Those who don’t have a central cooling/heating system are asking: “Are portable air conditioners good?” and going through countless shops for portable air conditioner reviews.

The short answer is: “Yes”. An evaporative air cooler or a portable air con are excellent options for those who can’t (or don’t want to) invest in a permanent cooling solution.

How do portable air conditioners work?


Best portable cooling devices

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Portable air conditioners can be moved in between indoor areas, and you can easily store them away for colder seasons. Portable ACs work just like stationary ones: they absorb the heat from indoors and exhaust it outdoors. Air coolers, on the other hand, use the evaporative method of cooling. Portable a/c run on electricity, and air coolers such as Evapolar are USB-powered and can work even on a portable battery.

These criteria make portable air conditioners more efficient than old-school solutions, but there are more questions.

Are air coolers effective? How well do portable air conditioners work?

We have got your questions answered in our overview of the best cases when air coolers and portable air cons are a good idea.

1. You only need to cool down one room or one personal space

The idea of personal evaporative air coolers and best portable air conditioners is to efficiently cool down a designated area of your home/office. Depending on their cooling power, they can lower the temperature of a particular area or create a cool bubble around you. An evaporative air cooler is the most cost-effective solution for your personal space because it cools down YOU, not the room and everything else in it!

2. You need a cooling device for some time during the year

If you happen to live in a city/town where the warm temperatures last for a few weeks or months, we recommend you go for a portable cooling device. Are coolers and portable air conditioners efficient compared to HVAC systems since they are designed for a shorter usage period? Of course, they are! What makes them more suitable for a limited time is their portable character. So use it, enjoy it, store it for the colder months.

This brings us to the next point…

3. You don’t want a complicated installation process and spending too much on it

A permanent HVAC system, a ductless mini-split, or a traditional air conditioner comes with higher prices for installation and restrictions. If you rent your place, there are chances you don’t want to invest in a four (or five)-digit installation of something you will never use when you move out. It is also a big point to discuss with your landlord. In cities like Vienna or Paris, the installation of bulky equipment that can interfere with the look or the structure of the house is simply not allowed.

The plus of air coolers and air conditioners is that you are just one plug away from feeling cool.


IMPORTANT: You can move the air cooler absolutely anywhere around the house. It uses the evaporative method, and it doesn’t need an exhaust pipe. However, to freely move a portable air conditioner, you need to make sure there is an appropriate window to exhaust the hot air.

If a vendor claims this is a ventless air conditioner, it means it is an evaporative air cooler. Without evaporation or a venting system, it is impossible to create a cooling effect.

Check out how the air coolers work without the evaporation on this page:

4. You live in a van/house on wheels, or you move around a lot

How good are portable air conditioners if you are often on the move? While their portability suggests that you can move them around, they take a bit of space and require a window. In this case, an evaporative portable air cooler is the best solution. No installation, 100% mobile, and excellent for small spaces like travel vans, cars, or hotel rooms.

5. You are into modern, eco-friendly solutions

Do portable air conditioners units work as well as stationary systems? Yes! On the other hand, they can also produce quite a bit of noise (not for sound sleepers). They also consume a lot of electricity, and all that hot air can’t be good for the environment… If you are into eco-friendly devices, an air cooler is your friend — the Evapolar models consume only up to 12W and are super quiet.

6. You want to save money on electricity bills

Who doesn’t? Show us a person who is happy about a high energy bill! Depending on their size, the portable air conditioners can actually consume as much as the HVAC systems. To calculate the price/value ratio of a portable air conditioner and make sure you save on the bills, you need to figure out:

  • Hourly use
  • Wattage
  • BTU (British Thermal Units) = the cooling capacity
  • kWH

With a proper formula and correct calculation, you can compare the prices and the cooling capacities in an online shop.

If you want an easier option, evaporative air coolers consume a maximum of 12W. So you won’t even see a difference in the bill, but you definitely will in terms of temperature!

7. You are picky about your indoor décor

If the idea of having a bulky eyesore in your beautiful place makes you shiver, small and portable devices are your way to go. Portable air conditioners come in stylish shapes, sizes, and colors, making them fit in perfectly with modern, minimalist décor. Evapolar offers small, classy cooling devices to get the best job done by taking the least space!

Are portable air conditioners effective? Are air coolers as good as they say? We hope we have got your questions answered! Yes, and yes, you can go for any portable option, especially if you want something small, smart, efficient, and cost-effective.

The coolest air cooler out there — Evapolar.

The best way to make sure your personal space is cool is to get a personal air cooler. This is also a way to make sure you don’t feel like you are sitting in a refrigerator when the noisy AC freezes down the whole room. Evapolar devices are portable and light, and you can even take them on an overseas trip, into your tent for a hike, or to your office.

It is a small one-time investment, where you only need to change the cartridge once every few months, depending on the use. For the rest — just plug it in and let the coolness begin, wherever you may be!

You can check out what Evapolar has to offer in the online shop.

People Also Ask (FAQ):

1. How effective are portable air conditioners and air coolers?

The cooling capacity is measured in BTUs — British Thermal Units. It all depends on your goal. If you need to cool down your personal space, a last-generation portable air cooler from Evapolar is just what the doctor has ordered. If you need to cool down a large space / the whole room, you can calculate how many BTUs you need based on the size.

2. Is a portable air conditioner any good if I don’t have space for an exhaust pipe?

The short answer is: “No”. The only type of a portable cooler that works without an exhaust pipe is an evaporative air cooler. To lower the temperature, you need either a ventilator (fan), or some sort of venting, or evaporation.

3. Do portable air conditioners work on a battery?

Despite the word ‘portable’, most portable air conditioners still require a plug/socket to function. However, evaporative portable air coolers can run on a USB-powered power bank, making them easier to transport and more ‘portable’ than the air conditioners. Read more: Taking Care of Your Personal Air Cooler

4. How much does a portable air conditioner / portable air cooler cost?

Portable air conditioners typically run from $250 and beyond, depending on the size and features.

Evapolar air coolers start at $99 (with the first cartridge and the USB cord included).