Portable Air Conditioner vs Ductless Mini-Split, Which is Best for Me?

Room with air conditioner

For decades, people have been enjoying central air conditioning in their homes as well as window air conditioners, but in today’s world, there are two other options. You can choose between a portable air conditioner that you can move from room to room when you are trying to stay cool in different areas of your home or you can opt for a ductless mini-split air conditioner which essentially offers you even more mobility. In this article, we will compare the two types to see which one is best for you and your home.

If you like to keep the air conditioning at 68 degrees but your partner or children like it to be a little warmer, maybe around 72 degrees, you can solve all of that with a mini split ductless system. But what exactly is a mini-split and what is a portable air conditioner? Read on for more information.

What is a Portable Air Conditioner System?

A portable air conditioner is a self-contained portable system that you can cool a single room with but can also move around if the output host fits into a window. This type of air conditioner normally sits on the floor and comes with an installation kit so you can easily set it up. Most models have wheels so you can move them from room to room, which makes them a great alternative to window air conditioning units.

Pros of a Portable Air Conditioner

The first pro to a portable air conditioner is that they are way cheaper to purchase than a central air conditioning system, as well as a ductless mini split. You can pick up one of these types of air conditioners for well under $1,000, which means you can buy several of them for each room in your house if you want to.

A portable air conditioner is great for creating different temperature zones in your house. This means that you can keep your bedroom a chilly 65 degrees but your children can have their room staying around 71 degrees.

Portable air conditioners usually use less electricity than central air conditioners do but they can only cool one room or one area of your house at a time. But if you like having an air conditioner that is mobile that you can move around, a portable air conditioner will become your best friend.

Cons of a Portable Air Conditioner

Portable air conditioners have a basin that collects the water from condensation on very humid days that must be emptied on a regular basis or you can possibly have a hose that you can run to a drain. You will only be able to cool one room of your house at a time with a portable air conditioner that can also be very noisy while it isn’t in operation. A portable air conditioner has everything in one casing, which means it can cause more noise indoors. A portable air conditioner can dehumidify the air, but only while it is in operation, since once the unit shuts off, so does the humidity control.

Pros of a Ductless Mini-Split

Ductless mini-split systems have a seasonal energy efficiency ratio of about 33, which means they are very energy efficient. They are very quiet while they’re in operation since the noisy part of the unit is outside and the indoor heads are very quiet. Mini-splits can heat and cool with equal efficiency and can save you as much as 30 percent on your energy bill. They can keep you comfortable all year round since they have a heating component to them.

A mini-split system offers the flexibility of being able to control the temperature in each room or zone that has a unit. They are mounted to a wall but can also be mounted onto a floor or ceiling and have a sensor that can detect where you are in the room to provide the highest comfort level. Mini-split systems have variable speed compressors which means they deliver the right amount of heat and cold when necessary. They can also provide constant air quality control and dehumidify the air.

Cons of a Ductless Mini-Split

Ductless mini-split systems are not portable, so once they’re put in place, they need to stay there. Some people do not want the head of a ductless mini-split to take up wall space. A ductless mini-split system is much more costly than a portable air conditioner but is well worth the money if that’s the route you choose to go.

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