A portable air conditioner is a handy option to cool a single room. They are also excellent support to central air conditioning systems that requires cool temperature demands of large households. In this article, we will discuss what a portable AC is and how do portable air conditioners work. We will also give you some tips to improve your portable AC’s efficiency and the different ways to remove moisture from your portable AC.
What Is a Portable Air Conditioner?
Unlike window-type or central air conditioning units, portable air conditioners do not require permanent installation. These units typically have caster wheels for easy transport, are relatively lightweight, and generally are between 28 and 34 inches wide. They are much simpler to mount and operate, plus they provide greater cooling conditions than basic fans.
Portable air conditioners are:
- Great for cooling down one or two rooms
- Removes humidity quicker
Most portable AC doesn’t need special sockets because they use a standard 115 to 120-volt power. However, there are 14,000 BTUs units, which are exceptions to this kind of energy source. These can allow their circuit to be on. Make sure that your portable AC fits your electrical outlets. Thus, it is crucial to learn how do portable air conditioners work.
How Do Portable Air Conditioners Work?
Portable air conditioners are straightforward to set up, and only a few models need special items to operate. But the entire purpose of a portable AC is to remove humidity around the room. As for all other air conditioners, the AC systems’ thermodynamic concepts are pretty much the same. The aim is to remove the heat from a room and release that heat outdoors. That’s why there are three main components in any portable conditioner:
- Refrigerant to cool the air
- Compressor to compress the refrigerant
- Fan to move the air
Portable ACs operate based on the refrigeration cycle. To better understand how do portable air conditioners work, here’s how they work:
- The portable air conditioner collects the hot and humid air within the room.
- Using condensation released by the coils, hot and humid air is cooled down within the unit. This cools up the temperature and removes the moisture. It is wherein the coils the heat from the air is transmitted to the refrigerant. The ‘evaporator coils’ converts the refrigerant fluid into a gas, making it cool.
- That same cool air is released back into the room.
- The AC accumulates moisture from the air, and the unit can transport the humidity outside, or you need to empty the bucket manually.
- The compressor then transfers the refrigerant to the ‘condenser coils.’ This process releases the heat through the window or sliding door from the exhaust vent.
- When it comes to how portable AC units operate, there are two somewhat different approaches. You’ve got a single and a two-hose unit, which are both the same, but airflow is slightly different.
What Are the Types of Portable Air Conditioners
- Single Hose Units – These units use a single hose to draw in, cool, and send the air out. It produces a negative pressure inside the room that allows hot air to flood through any outside gaps. In small spaces, these models are more effective.
- Dual Hose Units – These units have dual hoses, one for drawing in, cooling, circulating the cold air inside, and moving the hot air outside. As there are different hoses for the service, using dual hose units will prevent negative pressure. Another benefit of dual hose models is that, relative to single-hose systems, they are more robust in wider areas and do not entail more effort.
Tips to Improve the Efficiency of the Portable AC
Here are some tips to help you improve the efficiency of the portable AC:
- For optimum cooling of the setting, position the device correctly. It should be dependent on the unit’s area and ability.
- To minimize external humidity sources, keep all doors and windows closed while the devices are on.
- The machine needs to be cleaned and keep its filter clear of dust and other contaminants.
- Vent the machine correctly to make sure it functions properly.
How to Remove Portable Air Conditioner’s Moisture
One key difference in how do portable air conditioners work is extracting water from the unit. Most portable ACs on the market do not need dehumidification because they are already dehumidifiers. The only disadvantage of cooling the air down is how the unit removes the moisture.
Portable ACs are dehumidifiers per se, and it does an excellent job. A single unit AC can remove more than 30 pints of water. The main part of how portable AC units function is how they get rid of air moisture from the collected water.
- Self-evaporation – The water is evaporated through the exhaust vent and flushed out.
- Gravity-drain with built-in pump – through a hose, the accumulated water is drained out.
- The bucket – there is a bucket in some old portable AC systems. The water is stored there, and when it’s loaded, you have to empty the bucket manually. For lack of a better term, it is a poor idea to buy such a portable AC with a bucket.
Portable ACs work the same as refrigerators. It consists of a coolant, a compressor, and the process of evaporating and compressing the gas. Learning how to do portable air conditioners work is almost the same degree of technical level as the fridge, but we hope we have been able to simplify the complexities for you with this guide. Find out more about how appliances work.