How to Choose an Apartment Air Conditioner

Although it's essential to buy an apartment air conditioner to keep you fresh during hot days, choosing the right one can seem stressful. That's because there are many options available, from portable AC units, central AC systems, to window ACs, and more.

Generally, you should select an apartment air conditioner that fulfills all your needs and budget. It should be more efficient, durable, and able to maintain a comfortable house temperature. So, what are the best air conditioning units for apartments?

In this guide, we'll explore the various air conditioning units for apartments and some tips on selecting the best air conditioner. Keep scrolling down to learn more.

Types of Air Conditioners for Apartments

The type of air conditioner you’ll choose will depend on your budget and the size of the room you intend to cool. Notably, air conditioners vary in size, weight, quality, noise level, durability, and installation procedures.

In a nutshell, we’ll look at the types of air conditioning units for apartments. For in-depth information, read more about the air conditioners types, including the benefits of each model.

1.    Central Air Conditioners

If you own a big house, the central air conditioner will be the best option to consider. It can circulate fresh air in your entire home through a series of ducts outfitted behind the ceilings and walls. However, it's one of the most expensive air conditioners.

2.    Room Air Conditioners

If you intend to cool an individual room in an apartment, the room air conditioner will probably be the most convenient option. Here are the three types of room ACs.

  • Window AC: You can install this type of AC inside a window to enjoy cold air without incurring many costs. It usually comes with an accordion panel and mounting bracket for easy installation.
  • Through-the-Wall AC: This air conditioner looks much alike to the window AC. But as the name suggests, you have to install it through your walls. It's an ideal option for people who want to use their windows at the same time.
  • Portable AC: It’s ideal for cooling single rooms in an apartment. The primary advantage of this AC is that you can move it from one place to another. However, some models require ventilation to vent out hot air in a room.

3.    Ductless Mini-Split Air Conditioners

If you live in a windowless room, this AC type will be the best option to consider. It does not need any ductwork to supply cold air to your room. The AC comprises of two units, the indoor unit to deliver cold air in a room and the outdoor unit to power the system.

Tips to Select the Best Air Conditioner for Apartment

Now that you know the various types of air conditioning units for apartments, you can go shopping. But first, you’ll have to consider factors such as your budget and house size.

Here are the steps to follow when searching for the best apartment air conditioner.

1.    Determine Your Budget

How much are you willing to spend on air conditioner installation? That’s the first and foremost thing to consider before investing in a cooling unit.

It’s no secret that installing air conditioners in your entire home is a costly venture. But the good news is that you can still find an affordable AC system that fits your budget.

Some of the costs that can influence your budget include the AC’s purchase price and the amount of money you’ll spend to power the AC system.

Here are the price ranges of different types of Air Conditioners.

Type of Air Conditioner

Average Price Range

Central AC System

$1,000 - $3,500

Window AC System

$150 - $500

Through-the-Wall AC Unit

$500 - $1,300

Portable AC Unit

$400 - $800

Ductless Mini-Split AC System

$700 -$2,500

You should also include the installation fee into your budget. However, the amount will depend on the size of the AC and the complexities involved during installation.

2.    Consider the Physical Space in Your House

The size of the house/room where you plan to install an air conditioner also matters a lot. Generally, you should buy an apartment size air conditioner to cool your entire home without straining. It should neither be too small nor too big for your house.

Before you walk into a shop to purchase an air conditioner, you should determine the size of your room. You can achieve that by measuring its width, length, and height. By doing so, you’ll easily calculate the capacity of AC required to cool your home.

3.    Select the Right Size of AC

Once you've determined the size of a room, you can quickly select an AC that can potentially cool your entire home. However, that mainly applies to air conditioners that are ideal for single rooms, such as portable, window, and through-the-wall units.

If the AC is too big or powerful for your room, the room's humidity will rise. Also, you will end up spending more money on electricity, increasing your energy bills.

On the other hand, if you install an undersized air conditioner in your room, the device will strain to cool the entire room. So, the AC won’t cool your house efficiently.

The British Thermal Unit (BTU) is the standard unit for measuring air conditioner capacity. When the BTU of an AC is high, it means its cooling power is high. Notably, this table can help you determine the right size of an AC for your room.

Area of Your Room

Capacity Required

250 sq. ft.

6,000 BTU

300 sq. ft.

7,000 BTU

350 sq. ft.

8,000 BTU

400 sq. ft.

9,000 BTU

450 sq. ft.

10,000 BTU

550 sq. ft.

12,000 BTU

700 sq. ft.

14,000 BTU

1,000 sq. ft.

18,00 BTU

Final Words

Once you’ve determined the size of your house and the capacity of AC needed, you can quickly select the best apartment air conditioner. However, you must make sure that the AC will fulfill your comfort needs. You can choose the portable AC, central AC, window AC, through-the-wall Ac, or the Ductless Mini-Split AC depending on your requirements.

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