The 8 best air conditioner 2024, Tests by Experts

During the summertime, one thing is certain: Summer can either be a challenge to endure or a delightful experience to enjoy. By selecting and installing the best air conditioner 2024, you can certainly lean towards the latter, relishing a cool and dry living space.

The combination of high temperatures and humidity can make us feel uncomfortable, as they hinder our body’s ability to release heat to the surroundings, resulting in excessive sweating. However, an air conditioner can effectively combat this by cooling and drying the air, reducing both the heat and humidity indoors.

Air conditioners come with their own set of advantages and disadvantages, but they can be ideal for specific spaces. Food and Meal‘s team has conducted rigorous testing, extensive research, and expert vetting to compile a list of the best air conditioners suitable for bedrooms, rooms with tall ceilings, and even windowless areas. Armed with this knowledge, you can make an informed decision before purchasing, ensuring that you’ll remain cool and dry throughout the entire summer season.

Best Air Conditioner 2024
Best air conditioner 2024

What to Consider when buy a best air conditioner?

Cooling Capability

To determine the appropriate strength of an air conditioner for your room, you can use a simple formula: Multiply the room’s square footage by 20. This calculation will provide an estimate of the required British Thermal Units (BTUs) for effective cooling.

Cooling capability is measured in BTUs, representing the amount of thermal energy an air conditioner can extract from a specific area per unit of time. A higher BTU rating indicates a more powerful air conditioner that can efficiently cool larger spaces. In essence, the more extensive the area you want to cool, the higher the BTU capacity you’ll need.

Energy Efficiency

When it comes to energy efficiency in window air conditioners, the CEER (Combined Energy-Efficiency Ratio) is the rating you should look out for. A higher CEER number indicates better efficiency. It’s essential to note that CEER is specific to window air conditioners and differs from SEER (Seasonal Energy-Efficiency Ratio), which applies to heat pumps and central AC systems.

CEER represents the ratio of cooling capacity to the electricity consumption of the appliance. It takes into account the efficiency both when the compressor is running and when the unit is in standby mode, providing a comprehensive picture of its overall efficiency.

Some air conditioners may still use the older but still valid EER (Energy Efficiency Ratio) number. The same principle applies here – a higher EER is better than a lower one in terms of energy efficiency. By paying attention to CEER or EER ratings, you can make an informed choice and select an air conditioner that offers optimal energy efficiency, helping you save on electricity costs while keeping your space cool and comfortable.

Window Versus Portable

When it comes to air conditioning options, there are two main types: window air conditioners and portable air conditioners. Each has its pros and cons, so it’s essential to consider your specific needs and preferences before making a choice.

Window air conditioners are sturdy appliances, weighing around 50 to 80 pounds, making installation easier with an extra set of hands. They are installed directly in a window and can obstruct about half of the view from the window. Proper installation is crucial to prevent any accidents or security risks, and using a window bracket is a recommended way to ensure a safe setup. For maintenance, it’s advisable to remove the unit in the fall, clean it, and store it indoors to prolong its lifespan.

On the other hand, portable air conditioners are more flexible in terms of installation. You only need to mount the discharge hose (or hoses) to the outdoors using a window bracket, which is a simpler process compared to window units. Portable air conditioners also block less of the window’s view. However, they produce condensation that needs to be managed. Some units have a feature to disperse the condensation into the discharge air stream or let it evaporate back into the room naturally. But many portable units require regular emptying of the drain pan or routing the condensation drain hose to a floor drain. Another option is to use a condensate pump to drain the water outside through a small plastic tube.

In summary, window air conditioners offer sturdy cooling but may obstruct the view and require careful installation. Portable air conditioners are more versatile in installation but require periodic management of condensation. Considering your preferences, available space, and maintenance capabilities will help you decide between the two options.

 The 8 best air conditioner 2024

Best Price

LG LW1517IVSM Window Air Conditioner

4.4 (987 ratings) $559.35
Cooling a big room doesnt always have to cost you big bucks. Its all about efficiency. Our 14,000 BTU Inverter unit can cool a large room up to 800 sq. ft. without breaking the bank. The Auto Restart will automatically turn the unit back on following a power loss caused by a storm, wind, or extreme heat- so you dont have to.
Wi-Fi enabled Insulation panels included for installation
Quiet operation
Control app needs an update

The largest air conditioner tested was an LG model, a robust and substantial appliance equipped with a multi-speed compressor for precise cooling control. Unlike traditional compressors that run at a constant speed and cycle on and off to cool the area, this compressor adjusts its speed to maintain a steady temperature.

This innovative multi-speed and adaptable design, known as LG’s dual-inverter, is not commonly found in window air conditioners. However, it proves to be an effective method for maintaining a consistent temperature, reducing energy consumption, and minimizing wear on the compressor.

For light sleepers, the LG LW1522IVSM or the Midea air conditioner below are excellent options, as both models offer sleep modes that reduce cooling to save energy and minimize noise while you rest. Overall, this air conditioner operates quietly, efficiently reaching the desired temperature and maintaining a steady hum that makes you forget it’s just a few feet away.

Additionally, LG deserves praise for being the only manufacturer to include insulated panels that can be installed on either side of the air conditioner. These panels help reduce energy transfer between the indoor and outdoor spaces, enhancing the unit’s energy efficiency.

Moreover, the air conditioner’s Wi-Fi capability enables remote control through your phone. This feature allows you to turn the AC on and off from anywhere, so you can cool and dehumidify the space before returning home. The combination of advanced technology, quiet operation, and energy-saving features makes this LG air conditioner a top-notch and convenient choice for your cooling needs.

Best Price

Midea U-Shaped Smart Inverter Window Air Conditioner

4.4 (15595 ratings) $246.51
Ultra Quiet - The U-shaped design blocks the noise from the outside compressor. Long-distance Airflow up to 20 feet - The strong Airflow allows you to feel the cold air up to 20 feet away. Warranty - 1 Year Parts & Labor Warranty comes with each Midea product to ensure the quality of our brand to our customers. Our team is happy to help if any questions or issues arise, and make sure to register your product on our website for even faster support in the future.
Exceptional dehumidifying quality
Hard to control the drip

The Midea U Smart Inverter AC unit stands out as the quietest air conditioner we’ve tested. What makes it truly unique is its “U” shape design, which allows you to close the window around its center, effectively isolating the compressor (typically located outside the building) from the indoor space. This special design necessitates a specialized mounting bracket, making the Midea U more mechanically complex but significantly quieter.

Contributing to its low noise level is the use of an inverter compressor, similar to the LG model we previously mentioned. The compressor adjusts its speed based on demand, rather than simply turning on and off, resulting in a smoother operation.

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Moreover, the Midea U is the only air conditioner in our tests equipped with auto louvers that move vertically. This feature enhances the distribution of air throughout the space, improving overall cooling performance.

With its impressive BTU capacity and the advanced compressor technology, this window air conditioner can quickly bring indoor temperatures down to comfortable levels. Another practical feature is its angled air filter, providing easy access to the filter panel, which tips out at an approximate 45-degree angle for hassle-free maintenance.

All in all, the Midea U Smart Inverter AC unit offers a combination of cutting-edge design and features, delivering a quiet and efficient cooling experience for your indoor space.

Best Price

Frigidaire FFRA051WAE Window Air Conditioner

4.4 (14405 ratings) $114.56
The Frigidaire 5,000 BTU window air conditioner keeps your room cool and comfortable at all times with Effortless™ Temperature Control. Easily install this air conditioner; with the Adjustable Side Panels, the side panels will extend to best fit your window. Capture dust from the air and keep your air conditioner working efficiently with our easy-to-clean washable filter. Compatible with our mounting bracket (B0872XNZP3) and side panel (B0872Y4MCL).
Washable filter is easy to clean
May be too noisy for some

If you have a small bedroom and are in need of affordable cooling, the Frigidaire window air conditioner is an excellent choice, offering effective cooling at a reasonable cost. While we haven’t had a hands-on experience with this unit yet, we are impressed by its low-effort, high-efficiency design, tailored to bring comfort to small, hot, and stuffy spaces.

The appliance features a straightforward two-knob design for easy operation. The top knob allows you to set the desired cooling temperature, and the built-in thermostat takes care of cycling the air conditioner on and off to maintain the temperature within the desired range.

For added comfort, the bottom knob controls the fan speed in two modes: with cooling and without cooling. You can adjust the fan speed to high or low, ensuring a comfortable output without excessive noise, even while you’re watching TV or engaging in other activities.

However, if you want to schedule the cooling output, you’ll need to use a third-party appliance timer since this basic unit lacks smart functionality to connect with your phone or other devices.

Overall, the Frigidaire window air conditioner is an excellent and budget-friendly option for efficiently cooling small spaces, providing you with a comfortable environment without breaking the bank.

Best Price

Haier ESAQ406T Window Air Conditioner

4.3 (2024 ratings) $195.55
Haier Appliances is dedicated to providing the right solutions for rooms of any size. Our Energy Star certified window air conditioners are designed to offer exceptional comfort with minimal noise, making these products versatile and easy to use.
Quiet operation
Easy installation
Vents don’t direct air well

While we haven’t conducted our own test on the Haier ESAQ406T, it has garnered a solid reputation as one of the quietest window air conditioners available. The real confirmation came from a family member, known for being an extremely light sleeper, who recently purchased this AC and couldn’t stop raving about it.

According to his experience, among the numerous air conditioners he has owned over the years, the Haier ESAQ406T stands out as the quietest. It boasts noise-canceling features, including an internal compressor blanket that effectively dampens vibrations and reduces sound. As he described it, when the compressor is running, the AC produces only a slight noise, comparable to that of a refrigerator.

Furthermore, this air conditioner boasts an impressive Energy-Efficiency Rating of 12.2, contributing to reduced electricity consumption and helping to mitigate the usual spike in your summer electric bills caused by running the AC continuously.

Although we haven’t personally tested it, the enthusiastic recommendation from a satisfied and notoriously light sleeper family member speaks volumes about the Haier ESAQ406T’s quiet operation and energy-efficient performance. It could be an excellent choice for those seeking a peaceful and cost-effective cooling solution for their living space.

Best Price

Windmill Air Conditioner

4.3 (2024 ratings) $349.00
The Windmill AC is designed to fit windows with a width of 23-37 inches and a vertical opening of at least 14 inches.
Sleek design
Packed with smart features
Insulating wings could be better

While aesthetics may not be the primary concern when choosing an air conditioner, the sleek design of Windmill’s unit is a pleasant surprise. This AC not only looks great but also performs exceptionally well in keeping your space cool and comfortable. It comes equipped with modern features, including Wi-Fi and smart home compatibility, making it easy to control and integrate into your connected home ecosystem. Additionally, its straightforward installation and built-in voice command capability enhance the user experience.

With an impressive 11.6 CEER rating, the Windmill air conditioner offers excellent energy efficiency while generating minimal noise during operation, ensuring a peaceful and cost-effective cooling experience.

One notable feature is its unique air circulation design, directing air upward and outward at a 45-degree angle. This is particularly beneficial if your bed is positioned near the windows, as it prevents cold air from blasting directly towards you, providing more comfortable airflow.

The Wi-Fi capability allows you to set and adjust the temperature remotely, so you can return to a perfectly comfortable space or put the unit on eco-mode when you’re away to save energy. The AC offers three cooling settings and three fan speeds, all of which can be easily controlled through the accompanying app.

In summary, the Windmill air conditioner impresses not only with its modern design and smart features but also with its excellent cooling performance, ensuring you have a cool, comfortable, and connected living space all year round.

Best Price

LG LP1419IVSM Air Conditioner

4.3 (2024 ratings) $699.00
The LG LP1419IVSM Air Conditioner is a standout option that has gained recognition for its exceptional cooling performance, efficiency, and innovative features. In this review, we'll dive deep into what makes this air conditioner a top choice for 2023.
Multiple fan speeds Smart features to control from anywhere
Best Price

LG LP1419IVSM Air Conditioner

4.3 (2024 ratings) $699.00
Multiple fan speeds
Smart features to control from anywhere

LG’s portable air conditioner proves to be a powerful and efficient appliance. Upon setting the desired temperature and fan speed, the unit quickly starts blowing ice-cold air, leaving us impressed by its rapid cooling capabilities. The automatic movement of the discharge louvers further ensures even distribution of the cooled air, maintaining a consistent temperature throughout the targeted space— an essential factor for your comfort.

With its large BTU capacity, the LP1419IVSM is particularly well-suited for large apartments or office areas that may require extra cooling capacity, especially when housing heat-generating digital equipment. This air conditioner’s ability to handle such cooling demands makes it an excellent choice for spaces with high cooling requirements.

In terms of maintenance, the LG portable air conditioner proves to be easygoing and user-friendly. Twin air filters are conveniently covered by two grills, both of which can be easily removed without the need for tools. The top grill, in particular, is well-designed and effortless to lift off, simplifying the cleaning process and ensuring the unit remains in optimal working condition.

Overall, LG’s portable air conditioner LP1419IVSM offers impressive cooling power, even temperature distribution, and hassle-free maintenance, making it a top choice for larger spaces that demand efficient cooling and comfort.

Best Price

HomeLabs HME020235N Portable Air Conditioner

4.2 (2024 ratings) $699.00
Your new hOmeLabs Portable Air Conditioner includes everything needed for the vast majority of customers. This unit works best with double-hung windows up to 48 inches wide. Attach the exhaust hose and adjustable slider unit into your window. We've also included adhesive foam window seals for an airtight fit.
A lot of cooling capacity
Washable air filter
A bit noisy

When it comes to significant cooling needs, you need a big air conditioner, and this particular appliance seems to have you covered. While we haven’t tested it yet, it boasts the capacity to cool areas as large as 600 square feet, making it a promising option for spacious rooms or apartments.

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The unit offers versatile cooling options. In Auto mode, the thermostat runs the cooling cycle automatically, but you also have the flexibility to manually adjust the settings either using the control panel or the included remote.

Moreover, this air conditioner can operate in fan-only mode or dehumidification mode. Using the fan-only mode allows you to circulate air without cooling, while the dehumidification mode helps dry out damp areas like basements or reduces the clammy feeling on rainy days.

One feature we appreciate is its LED indicator, which lights up to alert you when the washable air filter requires cleaning. This reminder ensures that the appliance operates efficiently, maintaining clean and fresh air circulation.

Regarding portability, while we haven’t personally tested its mobility, the unit comes equipped with two large recessed handles—a feature noticeably lacking in many other portable air conditioners. These handles can make a significant difference when moving a substantial 72-pound appliance, providing added convenience and ease of use.

In conclusion, this sizeable air conditioner, though untested by us, appears to be well-suited for substantial cooling needs in large spaces. Its various operating modes and LED filter alert enhance its functionality, and the inclusion of recessed handles adds practicality to its portability, making it a compelling option for efficient cooling solutions.

Best Price

Haier QPCA11YBMW Portable Air Conditioner

4.2 (2024 ratings) $699.00
This GE 3-in-1 Portable Air Conditioner cools small rooms up to 250 square feet. Built-in air conditioning, fan speeds, and dehumidifying capability provide flexible and optimal home comfort, while the auto-evaporation technology evaporates any water the portable unit collects under most room conditions, eliminating the need to drain excess water.
Sleek design
Recycles moisture to minimize emptying pan
Drip pan can be difficult to remove

If you need to cool and dehumidify a larger space, especially on humid days, the Haier portable air conditioner is a worthy consideration, despite being untested by us. Its BTU rating is impressive for its size and weight, ensuring powerful cooling performance.

What sets this unit apart is its remarkable moisture removal capability, rated at 90 pints per day, thanks to its dedicated dehumidification setting. Haier claims that, in most instances, the QPCA11YBMW evaporates the condensation into the exhaust air, eliminating the need to empty the condensate tray. However, it’s important to note that this applies to “most conditions.” We advise being prepared to empty the tray if the surrounding environment is particularly damp.

The Haier portable air conditioner appears to be a promising solution for efficiently cooling and dehumidifying larger spaces, making it a compelling option for areas prone to excess moisture. While our direct testing experience is lacking, its impressive BTU rating and moisture removal capacity make it worth considering for your cooling and dehumidifying needs.


Here are some frequently asked questions (FAQs) about the best air conditioners in 2024:

  1. What types of air conditioners are available in 2024?
    • Common types of air conditioners include window air conditioners, split-system air conditioners, portable air conditioners, and ductless mini-split systems.
  2. What features should I look for in the best air conditioner in 2024?
    • Consider features like cooling capacity (BTUs), energy efficiency (SEER rating), noise level, smart capabilities, ease of installation, and the type of filter used for air purification.
  3. What is the importance of the SEER rating in air conditioners?
    • SEER (Seasonal Energy Efficiency Ratio) measures the efficiency of an air conditioner. Higher SEER ratings indicate better energy efficiency, potentially leading to lower energy bills.
  4. How do I determine the right size of air conditioner for my room?
    • The size of the air conditioner is measured in BTUs (British Thermal Units). Consider factors such as room size, insulation, and sun exposure. A unit with too few BTUs won’t cool effectively, while one with too many may cycle on and off frequently.
  5. Can I install an air conditioner myself, or do I need a professional?
    • Window air conditioners are often suitable for DIY installation, but other types, like split-systems or mini-splits, may require professional installation. Improper installation can affect performance and efficiency.
  6. Are smart air conditioners worth it?
    • Smart air conditioners offer the convenience of remote control via smartphone apps, scheduling features, and integration with smart home systems. While they may have a higher upfront cost, the added convenience and potential energy savings can make them worthwhile.
  7. How often should I clean or replace the air filter?
    • The frequency of filter maintenance depends on usage and the type of filter. As a general guideline, it’s recommended to check and clean or replace the filter every 1 to 3 months to maintain optimal performance and indoor air quality.
  8. What is the difference between a single-zone and multi-zone mini-split system?
    • A single-zone mini-split system cools a single room or area, while a multi-zone system has multiple indoor units connected to one outdoor unit, allowing for individual climate control in different rooms.
  9. Can air conditioners be used as heaters in the winter?
    • Some air conditioners, particularly heat pumps, have a heating mode and can be used for heating in addition to cooling. However, their effectiveness in cold climates may vary.
  10. What is the average lifespan of an air conditioner?
    • The average lifespan of an air conditioner is around 15 to 20 years, but this can vary based on factors such as maintenance, usage patterns, and the quality of the unit.
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I'm Kelly Atkinson, with a passion for dissecting the world of home goods. My reviews stem from thorough testing and a love for sharing detailed insights. Each piece I write offers a glimpse into my explorative journey, aiming to guide readers to informed choices with authenticity and precision, making every review a blend of exploration and expertise.

Production Manager of The Dinner Dude Division at |

I'm Mark Zoch, a culinary expert, Production Manager at Hana Hotel Travel Company, and the proud founder of "The Dinner Dude." My journey, shaped by personal and familial health struggles, has also led me to become a renowned health coach in Houston, where I'm dedicated to transforming lives through tailored nutrition and wellness programs.

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