Window Air Conditioners: How Good Are They?

There are plenty of people without central air conditioning who know just how hot and sticky the summer temperatures can feel, making window air conditioners a good choice.

It's a great way to avoid spending the summer days and nights sweating it out when you have a top-performing window air conditioner that is made by one of the most reliable brands installed in your place.

Which is Better: A Window Air Conditioner or a Portable Air Conditioner?

window air conditionerA window air conditioning unit is a great choice for most rooms as long as you are able to physically install one on a convenient window.

Unlike a regular portable AC unit or a ventless portable air conditioner, a window unit doesn't take up floor space or require you to use a long vent hose from the cooler to the outdoors. Window AC units tend to run more quietly and cost less money to run for comparable capacity units.

If you are not able to install a window unit for whatever reason, then a portable air conditioner can work to keep you cool where no other alternative exists, such as a mini split air conditioner or central air/HVAC system.

What is the Right Size Air Conditioning Unit?

It is important to make sure that you purchase the right size unit for the space you need to cool.

This is because a cooler with a too high capacity can use more energy than is necessary to cool your space, leading to you ending up with excessive electricity bills, unnecessarily. On the flip side, installing an under-capacity unit will be inefficient and not able to effectively cool your space.

Most window AC models have their cooling capacity listed on the box, or you can get that information from the website you bought it from.


The cooling capacity is measured in BTUs (British Thermal Units). This measure corresponds to the square footage of the room to be cooled.

Room size window AC units range from 4,000 BTU to 20,000 BTU or more. As a general rule, the larger the room, the higher BTU rating you will need.

While choosing a unit according to the room's square footage, it is also important to be mindful of other factors that may need you to opt for a higher rated unit. Factors such as high ceilings, how much direct sun the room gets, how heavily furnished the room is and the room's location in the home (for example, you'll need a more powerful unit in the kitchen as it can get warmer).

Another important factor is knowing the height and width of the window opening. This should be measured in advance, to ensure that the AC unit can be correctly mounted inside it.

Are Window AC Units Energy Efficient?

If you are interested in efficiency and energy savings, it is possible to check an air conditioner's energy efficiency by locating the EER (energy efficiency rating) listed on the box. This figure is derived by dividing the BTU measurement by the unit's power consumption in watt-hours.

A higher efficiency rating means you'll spend less on home electricity bills.

Energy Saver

Another way to save money is to buy a device with an energy-saver switch. This will reduce energy consumption by making sure the fans don't operate continuously.

Some models feature sleep modes that allow the night time room temperature to be a little higher. This is more efficient because it will use less electricity and you won't feel too cold while you sleep.

Other Air Conditioner Features to Consider

Some other features that are worth checking out are as follows:

In most cases, window air conditioners are a better option than portable air conditioners where portability is not an issue and better economy and quieter running are important factors.

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