Everyone wants peace and quiet and since the advent of portable ACs, the hunt for library quiet portable air conditioners has been real – and hard.
Manufacturers (fully conscious of how the demand for library quiet portable ACs is on the rise) haven’t helped matters much. Today, everything they manufacture that remotely looks like an air conditioning unit bears the nomenclature ‘quiet’ or some variant at some point in its advert.
This doesn’t help matter much – especially if you’re super sensitive to sound, need to make certain that your baby sleeps sweet at night or just simply want some noise free cool operation so that your thoughts can roam or your brain focus.
Before now, this was hard – and near impossible (all thanks to the legion of half truths and misinformation out there).
Complimenting our ranking of the best portable air conditioners today, this article is not just dedicated to quiet operation and your ultimate peace of mind amidst luxury: it has made it its very own soul and purpose.
The Top 5 Best Quietest Portable Air Conditioners Of 2019 In Summary
We live in a super busy world and most of us have super tight schedules.
It is thus a smart thing to summarize the links to these top 5 quietest portable cooling options for readers who are in a hurry and simply want to navigate and take a look directly.
For such readers, here’s your list. Please, note that the links open to Amazon directly.
- Haier Portable Electronic Air Conditioner with Remote 12,000 BTU, HPC12XCR.
- Whynter Elite ARC-122DHP 12,000 BTU Dual Hose Portable Air Conditioner And Heater.
- SereneLife 8,000 BTU Portable Air Conditioner.
- Friedrich ZoneAire PH14B Portable 4-In-One Air Conditioner, 13,500 BTU, 115 Volt.
- Honeywell Portable Air Conditioner, HL09CESWK.
For the rest of us who usually want more answers than lists and links, there’s nothing more worthy than continuing with the super detailed article below.
Below, we’ll treat the importance of quietness in this age and time, take a look at the concept of portable ACs and why they are so seductive, take a look at the question whether a portable AC can be graveyard quiet and a plethora of other related issues.
Finally, we’ll wrap up with our carefully selected top 5 best portable ACs of 2019 and importantly, will tell you why every unit on the list made it there and what are its greatest features that seduced us to an inclusion.
Let’s begin (serious) business.
Noise And The Importance Of Quietness In The 21st Century
In the 21st century, noise pollution is one of the biggest health risks in city life.
From traffic, airports that are situated close to residential areas, industrial machines (and mowers) right up to public places and human speech, noise does not only annoy – it terribly gets on the nerves of anyone who is unfortunate enough to comes across it.
However, if noise were only good at getting on the nerves of persons who are exposed to it, it would have been way easier to resolve and would have been considered something manageable.
According to Medical Express, noise, aside been one of the biggest pollutants in modern cities; it is also closely linked (directly) to an increased risk of early death!
This is because, noise stimulates the central nervous system in a manner that forces it to release some hormones that increases the risk of hypertension and many other cardiovascular and cerebrovascular diseases like strokes and heart attacks.
These are the challenges one faces daily in the course of trying to make ends meet.
Now, after a very tiring day (faced with potentially life threatening noise exposures) it only makes sense to try to cut off noise off from one’s apartment as much as technology allows.
Now, what better place to start than opting for portable air conditioners that offer library standard quietness for one’s living and working spaces?
The Concept Of A Portable AC And Why It Is So Seductive
Traditionally, ACs were generally of the central variant or the window-insertable.
This means, if you needed to cool down your space, you either had to get a humongous central unit or if you were on a budget, opt for an often loud, window option.
To a great extent, these two options worked – and were (and still remain) great options in their own respect.
However, some special needs were not met with these two (popular) options.
For instance, some windows did not give room enough or were not plainly designed to have the window ACs fitted in. Usually, too, such rooms or places were small to the point that installing central air conditioning made little sense.
It was in the midst of this that the concept of a portable air conditioner was conceived and became so popular.
The newly designed and available air conditioners served the purpose of being of service to places that neither central nor the window AC type fitted with satisfaction.
In addition to filling a whole new niche that had been begging to be filled for sometime, it also ensured something that up till then, was unknown: the unit could be moved from room to room, from place to place as actual demand necessitated.
This, certainly, was the deal.
However, with these awesome new creation, something else came up that bothered shoppers: its noise.
Most portable air conditioners were damn noisy!
Can A Portable Air Conditioner Be Grave Yard Quiet?
A portable air conditioner comprises of several parts all rolled into one: evaporator, condenser, expansion valve, compressor, the air flow vents and an array of other units and parts.
As indicated above, all these parts are rolled into one – creating a portable unit that can easily be lifted and used from place to place.
The portability such a design ensures has its inherent advantages. However, like all things good, there are also disadvantages that follow: the parts often responsible for noise are all rolled into one and unlike the slit unit (for example), are close to you enough to wreck havoc – that is, if your unit permits that manner of havoc.
However, there are units that are specially manufactured to address this challenge. for such units, design is inherently meant to be as quiet as can be.
For example, such portable ACs do not feature the belt connecting the motor to the blower; thus ensuring for a far smoother and quieter operation.
But, like the window type AC, all the working parts of the air conditioner that ensure a cooling effect are not just in the room with you, they are close to you! Can you still get a super quiet experience?
Yes – to a great extent.
We’ll discuss, in the next section, what qualifies as ‘quiet’ in the world of portable air conditioners since we have already seen by their various designs and manufacture, some portable ACs are indeed meant to be as quiet as the tech powering them allows.
What Qualifies As ‘Quiet’ In The World Of Portable AC?
The concept of sound and noise is relative to a large extent: what Miss ‘A’ considers noise of the unbearable caliber may just be what Mr. ‘X’ considers tolerable – to a large extent. Thus, how sounds affect us is largely a product of our sensitivities, which varies widely and is largely subjective.
To remove that subjectivity and bring in an ounce of objectivity, a system for measuring sound was developed – decibels (abbreviated dB) and later, a tool for testing the ambient sound of any place of choice became commercially available in the market. It is called the sound level meter.
With a sound level meter thus, it is easy to record (without any sort of bias) the noise present in a place, be it environmentally inspired or noise caused by a unit such as a portable air conditioner.
With the meter too, the following table has been inspired – backed up by real Physics:
|Table 1. Sound Intensity Levels and Interpretations|
|Sound intensity level β (dB)||Intensity I(W/m2)||Example/effect|
|0||1 × 10–12||Threshold of hearing at 1000 Hz|
|10||1 × 10–11||Rustle of leaves|
|20||1 × 10–10||Whisper at 1 m distance|
|30||1 × 10–9||Quiet home|
|40||1 × 10–8||Average home & library|
|50||1 × 10–7||Average office, soft music|
|60||1 × 10–6||Normal conversation|
|70||1 × 10–5||Noisy office, busy traffic|
|80||1 × 10–4||Loud radio, classroom lecture|
|90||1 × 10–3||Inside a heavy truck; damage from prolonged exposure|
|100||1 × 10–2||Noisy factory, siren at 30 m; damage from 8 h per day exposure|
|110||1 × 10–1||Damage from 30 min per day exposure|
|120||1||Loud rock concert, pneumatic chipper at 2 m; threshold of pain|
|140||1 × 102||Jet airplane at 30 m; severe pain, damage in seconds|
|160||1 × 104||Bursting of eardrums|
As can be gleamed from the table above, anything less than 60 dB (as measured by a sound level meter) is considered quiet. Specifically, any portable AC with a noise rating (in dB) less or equal to 60 is considered quiet.
We will thus make certain that all models included here do not cross this threshold.
Shall we begin the real business of the day?
The Top 5 Best Quietest Portable Air Conditioners Of 2019 In Detail
Carefully chronicled below are the top 5 best quietest portable air conditioners money can buy at the moment.
The pattern of the review will be simple and straightforward:
- A quick review of the unit.
- Top features and specs of the portable AC &
- Decibel rating of the AC and why we think you’ll love and appreciate the unit.
1. Haier Portable Electronic Air Conditioner with Remote 12,000 BTU, HPC12XCR
Generally, there are two (sad) scenarios that bother the average homeowner who is interested in keeping his or her home clean, tidy, cool and feeling fresh: during the rains (or Spring), humidity is a real challenge – keeping everything in white patches, accompanied with a foul smell that better belongs to the bins.
During Summer however, the challenge is real – and takes another different dimension: heat waves that render fans completely useless and generally, ruin the days for those who either cannot afford air conditioning or those who work in places where air conditioning cannot be practically applied.
Most air conditioners (the portable variants inclusive) only focus on making their units good at cooling. The general philosophy of these manufacturers is that, if it cools, why bother with other added features (that only serve to make the whole unit bulky?)
Mold, naturally, in the spring, has a field day – if you use any of such units. Matters are way worse if you work away from home during the day and have to shut the windows tight and keep the doors locked.
A smart portable air conditioner designed to keep you cool and awesome all year round, the unit famously sports a dehumidifier, a function that tackles humidity in a room and sees to it that no mold (nor the impression or smell of mold) ever develops or forms around your living space.
Powered with a motor that is dead silent, this Hair portable AC is the quietest portable air conditioner on our list here – and most likely, the quietest option on the market.
Three cooling and fan speeds, a window exhaust kit that evaporates the water (read: NOT DRAIN – EVAPORATE) – leaving virtually no trace of water to clear off and importantly, a timer with 24 hour on/off function, the unit is fully programmable to work with your lifestyle, cooling your space just when you’re about to come in and saving power when you’re away, hard at work (or play) elsewhere.
What is cooler or smarter than that?
Top Features & Specs Of The Portable AC
- Extremely quiet operation.
- Dehumidifying mode for tackling mold and humidity common during Spring.
- Electronic controls with full function remote control for ease of use.
- Digital time/temperature display and control with 24 hour on/off timer for smart use.
- 3 cooling and fan speeds for varying needs.
- Cools rooms 350-450 square feet.
- Unit Dimensions:27.75 in H x 16.88 in W x 14.25 in D.
- Window exhaust kit with exhaust hose length 5.0 ft
- Evaporation function that sees to it that water is simply evaporated via the exhaust hose instead of simply draining it.
Decibel Rating & Why We Think You’ll Love This Unit
As tested, the Haier portable electronic air conditioner with remote control scores 40 dB on the scale when tested with a standard sound level meter.
This sound level, it is to be understood, is the sum average of the both the starting and operating sounds of the portable air conditioning unit, combined.
From the table 1 above (sound intensity levels and interpretations), a sound level of 40 dB falls under the category of average home & library.
Thus, it is safe to conclude that this unit is actually library quiet!
However, besides its library quietness, we sincerely think you’ll love this unit for its great convenience: the remote control, the fact that the timer is actually a 24 hours option and can be set to start up and shut down at preset intervals and importantly, the reality that the unit does does not actually permit water to accumulate; the exhaust hose smartly evaporates the room’s humidity, leaving you with a nice and clean ‘duty free’ reality.
What could be more practical in a super crazy world hell bent on making certain that you lose your sanity?
Too much talk about the most quiet portable AC in the world already. Check out the Haier Portable Electronic Air Conditioner with Remote 12,000 BTU, HPC12XCR on Amazon directly and see its features and specs directly for yourself.
There too, you’ll certainly meet other folks who have used the unit and get to read their unbiased opinions, directly.
2. SereneLife Portable Air Conditioner, 12,000 BTU + Heat
No one appreciates enormous power bills that often look like one runs a factory. As a matter of fact, when the bill comes, frowns usually follow.
The reason is simple and quite straight to the point: most of us get power bills that we sincerely believe are well too much for our pockets or we believe that we should be getting less, all other things being equal.
However, in as much as we grumble and detest the power bill payment process, we know that we still have to pay – or risk service discontinuation (and possibly, prosecution – depending on where you live). The sad thing is: who appreciates service discontinuation, especially in the peak of either Winter or Summer?
The answer is simple and straight to the point: NO ONE.
The sad part is that, to avoid this reality, we keep paying through the nose and keep getting poorer, month by month! Technically, we get poorer while the power companies get richer and richer.
Looking inwards at this point naturally follows and it is only logical to begin to see how to smartly lower the monthly power bills that get served.
Now, what smarter way is there to achieve this than actually getting power consuming units that are energy efficient; units that work and power as they should with less power requirement and consumption?
This is where the SereneLife 8,000 BTU Portable Air Conditioner, 12,000 BTU + Heat comes in.
If you’re interested in saving good bucks at the end of the month via your power bills and at the same time would appreciate something powerful and quiet (by means of a portable air conditioner and heater), then, I’m dead certain this is your unit!
Top Features & Specs Of The Portable AC
- Lower power demanding motor that sees to it that your power bills are at the barest minimum.
- Four functions available: AC, heater, fan and dehumidifier. This is a truly versatile unit.
- Casters and an overall light weight reality. This makes it possible for the unit to be easily moved from room to room and or from place to place.
- 1200 BTU power that is capable of cooling (at the touch of button) up to 450 + square feet.
- Side facing air vents that actually swing, serving the room where the unit is placed directly, in a majestic fashion.
- Low noise motor that ensures quiet operation.
Decibel Rating & Why We Think You’ll Love This Unit
If not that there exist other units that have a lower noise rating when compared to this unit, we’d have put it up first. The reason? This is our personal favorite.
Why? You may ask.
The answer is simple and straightforward: caster wheels, a light weight reality, lower power consumption (as compared to the competition) and side air vents that circulate air directly where it is needed.
Now, what does one needs again when all these options are present?
When we tested (that was all that was remaining for us to fall totally in love), the portable AC returned 52 dB on the noise level meter!
From our table 1 shared on the post, this translates to the noise levels that are present in an average office or that which soft music emits.
Isn’t is awesome enough – especially when the other features that distinguish the unit are factored into consideration.
A good thing, it is said, does not require many words. Kindly check out the details of the SereneLife 8,000 BTU Portable Air Conditioner, 12,000 BTU + Heat on Amazon, read the reviews there and decide if this is an option that you’ll be willing to own and use both in the short and long run.
3. Friedrich ZoneAire PH14B Portable 4-In-One Air Conditioner, 13,500 BTU, 115 Volt
Most of the portable air conditioners today sold on the market have a single hose design.
This design means that, a single hose is responsible for both air intake and the exhaust.
While this design is dominant today in the industry and makes things appear neater to the eye: it has one fundamental flaw: it makes the unit bearing such a design less effective in both the cooling and exhaust process.
The net implication of this is that a unit’s cooling is not cooling as great as it should and not managing its exhaust duties as brilliantly as it should either.
Either way (or looking at both issues separately), you’ll understand one thing and one thing alone: efficiency isn’t at its peak in such scenarios.
The primary reason for this sort of design is simple and quite straight to the point: cost saving.
However, what is you’re interested in a unit that cools maximally, tackles its exhaust in the most brilliant of manners and importantly, stays fairly quiet while all doing its thing?
You’ll be describing, in great detail, the Friedrich ZoneAire PH14B Portable 4-In-One Air Conditioner, 13,500 BTU, 115 Volt.
Designed with smart rolling casters and (equally) smart handles for easy mobility, the unit features a dual hose design that sees to it that one hose is dedicated to air intake and another, to exhaust – a design that truly helps with the overall efficiency of the unit and its cooling prowess.
This, we are certain, is the portable AC you’re looking for if you’re interested in both efficiency and a truly quiet operation on both one and the same hand 🙂
Top Features & Specs Of The Portable AC
5. Whynter Elite ARC-122DHP 12,000 BTU Dual Hose Portable Air Conditioner And Heater
In many places of the world, Summer brings the need to cool things down. This is a season when (depending on where you live) you might actually curse yourself for not having a smart cooling system close.
However,during the Winter, the story is usually different and takes quite another turn. Depending on your location, the Winter may prove to be quite merciless, with temperatures that may very well be in the sub-zero regions.
When such happens (and you’re someone who is already in love with all things portable), then, you’ll need a portable space heater to keep things nice, warm and cozy around your personal space.
The challenge is that, a personal space heater is another expense entirely and depending on your budget, may not prove convenient at the moment at all.
If you’re space constrained too, you’ll soon find out that having two portables (a space heater and a portable AC) all in one constrained space isn’t the best way to manage space that is already tight.
This is when you’ll sincerely appreciate the thoughtfulness and versatility of the Whynter Elite ARC-122DHP 12,000 BTU Dual Hose Portable Air Conditioner And Heater.
The unit, besides being notorious for maintaining a library quiet operation, also features a heater, beautifully integrated with the portable air conditioner.
This way, you get super silent operation in the Summer from the air conditioning function of the machine and during the Winter, you simply switch modes and instead, welcome gusts of warm air, heating up the chilly atmosphere around your personal space.
Isn’t smart versatility a truly awesome thing?
Top Features & Specs Of The Portable AC
- This Whynter Elite portable air conditioner features a heater: no need to buy another machine for heating your personal space in the Winter.
- Four operational modes are standard (all capable of serving up to 400 square feet of space): air conditioner, fan, heater and dehumidifier.
- Full thermostatic control (61°F – 89°F) with digital readout. This helps with temperature sensitive realities and works, flawlessly.
- 24 hour programmable timer that can be set to power the portable AC on and off at designated intervals.
- Remote control reality with activated carbon air filter.
- Maximum power consumption: 1000W; Dehumidifying capacity: 76 pints per day; 3 fan speeds; Air Flow (at high speed): 264m3/h / 155CFM
Decibel Rating & Why We Think You’ll Love This Unit
As tested, the Whynter Elite ARC-122DHP 12,000 BTU Dual Hose Portable Air Conditioner And Heater scored 55 dB on the sound level meter.
This sound level, it should be understood, is the sum average of both the starting and the operating sound level all rolled into one and presented as an average (the starting sound is a little more than this while the operation sound is a little less).
From our little table above setting out sound levels and their corresponding comparisons in real life, it is clear that the sound level of this unit falls between a normal, everyday office and a conversation.
If a regular office or everyday normal pitch conversations are not too noisy or annoying for you, our bet is that, you’ll also find this unit extremely quiet and worth both the money expended on buying it and most importantly, the time used to research it.
Feature and spec wise, we were instantly attracted to the fact that the unit comes in four awesome, practical and impressive modes: fan, AC, dehumidifier and heater.
However, the most interesting and by far, the most practical option that makes a ton of sense to us the heater option.
With Winter (always) by the corner – and sometimes, unpredictable temperature falls through the night, it is impossible not to appreciate the value of such an added feature: certainly, you’ll not only have use for it, you’ll be grateful that you don’t need to spend extra to get your personal space heated up and importantly, you don’t need to struggle with space or master the art of re-arrangement if your apartment, office or work space is small.
Now is the time to take a very close and interested look at the Whynter Elite ARC-122DHP 12,000 BTU Dual Hose Portable Air Conditioner And Heater on Amazon, read the reviews of other buyer (and users) before you, take a good look at its specs and features and then, decide.
How We Got This List And Tested
What To Look For In A Portable AC Aside Quietness
Summary Of The Library Quiet Portable AC Today
P.S: Frequently Asked Questions About Portable Air Conditioners