Are Portable Air Conditioners Worth the Purchase?

The days are warming up in Georgia and summer heat and humidity are just around the corner. Is your home equipped to handle the weather change?

Many Southern homes are historic and have less-than-stellar air conditioning or none at all. If you’ve been looking for a replacement unit before the days become too hot to bear, you’ve probably seen various types of systems that claim to meet your needs. Installing a brand new central HVAC unit could set you back thousands, though, and a window-mounted unit simply won’t do the job effectively.

Nowadays, homeowners are embracing the portable air conditioner as an inexpensive, effective alternative to other pricey or poorly functioning varieties. Does it really fulfill all your needs though, or is it just a load of hot air?

What Is a Portable Air Conditioner?

Most people have never seen or used a portable air conditioner, so they are often mistaken for the window-mounted units you see so often in metropolitan areas like New York City. However, window air conditioners and portable air conditioners are two unique systems with their own benefits and drawbacks.

Portable air conditioners are smaller, mobile HVAC units that can be installed in any room. They often look like miniature refrigerators with a vent and similar controls to window-mounted systems. Unlike window units, portable air conditioners don’t hang outside your window, making them a safer option. They work in much the same way as central HVAC units, but, rather than circulating cooled air throughout your home, they push hot air out of your house via a pipe that extends out the window. As you might imagine, this simplified version of home cooling typically works best when used in conjunction with another HVAC unit.

Benefits of Going Portable

Depending on the state of your central air conditioning unit and the size of your home, a portable unit may be the perfect addition to make summer more bearable. Portable systems are easy to use with simple controls. Just set the target temperature and choose which cooling or fan mode you want to use.

Their ease of use and indoor location also make them safer to use around children than window-mounted varieties. Kids can easily push or pull a window unit out of the window, placing them in danger of being crushed or hurting others outside. Portable air conditioners sit firmly on the ground and do not provide a window opening for children or the unit to fall from.

If you notice certain rooms of your home attract or retain heat more than others, you can move the unit to those spots to best evacuate the hot air from your home. The portability also allows homeowners to save money on energy costs. Instead of running the central HVAC unit all summer, you can turn it off and carry the portable system with you around the home, so you stay comfortable without paying for whole-home cooling.

Drawbacks of a Portable System

Portable systems aren’t always all they’re cracked up to be, unfortunately. While they certainly boast numerous advantages over window-mounted units, they still don’t measure up to central HVAC systems and could never feasibly replace one. Portable air conditioners don’t have the same amount of cooling power as central air conditioners and certainly cannot cool your entire home at once.

Although portable units can help cut down on energy costs and are easily moved to provide targeted cooling throughout the house, there is a limit to their portability. One unit weighs 50 pounds or more and comes with an attachable window exhaust kit which allows you to connect the hot air pipe to a window. Once your unit is all set up for use, though, it can be difficult and impractical to move it around the home, though it is certainly possible.

As stated previously, portable units are most effective when used in tandem with a central HVAC unit, not as a replacement.

HVAC Installation, Repair and Maintenance Services in Macon, GA

Georgia summers can get swelteringly hot fast, so it’s important to make sure your HVAC unit is up to the task of keeping your home and family comfortable. No one wants to experience an HVAC emergency in the middle of July and have to run out to find a suitable temporary air conditioner. Repair and maintain your unit before summer arrives!

With Air Temperature Control, you can feel confident in your system’s ability to keep you and your loved ones cool all summer long. Our expert technicians offer 24/7 emergency service if something disastrous happens as well as reliable service agreements which automatically schedule your unit for a tune-up so you never have to pick up the phone. Contact us online or call 478-784-1109 to schedule your maintenance service today!