Keeping your home cool is easier than you might think. Central air conditioning systems are not in every Canadian home. Whether it’s due to the age of your home, the budget you’re working on, or the demands of your landlord, it doesn’t mean we shouldn’t have access to a cool and comfortable home. For those of us who either do not own their home or cannot afford the price and installation costs of a whole house or a mini-split air conditioner, portable air conditioner is a great option. In this article, we will review the best portable air conditioners in Canada.
We understand that the process of selecting your portable air conditioning unit can be difficult – so many reviews, each option has good and bad aspects. We’ve compiled a list of our top 10 portable units to help quickly understand which option is the best for you. Along with our list comes a buyer’s guide that will give you helpful tips and direction to go in when shopping for a unit. Finding the right air conditioner doesn’t have to be difficult.
Our Top 10 Portable Air Conditioners Reviewed
- Frigidaire FFPA0822U1 Portable Air Conditioning Unit (Our Top Pick)
- De’Longhi 3-in-1 Portable Air Conditioner
- Eco-Air Portable Air Conditioner
- Danby DPA120B6WDB-6 Portable Air Conditioner
- Haier HPP08XCR 8000 BTU Portable Air Conditioner
- Senville SENP/10 Portable Air Conditioner
- Senville SENP/14 Portable Air Conditioner
- Evapolar evaCHILL Personal Evaporative Air Cooler
- Honeywell CL25AE 52 Pint Indoor Portable Air Cooler
- SABD Air Conditioner 4-in-1 Cooler
Each unit on this list is a fantastic option for your home as the warmer months draw closer. The criteria of being listed include: portable air conditioner, multi-option unit, good customer reviews, and a durable product. No matter the unit you select, if it’s on this list, you’re getting the best of the best.
Frigidaire FFPA0822U1 Portable Air Conditioning Unit
Keeping your home cool requires more than a fan or cooling unit. Many regions require a dehumidifier coupled with an air filter. The Frigidaire FFPA0822U1 unit provides both. It comes with an antibacterial filter to keep the air it produces clean and cool. It also hosts a sleep mode, a feature not found on any other device, which keeps it quiet while you sleep.
This is one of the best portable air conditioners you will come across. It certainly is our favorite device, though the rest do hold their ground. This air conditioner is available in 4 different BTU ratings from 8000 to 14,000, which allows consumers to pick a model that is correctly sized for his or her room.
The sleep mode is unique and effective for keeping you cool while you sleep, and the filter will keep your air clean and fresh as it cools you. It utilizes a self-evaporating technology, so you won’t have to drain it out – this is something you’ll find in many units on this list. This means there is virtually no maintenance to keep this unit running. All in all, this is a fantastic cooling unit that will keep you comfortable in the worst heat waves.
One feature that many consumers praise is the room temperature control. This unit can keep your room set at a specific temperature, much like a centralized cooling system, providing comfort and consistency. An issue that has arisen for some is the length of the power cord and exhaust hose. Both of these are rather short for a portable AC unit and often will need to reach in different directions.
- Room temperature control
- Sleep mode
- 12-hour time cycle
- Short power cord and exhaust hose
De’Longhi 3-in-1 Portable Air Conditioner
This air conditioner is a significant option to keep your home cool and refreshing, even during the hottest months. The De’Longhi 3-in-1 cooler will remove 49-76 pints of excess humidity per day. The maximum decibel level clocks in at 53, which is softer than a television program playing in the background. With a 12-hour timer, you’ll never have to worry about when you turned it on or off throughout the day.
The 3-foot tube that accompanies this device, while the standard for most portable air coolers, is rather limiting. The unit will have to be decently close to the window to operate correctly. For most devices, this would be an issue, but the cooling power of 14,000 BTU and the 350 square foot cooling range offers a bit of versatility for this device. This unit is quiet, effective, and will effortlessly cool and dehumidify your entire home on one of its 12-hour cycles. You’re getting a device that works and works well year-round.
There have been reports from users that claim that it has a spread of cooling larger than the description claims – up to 500 square feet. Most reviews praise the effectiveness of this cooler and are amazed at how cool it leaves their homes. One complaint that some have voiced is that it seems to blow out hot air if not adequately regulated when first received.
- Removes humidity from your home
- Quiet device
- 350+ square foot cooling
- Produces heat when not regulated
Eco-Air Portable Air Conditioner
The best feature of this product that makes it stand out from the rest is the energy-saving it offers. Not only does the Eco-Air not take much energy to cool your whole room, but it auto-switches to conserve power when it detects the room is cool enough. Another unique feature this product includes is the 24-hour timer. You can preset hours throughout the day where it will work or sleep.
The biggest aspect of this product is the special features that come with it. It’s your standard air conditioning unit and offers an industry average amount of cooling, but the added benefits you receive with it are what help sell it. The eco-friendly aspect matched with the timer set up is a perfect combination making this device one of the easiest to operate on this list. The timer aspect on this device is rather similar to the one on the De’Longhi, but it works on a 24-hour cycle rather than De’Longhi’s 12-hour one. This unit is available in 10,000 BTU and 14,000 BTU variations.
Besides the noise, there’s not much to complain about with this product. Most consumers who have purchased it love the cooling aspect of it. It maintains a temperature well and can operate for long periods without needing to rest.
- Maintains temperature
- 24-hour on/off schedule
- Wide cooling range
- Can be industrially noisy
Danby DPA120B6WDB-6 Portable Air Conditioner
This air conditioner is designed for style, along with power. With one of the most considerable cooling reaches on this list at 450 square feet, the Danby DPA120B6WDB-6 will ensure that your house stays cold, even on the hottest and most humid days. The LED display, coupled with the separate remote control, makes this one of the easiest to both use and comprehend.
It’s easy to see that this device was built to last and to keep you cool no matter where in the house you are. When compared to most other AC units, this is one of the widest spreads of cooling you’ll encounter from a portable option. The 3-in-1 setting on this device ensures that it will be effective no matter the current climate. There aren’t any special features or widgets other than the LED display and the remote-control addition which make this an easy to use device. Danby’s portable air conditioner is available in 12,000 BTU and 14,000 BTU models.
Most of the reviews that have come intend to lean towards the positive end of the spectrum. Many are saying that the device goes above what they promise in terms of cooling spread – as far as 600 square feet of cooling. One of the biggest complaints is the look of the adhesive foam that is recommended to keep the air tube sealed tightly to the window. Many customers used other methods as the look of the foam was so unappealing.
- 450+ square foot cooling range
- LED display
- Powerful and dependable
- Unappealing adhesive foam
Haier HPP08XCR 8000 BTU Portable Air Conditioner
With removable mesh backing that can be washed to provide a reset to the filter, this unit promotes simple cleaning and easy comfort. The Haier HPP08XCR 8000 BTU comes with three fan modes, heating, dehumidifying, and cooling. The modes make this versatile cooler usable year-round in any climate. The 24-hour on/off cycle is a bonus to help you keep track of cooling or heating periods.
Rated at 8,000 BTU, this unit might not spread the cool air as far as other units on this list – only 150-200 square feet – it more than makes up for that in dependability and quality. Your room will remain cool for hours with this unit functioning. Noise is an issue that you’ll encounter with most portable air units and, while this air conditioner certainly is quieter than some competitors, it still can be rather loud at times. This device, much like the De’Longhi and the Eco-Air, comes with a clock cycle to assist in constant comfort throughout the day. Those other two devices offer more extensive features in other departments, however. They come in larger sizes if needed as well.
Customers who have purchased this device seem to praise it for the dependability it offers. This unit will keep you cool for a long time, and the remote control and 24-hour on/off setting makes it easy to use. As with many portable air conditioners, noise is cited as an issue for consumers. However, that seems to be the only issue they’ve mentioned, which bodes well for this unit.
- Cooler, heater, dehumidifier
- Cools entire room for hours
- 24-hour on/off cycles
- Smaller cone of cold air
- Loud at times
Senville SENP/10 Portable Air Conditioner
The first of two Senville products on this list, this Senville SENP/10 10,000-BTU air conditioner, works at a smaller range than its larger sibling, which you’ll encounter next. This is a 3-in-1 air conditioner that offers cooling and fan features. This device comes with a window installation kit, which makes for an easy in and out installation when you move from room to room.
As with many of the coolers on this list, this is a self-evaporating unit which removes the need for dumping and water removal. This is a fully functional and standard unit that will provide cooling to all areas of the room within it’s operating. The ability to remove the window installation and transport it to a different room with ease is a useful feature. It compares well with other devices on this list and offers a great cooling experience in warm weather. When compared to its larger sibling, which you’ll encounter next on this list, this device stands proud. Senville nailed the 10,000 BTU unit but faltered on the larger 14,000 BTU unit.
Many of the reviews on this product are associated with the customer service. Senville cares about their customers and are willing to reach out and solve any issue that arises. The care can be seen in the device as well as it functions as it is advertised and offers you a quick cooling experience.
- Easy to maneuver from room to room
- Remote controlled
- Loud noise level
Senville SENP/14 Portable Air Conditioner
The Senville SENP/14 is a 4-in-1 system that is rated at 14,000 BTU and offers a wide range of features from cooling to heating options. You’re receiving heating, cooling, fans, and turbos all in one compact and portable system. There is also a 1-year parts warranty to protect you in the event a part doesn’t work directly after shipping.
The best feature of this product is how simple it is to set up and use. It comes with a remote control that enables you to switch settings from almost anywhere in the room. Like many others on this list, this unit comes with a venting system that should be set up in a window or door leading outside. As far as portable air conditioners go, it does what it sets out to do and no more. It will keep your rooms cool or warm, depending on the season.
This is in no way a defective device. It’s a fantastic portable air conditioner, but we placed it at seven because its smaller sibling outshines it. Senville did well with their 10,000 BTU unit but not quite so with the 14,000 BTU unit.
Many who have purchased this product are quick to praise the easy installation process. It’s easy to set up and easy to use year-round. What some consumers didn’t appreciate was the noise it emitted, even at the lowest setting. This is one of the loudest products on the list, but that’s not an indication something is wrong in the machine, that’s how it works with this product.
- Easy to install and operate
- 1-year parts warranty
- You get what they advertise
- Sucks air from inside the house
Evapolar evaCHILL Personal Evaporative Air Cooler
This product is a little different from most of the others on the list, as it’s designed for more personal use. The small body of the Evapolar evaCHILL is excellent for keeping you cool while you work or sleep or simply relax. It has a range of up to 33 square feet and can be placed directly on your desk. Complete with LED lights, this cooler is designed for style as well as comfort.
If you’re looking for a personal cooler that will keep you cool as you sit at your desk and work, this is an excellent device for you. Evapolar evaCHILL utilizes cold water evaporation to cool the surrounding air. It is essential to understand that to operate this model; the consumer has to fill cold water into the unit. The tank is large enough to provide cooling for up to 9 hours. It’s difficult to compare it to the rest of the coolers on this list as it is not a true air conditioner; it is only suited to cool a small space. It’s one of the best personal coolers, but it won’t keep a room cool during hotter days.
This is one of three evaporative portable AC units on the list.
Many consumers agree that this is a fantastic option if you’re looking for a desk air conditioner to keep you cool. While it doesn’t have the spread that many other options on this list will, it is an effective and lasting cooling method for you. One flaw that many have with it is that the reservoir is too small for ice cubes and cool water must be utilized instead.
- Fantastic personal cooler
- Powerful cooling system
- Non-organic materials
- Too small for ice cubes
- Only 33 square foot cooling region
Honeywell CL25AE 52 Pint Indoor Portable Air Cooler
This product is a low-electricity option for keeping your large spaces cool during warmer months. The Honeywell CL25AE uses technology similar to Evapolar evaCHILL. The main difference is that it can cool up to 300 feet and consumes very little power when doing so. This cooler works best in hot climates with low humidity and should be used with open doors and windows with no permanent installation required.
The Honeywell portable air cooler has a unique approach to cooling when compared to other devices on this list. It utilizes an ice storage chamber to keep the air it produces cool and refreshing. While this works on paper, it does require users to fill either water or ice. The large cooling space it offers is a welcomed feature as it can keep multiple rooms comfortable on hot and humid days. It does contribute to the humidity in the room. It’s a useful product but be prepared for some spillage.
One of the biggest complaints we’ve seen from customers regarding this device is the mess it leaves. The unit seems to have an issue of spilling water everywhere. Whether it’s a defect of these specific units or as the product as a whole is uncertain. Other than the mess, this product is a fantastic method of keeping your home cool in non-humid regions.
- Low electricity
- Wide cooling area
- Works best in hot regions
- Spills water easily
- Doesn’t work well in humid areas
- Water level indicator inaccurate
SABD Air Conditioner 4-in-1 Cooler
This is one of the smallest options on the list coming in at 15 cm by 15.2 cm. The SABD 4-in-1 Cooler can hold 480 ml and will last, without being charged, for 4-6 hours. The size of this unit makes it extremely portable, and the ability to charge it with a USB allows you to bring it wherever you may need it.
This is easily the most portable device on this list as it allows you to charge it almost anywhere, and the size enables safe and easy transportation. The downside of the size of this device is that it can only cool a small range directly in front of it. If you’re looking for a device that works to keep you cool as you sleep, this is a fantastic personal air conditioner. If you’re looking for a unit that maintains a more considerable space cold, this might not be the unit for you.
The third of the three evaporative air coolers on this list, this device is a good option for you if you want to be able to carry your cooler around. In its performance, it doesn’t quite hold up when compared to the Evapolar evaCHILL or Honeywell’s CL25AE, but it will keep you cool in short increments.
Customers who have purchased this device seem to be happy with the ability to execute at the size it comes in. The device can keep a person cool for as long as it is in operation. With that being said, it is only able to keep one person comfortably cool at a time due to its small stature. Many who have purchased the device seem off-put by how little it is, but surprised by its ability.
- USB charging
- Easy to transport
- 4-in-1 function
- Large capacity
- Only cools one person at a time
- Shorter battery life
A Buyer’s Guide for Your Portable AC Unit
As you can see from our list, there are many different portable air conditioning units available. Finding the right one for you, however, can still be a difficult task. Here are a few tips for how to select the best portable air conditioner in Canada.
Features to Look Out For
The best portable air conditioning units should be versatile and able to adapt to the climate of your home. If you’re purchasing a dehumidifier, you’re avoiding a moist environment, but the heat remains. If you are buying a fan, a cool breeze will be supplied, but the humidity of your home will continue. With some portable units, you could receive cooling, humidity control, heating, and fan selections all in one package.
Remote controls add convenience and enable you to work your device from anywhere in the room. If it gets too hot for your liking, you won’t even need to get up to address the changes. Some units have timers included, so you won’t have to worry about the unit at all. Simply set active hours and sleeping hours, and your device will stick to the schedule.
A rare feature, but an exciting one, is the sleep mode addition. Many portable air conditioning units are decently noisy, something to look out for, but newer models are beginning to address this issue. A sleep mode allows you to keep the device running while you sleep, but at a much lower setting so that it’s nearly silent. Staying cool while sleeping is one of the biggest requirements a unit should have.
Size Your Portable AC to Your Room Size
Different apartment or home sizes will require different cooling ranges. The higher the BTU of the device you purchase, the larger the square footage of cooling you can expect. This is essential information that you should consider before buying a unit as the size of the room you’re looking to cool will affect which unit works best for you.
Here is a handy chart of how much cooling you’ll receive from the BTU level your unit has.
- 8,000 BTU = 200 sq. feet
- 10,000 BTU = 300 sq. feet
- 12,000 BTU = 400 sq. feet
- 13,000 BTU = 450 sq. feet
The larger your space, the higher the BTU for which you should look. The issue that comes with buying a unit that is larger than the space you’re cooling is the humidity. It might seem beneficial just to get the largest option as it provides more cooling, right? Not necessarily, and if the unit has too high of a BTU for your space, it won’t be able to get rid of enough humidity, and you find yourself with a different issue.
By knowing the size and BTU of a device that best fits your room, you’re better preparing yourself to find the perfect unit. Each person’s situation is different and calls for a different solution. Your space might not be as large as your friend’s space, and therefore you’ll want to choose a different unit to keep it cool.
Setup and Maintenance
Difficulty and complexity defeat the purpose of buying a portable air conditioning unit. You don’t want to receive something that is impossible to move around or becomes a semi-permanent fixture in your home. The setup of your device should be simple, and keeping it clean and operational should be as well.
For many devices, the shipping process can be rather tricky. You’ll want to allow your unit to regulate itself and become acclimated with your environment. To do this, simply set the device upright after being assembled and leave it alone for one hour. This gets the internal systems back on track and puts the device where it needs to be to provide calm and clean air.
When setting your device up, you’ll want to find a window that allows you to vent out the exhaust from the room. Stick the exhaust hose out the window and seal it up with the provided method of sealing. For some devices, this is a structured unit that can have the window supporting it; for others, an adhesive material might be provided.
To maintain the device, you might be required to empty the water traps that build up throughout the use. Some units have self-evaporating methods that get rid of the water on their own. Keep wiping the unit down to get rid of any dust or bacteria build-up. This ensures your air is fresh and healthy.
All in All
Finding the right portable air conditioner for your home doesn’t have to be difficult. Don’t let yourself get overwhelmed by the vast array of options and features different models advertise. By simply knowing what your space needs and what features specific devices offer, your shopping experience will go smoothly. While all ten units we reviewed are fantastic options and will each work endlessly to provide you with the comfort and cooling your home needs in the warmer months, we found Frigidaire FFPA0822U1 to be the best for most consumers. Finding the best portable air conditioner in Canada can be easy.