If you’re someone who lives somewhere that tends to get quite warm, then you may want an air conditioner for your home. They’re convenient for making the day more bearable and comfortable, but they can also take up a good bit of space and power. Not everyone has the space in their homes for a full-sized air conditioner or even the budget for one in the first place. But there are now portable air conditioners that are both affordable and can fit snugly in a corner nicely.
Air conditioners in general have a measuring standard for their capacity to cool called BTUs, or British Thermal Units. That’s usually used for measuring how much heat something like a stove or heater can generate per hour. But in the case of air conditioners, it measures how much heat it can remove from a room per hour. If an air conditioner you get has BTUs that are too low may not be able to remove heat well enough to be worth getting, while BTUs that are too high can turn a room into Antarctica and make your power bill fly up to the stratosphere.
The right amount of BTUs for a portable air conditioner depends mostly on the size of the room and how much power you can spare in order to feel comfortable. Most of the time, the 12,000 BTU range is great for this as it provides just enough cooling power while still being energy-efficient enough to not burn a hole through your pocket.
Best 12000 BTU Portable Air Conditioners
If you’re looking for the right 12,000 BTU portable air conditioner for your home, here are 10 of the very best, including one that comes pretty close to the category as well.
1. Honeywell MN12CES
It seems that Honeywell is a brand that does really well in the portable air conditioner market.
This 12,000 BTU model of theirs performs quite well for most rooms, hitting that balance of great cooling capacity with low power consumption. It’s fairly quiet at an average of 53 decibels, and it also has touch screen controls for ease of use.
It can cool up to 450 square feet of space and has a built-in dehumidifier that can remove 75 pints of moisture in the air per day. View the product.
2. Whynter ARC-12SD
Yet another offering by the company that spells the word “winter” differently, the ARC-12SD is their 12,000 BTU model that performs very nicely in most settings, and it looks quite sleek as well.
It can cool up to 400 square feet of space and has an auto drain function that removes most condensation to make it as low maintenance as possible.
It also has a fan and a dehumidifier setting so you can customize your experience. View the product.
3. NewAir AC-12000E
This is one of the lighter and more compact units in this category, making it very easy to set up.
It’s also been cited by reviewers for having relatively low maintenance, making it a lot more user-friendly.
Its self-evaporation cycle minimizes the need for draining a tank, and it also has a 24-hour programmable timer so that it can shut off whenever you want it to automatically. View the product.
4. Koldfront PAC1201W
One of the latest additions to Koldfront’s portable air conditioner line, it can fit in small spaces quite easily as it stands at only 2 feet high.
It’s capable of cooling up to 400 square feet of space and has a self-evaporation cycle for minimizing leakages, spills, and tedious maintenance. View the product.
5. Haier HPN12XCM
This one is great for medium-sized rooms, and it has proven to be one of the better performing units in this category.
Aside from 3-speed controls and the usual bells and whistles, it also has a dehumidifier that can pull up to 100 pints of moisture from the air per day for that extra control over your surroundings. View the product.
6. LG Electronics LP1214GXR
A portable air conditioner from the world-famous LG Electronics should definitely be on this list.
As far as its power, it can cool just about any size room in the house. It has easy-to-use controls and features that make it a top contender for any household. However, it doesn’t really have a good self-evaporation cycle, so you have to drain it every now and then.
Other than problems with its ability to minimize condensation, its performance is top notch. View the product.
7. Keystone KSTAP12A
This has a no-bucket design that makes maintenance almost needless.
Its electronic controls can be used via remote control as well, letting you adjust its 3 cooling speeds, along with a Turbo mode when you want things to get really cool.
It also has a 24-hour programmable timer that you can leave on and forget, and a sleep mode that gradually increases the room temperature after being activated. View the product.
8. Frigidaire FRA123PT1
This one is quite powerful, claiming to be able to cool rooms up to 640 square feet.
It also has an anti-bacterial mesh filter system that makes sure nothing nasty goes into its air, so it’s great for homes with children.
If you’re looking for a portable air conditioner that can give full-sized models a run for their money, then this is a great candidate for that. View the product.
9. SPT WA-1240H
This one is a no-nonsense unit, and yet does pretty much everything you’d want it to and more. It can cool spaces from 450 to 550 square feet, making it a fairly beefy unit for 12,000 BTUs.
It has both cooling and heating modes, as well as fan and dehumidifier to give users a way to adjust it the way they want their experience and use it all year round.
With an Energy Efficiency Ratio (EER) of 8.9, it also has lower power consumption compared to its counterparts in this category. View the product.
10. Friedrich ZoneAir P12B
It’s not exactly a 12,000 BTU portable air conditioner—more like 11,600 BTU—but it does fit the bill for this list.
It seems Friedrich has a penchant for BTUs that falls a bit short of what category they should be for.
The good thing about this is you can get the power of a 12,000 BTU, but with a lot less power consumption since it’s lower than other 12,000 BTU portable air conditioners. View the product.
The three most important criteria to look for when shopping for the perfect portable air conditioner for your home are: how well it performs, how well it works over time, and how long it can last. Buying one is an investment that you’d definitely want to pay off as well as possible. Any of these ten on this list are definitely good for most of the things you’re looking for in a portable air conditioner. But of course, having the best portable air conditioner in the house, it’s nothing without proper use and care.