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Summer

The Best AC Units to Keep Cool All Summer Long

Proper air conditioning doesn't have to come at an exorbitant cost.
Image credit: 吴 迪 (Unsplash)
Entrepreneur Leadership Network Contributor
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As the weather heats up, so too does your body, especially indoors where the insulation meant to protect you from the brutal winters is instead exacerbating the sun’s impact. While there are many ways to improve the circumstances of your environment during the summer, the best AC units are designed to decrease temperatures and enhance the overall condition of your air, hence the name.

Rather than suffer through it, note that proper air conditioning doesn’t have to come at an exorbitant cost. Plenty of window, portable, and floor AC units serve the same purpose as central air conditioning and achieve the same results. Depending on the layout of your house, you might need to invest in more than one to regulate the temperature of each room. But you can also buy a single unit now, as long as everyone is willing to stay in the same vicinity.

No matter your personal household needs, the best AC units will boost your quality of life and help you get things done without the scorching heat slowing you down. 

Best Overall: LG LW8017ERSM ($395)
Best Portable AC Unit: Black & Decker BPACT10WT ($355)
Best Home AC Unit: Frigidaire FFRE1833U2 ($699)
Best Split AC Unit: Senville Leto Series ($743)
Best Apartment AC Unit (Best Small/Mini): iBaste Portable Air Conditioner ($53) 
Best RV AC Unit: Coleman-Mach 48204-666 ($885)
Best Garage AC Unit: Mr. Cool DIY-18-HP-230B ($1,880.96)

Best Overall: LG LW8017ERSM ($395)

The best AC unit we’ve seen overall also happens to be the best window AC unit. Although it’s only specced to cover rooms up to 350 square feet, the LG LW8017ERSM comes in higher BTU variants that can cool up to 550-square foot spaces. Its defining feature is its record-low noise volume for the price (as low as 52dB), but its smart compatibility with virtual assistants such as Amazon Alexa and Google make it all the more compelling.

Best Portable AC Unit: Black & Decker BPACT10WT ($355)

For a basic, easy-to-setup, and affordable floor AC unit, look no further than the Black & Decker BPACT10WT. With the ability to cool, fan, and dehumidify small rooms, it can cover anywhere between 150 and 250 square feet. It might not have internet-connected smarts, but it does come with a remote you can use to command it from across the room. Feel the breeze at as low as 65 degrees with this Black & Decker staple.

Best Home AC Unit: Frigidaire FFRE1833U2 ($699)

Because larger houses require more robust solutions, the Frigidaire FFRE1833U2 is the best residential AC unit. Thanks to its 18,000 maximum BTU, this window-mounted model can cool rooms measuring up to 1,020 square feet and offers dehumidification up to 5.2 pints per hour. A remote is included, though you can also use buttons featured on the front panel. The only downside is the power cable, which necessitates a special 230-volt electrical outlet.

Best Split AC Unit: Senville Leto Series ($743)

Split AC units might be expensive at the initial point of sale, but experts will tell you they yield the best value in the long haul. Seeing as they can cover as much as 2,000 square feet at the high end, the Senville Leto Series — the best split AC unit — can lay claim to SEER ratings up to 19, making it one of the most energy efficient AC units you can buy. Not that you should need it, but this mighty 4-in-1 appliance provides low temperatures down to 5 degrees Fahrenheit.

Best Apartment AC Unit: iBaste Portable Air Conditioner ($53)

When you live in an apartment, you’ll want the best mini AC unit for the job, and the iBaste Portable Air Conditioner fits that bill. Small rooms demand the best small AC unit; at 8 x 7 x 7 inches this true wireless option will squeeze into even the closest quarters. You won’t strain yourself moving it from location to location either, as it weighs only 2.4 pounds. All you have to do is charge it up, fill it with water, and the iBaste will be ready to go for the next 3-5 hours.

Best RV AC Unit: Coleman-Mach 48204-666 ($885)

Roaming the country in your Winnebago calls for some much needed chill time. The Coleman-Mach 48204-666 is bespoke and premium, made specifically for campers, but that luxury comes at a cost. Still, its medium-profile textured shroud will blend right into your existing setup, blowing 15,000 BTU worth of clean, high quality air, covering somewhere between 550 and 700 square feet, perfect for RVs.

Best Garage AC Unit: Mr. Cool DIY-18-HP-230B ($1,880.96)

Given how costly it can be to cool an entire garage, you need something energy efficient, and the Mr. Cool DIY-18-HP-230B is the best garage AC unit bar none. Leveraging a split system design, the 36,000 BTU version can churn out hot and cold air across 1,500 square feet. Though the less extravagant 18,000 base model is restricted to 750 square feet, you won’t be disappointed by its app-controlled, energy efficient performance.