit once a year.

Remember to unplug the system before cleaning.

Keep it clean:

Keeping your mini-split clean is important. Wipe the evaporator down once a week with some water, dishwashing liquid, and a cloth.

Also, open the compressor outside every month and remove any debris, followed by dusting and vacuuming all dust buildup. You can also hose the compressor down but make sure everything is dry before you close it up and turn the power back on.

Monitor the pipes:

Check the pipes from time to time to make sure that there aren’t any leaks.

Inspect the air filter:

Check the air filter once a month and give it a good clean.


If you won’t be using your AC for extended periods, then keep the compressor covered to protect it from dirt and debris.

Troubleshooting tips

Troubleshooting portable air conditioners

A white portable air conditioner.
A white portable air conditioner. Image taken from


It’s perfectly normal for condensation to form on your unit as it cools warm air. However, if your portable air conditioner is leaking from underneath, check to make sure that the drain plug and other connections are securely in place. Also, check the reservoir to see if it’s full.


If your unit is vibrating, make sure that it’s standing on a level floor. Hardwood floors can amplify vibrating sounds, so try putting pads underneath the wheels or let the unit stand on a rug to see if there is an improvement.

Not cooling as expected:

Check the following if it’s not cooling as expected.

  • 1: Clean the filters: Dirty filters restrict airflow and can hinder the unit’s ability to cool.
  • 2: Check the exhaust hose: Make sure that nothing is blocking the air outlet of the exhaust hose.
  • 3: Disconnect and reconnect the exhaust air duct: The exhaust air duct can sometimes get disconnected. Disconnect and reconnect it to make sure it’s on properly.
  • 4: Leave space for cooling: It’s recommended to leave around 30 to 40 inches of space between the back of the unit and the wall for efficient air conditioning.

Troubleshooting window air conditioners

Window air conditioner maintenance
Image is taken from

Rattling, vibrations & other noises:

Rattling, vibrations, and various other noises are the most common problem with window air conditioners. There is a long list of possible causes, but the first step is to find out if the noise is coming from the actual air conditioning unit or from the window where it is installed.

1: Window

If a vibrating or rattling sound is coming from the window, then it’s most likely that the unit wasn’t installed properly.

You can do a couple of tests such as pressing against different sections of the window while the air conditioner is running to see if it has an effect on the noise. Also, put a level on the AC unit to check if it’s level.

If the problem does stem from a faulty installation, place some weatherstripping between the unit and window so that it can fit snugly. Alternatively, get an HVAC technician to take a look.

2: AC unit

If the noise is coming from the actual air conditioner itself, then we have to pay attention to the type of noise it’s making, and where it’s emitting from.

Vibrating/rattling sound from the outside: Press against different areas of the front panel to see if the noise stops. If it does, then the panel has come loose. Check that the screws are tight.

If the noises are coming from inside the unit and sound like any of the noises below, then there is not much you can do. It would be best to call an HVAC technician.

Banging/clanking sounds: In most cases, banging/clanking sounds mean that there’s a problem with the compressor.

Humming sounds: The starting capacitor is failing.

Clicking sounds: It’s most likely that the thermostat is failing.

Hissing sounds: Hissing sounds means that there is a leak in the refrigerant line.

If none of the above sounds resemble what you are hearing, and if you feel comfortable doing so, open the back (outside section) of the window air conditioner.

Please note: Ensure that the window air conditioner is unplugged before opening it. Also, stay clear from the capacitor because it stores electricity and can still shock even when the unit is unplugged.

Check for dirt and debris: It’s fairly common for leaves, twigs, and other types of debris to make their way into the air conditioning unit. Remove any if present and thoroughly vacuum any dust and dirt you find inside.

Check the fan blades: The noise could be from the fan blades, so inspect them to see if they’re bent. If bent, gently bend them back into place with a pair of pliers.

Also, turn the blades by hand to make sure that they’re not hitting anything such as the insulation or housing.

Accumulated dirt on a window air conditioner fan blade can offset the balance, which results in strange noises. If dirty, wash them off with some water, dishwashing liquid, and a cloth.

Tighten screws: With time, screws, nails, and rivets come loose from the light vibrations. This also causes vibrations and rattling sounds inside of window air conditioners.

Re-drive nails, tap down rivets, and retighten all the screws.

Apply grease & lubrication: As an additional measure, apply some thick grease or oil to places where the casing touches each other. Those parts could be contributing to the noise as they rub against each other while the air conditioner is running.

Not cooling as expected:

The most common reason for a window air conditioner not cooling properly is a dirty air filter. Remove and clean the filter or replace it as per the owner’s manual.

Troubleshooting ductless mini-split air conditioners

Troubleshooting ductless mini-splits
Image taken from

A ductless mini-split can give problems from time to time. In most cases, when something does go wrong, the unit will display an error code that you can look up in the manual. We’ll also list some of the most common problems.

Water leaks:

If water keeps trickling down from the condenser while cooling, check if the condenser line is blocked. If it’s leaking while in heating mode, then it’s water from the defrosting process, and there’s no need to worry.

Not cooling as expected:

Check if the air filter is dirty if it’s not cooling as it’s supposed to. If it’s not the air filter, check the refrigerant levels. Just keep in mind that too much refrigerant can lead to multiple problems such as noisy operation, the unit not turning on, and unstable temperatures.

Another possible reason for a multi-split not cooling as expected could be ice buildup on the coils. Check the coils and remove any ice formations if present.


It’s perfectly normal for a mini-split to make various noises on occasion. Sizzling sounds indicate defrosting, while squeaking sounds are the result of expansion and contraction. Refrigerant can also sometimes make a sound when it flows. But if these noises are very regular or hear more serious sounds, then you might need to get an HVAC technician to take a look.

How to reduce the electricity consumption of air conditioners

Choosing an air conditioner with a high EER/SEER rating is a great way to save on electricity bills and to lessen the negative impact on the environment. But there are also many other things you can do to significantly further lower these.

The following tips apply to all types of air conditioners covered here – portable, ductless mini-split, and window ac units.

The correct BTU rating

Always pick an AC unit that has the correct BTU for the space you intend to use it in.

For example, let’s say you want an air conditioner to cool your 350 square foot living room during those scorching summers. So you buy a 6,000 BTU unit and wonder why it takes so long for it to cool that space – if it’s even able to.

That’s because a 6,000 BTU is only powerful enough to effectively cool an area of no more than 250 square feet. If your living room is 350 square feet, then that AC unit has to work harder to try and cool those additional 100 square feet. It ends up using more energy than it is supposed to and also undergoes more wear and tear on its internal components.

An 8,000 BTU air conditioner is designed to easily cool an area of up to 350 square feet and would require less energy to do so than a 6,000 BTU.

Close the windows and doors

Your unit won’t have to work so hard if you can keep the cool air in and the warm air out. Do so by ensuring that all windows in the room are properly shut and if possible, close all doors.

Turn the air conditioner on early

If a hot day is expected, turn the unit on early while the temperature is still cooler. By doing so, the air conditioner will keep the room cool before the heat enters and thus use less energy.

Change/clean air filters

A dirty air filter restricts airflow through the unit and causes that dust to settle on the internal components. This slows your air conditioner down and causes it to use more energy.

Schedule regular maintenance

Getting an HVAC technician to inspect your window air conditioner or portable isn’t necessary if you do the maintenance and upkeep yourself.

A ductless mini-split, on the other hand, is a much more complex system, and it’s best to get a technician out yearly to make sure everything is still in order.

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