No matter how you plan to stay cool, you want an efficient machine that’s going to be reliable for years to come. That’s where a wall AC unit comes into play. Better than cooling fans and longer-lasting than portable units, wall ACs are the ultimate machine to cool your small room or large space, and they come in a variety of different strengths.
Here are GearHungry’s top picks for wall AC units to chill out without blowing up your savings account.
- Best for Small Spaces: Frigidaire FFRA0511R1E 5, 000 BTU 115V Mini-Compact Wall AC Unit
- Best Wall Unit: Pioneer Air Conditioner WYS012G-19 Wall AC Unit
- Best for Large Spaces: LG 12,000 BTU 115V Window-Mounted Wall AC Unit
- Easy Clean Filter: MIDEA 10,000 BTU EasyCool Wall AC Unit
- Best for Heating and Cooling: Koldfront WTC8001W 8,000 BTU Wall AC Unit With 3500 BTU Heater
- Most Features: LG LT1016CER 10,000 BTU 115V Remote Control Wall AC Unit
- Most Powerful: Keystone 12,000 BTU 115V Wall AC Unit
The Best Wall AC Unit Review
This mini compact air conditioning solution from Frigidaire is ideal for smaller spaces and can deliver quick cooling power. Fitted with two cooling fans that can be set to two different speeds, it’s perfect for areas no bigger than 150 square feet. Featuring quiet running operation, it won’t disturb you while you study or sleep. Its low-power startup mode saves you money in the long run and is overall very energy efficient.
This unit is also easy to clean and maintain and comes fitted with washable mesh filters which easily slide out for on-the-spot maintenance. The reusable filters reduce unwanted bacteria, nasty odors, and minimizes airborne particles. Additionally fitted with automatic restart technology, this Frigidaire AC unit will resume operating at its previous setting whenever power is restored. It’s quick and easy to install and requires a 115V electrical outlet plus a window with a minimum height of 13 inches. You may also be interested in some of these amazing ventless air conditioners, so check them out.
Compact air conditioning unit emits 5000 BTU
Two cooling speeds, two fan speeds plus two-way air direction
Highly energy efficient with an 11.1 EER rating and effortless operation
Low power start-up and quiet running operation
Removable and washable mesh filters for a healthier environment
- Weight41 pounds
From Pioneer, this unit is your all-in-one solution to heating woes whether you’re concern is heating, de-humidification, air-conditioning or ventilation. This super-efficient system is packed with the latest technology, simple to use, and ideal for domestic as well as light commercial applications. With attractive and contemporary flat panel detailing, it looks sleek and stylish and won’t spoil the aesthetics of your room. It’s fitted with automatic swing air discharge louvers as well as a dimmable LED display, all of which make this the ideal unit for home use.
This ductless indoor air conditioning system also includes a multi-speed fan motor as well as whisper-quiet operation, which makes it a fantastic choice for a bedroom or study. With a night mode function that automatically adjusts the temperature setting according to changing body temperature levels throughout the night plus an auto-restart function, there are plenty of reliable and advanced features in this system. If you want even more tech, here’s our list of the best smart air conditioners.
Mini-split pump highly efficient ductless unit for indoor use
Cooling capacity up to 12000 BTU’s
Heating capacity up to 8000 BTU’s
Super energy efficient rating of 17.5 EER
Supplied with LCD screen remote control for smooth operation
Permanent washable air filters
- BrandPIONEER Air Conditioner
- Weight19 pounds
LG is a trusted brand in the electronics space. So, it’s no surprise that they have made one of the best AC units on the market. The LG LW1216ER Air Conditioner is designed for large rooms (up to 550 square feet) and has an impressive cooling power of 12,000BTU. Unlike some other AC units on the market, this product doesn’t provide any heating power, so don’t buy it if you need an all-season solution.
Using the front and side vents, this unit offers four-way air direction, which allows it to cool down a room much quicker. Just mount it on an appropriate window and control the temperature using the remote control. Users will also appreciate the Saver function, which makes the most of the 12.1 energy efficiency ratio. Plus, it has a 24-hour on/off timer and LG’s patented anti-corrosion coating that lowers the need for frequent services. Be sure to also browse our list of the best-selling small air conditioners.
12,000BTU cooling power
Cools up to 550 square feet
Four-way air direction
24 hour on/off timer
12.1 energy efficiency ratio
- Weight81 pounds
If you’re looking for an all-in-one machine, you’ve got to consider the MIDEA MAW10R1BWT. This brand is known in the air conditioner space for their innovative designs and solutions, and that’s certainly the case in this model’s 3-in-1 functionality. Depending on what you need most in your home, you can use it as a dehumidifier, air conditioner, or just a plain old fan. This allows you to find the perfect solution, save money, and get the environment just right in your home.
It offers 10,000 BTU of cooling power, making it suitable for rooms of up to 450 square feet. You also need to have a window that’s big enough to accommodate the machine (all of the necessary mounting accessories are included). One thing that users love about the MIDEA MAW10R1BWT is the intuitive remote control that lets you control the temperature and air quality in the room using different modes including sleep, 24hr timer, fast cool, and ECO energy saver.
10,000 BTU cooling power
3-in-1 (air conditioner, dehumidifier, fan-only)
Rooms of up to 450 sq feet
Remote control & LED display
Sleep, fast cool, & ECO save modes
- Weight63.8 pounds
The first rule of thumb: These units may say they only cover a certain area, like Koldfront WTC 8,000 BTUs model, which says it covers up to 350 square feet, but 8,000 BTUs can cover a lot of ground. You just have to be smart not to leave too many heat-drawing elements in your room, like chargers and other constantly plugged-in devices.
Koldfront offers a median price while giving you three fan speeds, four operation modes, and an eight-button remote control that allows you to control the numerous features. One nifty bit about this unit is the additional feature of a heater. It provides up to 3,500 BTUs of heat, which isn’t going to do much in any normal-sized room, but it’s great for providing supplemental heat.
8,500 BTUs cooling
3,500 BTUs heating
- Weight66.6 pounds
LG produces some of the best appliances and general-use electronics in the world, and they don’t stop at smart TVs and routers. This LG unit offers nearly 10K BTUs, so you can turn your studio apartment into an igloo in just a few hours. The unit is small enough to install in the space between your windowsill and your baseboards. Not everyone wants their unit sitting high above the television or being difficult to access, and this unit is perfect for that demographic.
Keep in mind that the unit is small, but definitely not lightweight. This bad boy weighs a staggering 80 pounds and will require a helping hand to get installed. Once it’s installed, you’ll get three different cooling options, three fan speeds, and a six-button remote control, so you can leave it by the door and flick it on before you even kick your shoes off after work. You can also use the built-in timer features to cool the room down before you even walk in the door.
10,000 BTUs cooling
Energy Star rated
3 cooling modes
- Weight80 pounds
Who even knew Keystone was still pushing out products? This wall unit AC comes with everything you could want: 12K BTUs for a deep chill, three cooling speeds, three fan options, and the coolest feature of all — a temperature-sensing LCD remote control. Yes — your remote control sends information to your AC and uses that to cool down your room.
This unit weighs nearly 80 pounds, so you’ll want an extra pair of hands when you’re installing it. The good thing is it’s a compact model, so you’ll be able to install it under windowsills and in other optimal points of the home — it doesn’t just have to be high up on the wall. You’ll have to purchase your wall sleeve separately.
12,000 BTUs cooling
Follow Me fan setting
Temperature-sensing remote control
Compact form factor
Energy Star rated
- Weight80 pounds
Why Trust Us
I'm from the south, where A/C exists in all places, businesses, homes, and more. After spending most of my life there, I didn't realize A/C wasn't as common in most places. Crazy, I know—we didn't travel much. Texas gets hot, and without a chance to cool down indoors, you'll end up with heat exhaustion, heatstroke, or you might just keel over without air conditioning. Now, I live in the Pacific Northwest, where central A/C is a mythical beast that makes occasional appearances and wall A/C units are a prized gem. While most of the year, our climate is temperate enough that survival is possible without the need for icy blasts of cold air, summers do get hot here, and a recent heatwave sent temperatures in Portland to record highs of 115. You can bet wall A/C units were king.
Who This is For
This guide is for anyone looking to cool their home or office with an air conditioning unit. Central A/C can get expensive and isn't necessary for many parts of the country, but on the hottest of summer days, it can be an absolute godsend to have those icy blasts of air that feel like they came straight out of Elsa's hands themselves. While you don't need to build an ice castle to stay cool, installing a wall unit can feel like quite the task, but we assure you it's well worth it.
How We Picked
When selecting air conditioners, we looked at a variety of budgets and spaces. We ensured there is a unit on this list for all spaces from studio apartments to larger offices. For extra fun, we looked at features including fan settings, dehumidifying options, and remote controls. Some options go above and beyond with heating and cooling units for year-round comfort or as a backup in case of crazy weather. Multiple mounting options are available as well to suit a variety of needs.
Features To Look For In The Best Wall AC Units
If you’re thinking of investing in a wall-mounted AC unit, we recommend you consider the following criteria:
Room Size - Air conditioners are measured in terms of their BTU, which represents British thermal units. You should ensure that the unit you buy is powerful enough to cool the room space where it’s going to be fitted. There are plenty of BTU calculators you can refer to online if you’re to sure. Roughly speaking a unit with a 5000 BTU will cool a room of up to 150 square feet whereas or a 300 square feet space, 7000 BTU’s is preferable. Besides the cooling performance, also consider the model’s maximum airflow as a combination of these two performance indicators will enhance the overall cooling performance.
Efficient Rating - The more efficient your unit is, the higher the EER will be. The average energy-efficient rating of most wall AC units will be around 10.3 with the best units have an EER of up to 10.7.
Operating Modes - It pays to invest in a unit that has customizable settings and modes that can be matched to your preferences. You can find units with adjustable fan speeds as well as built-in dehumidifiers which will additionally pull moisture out of the air to help keep your home comfortable and mold-free.
If you plan on using your AC unit overnight, it’s also an excellent idea to choose something with a quiet operation so that it won’t cause unnecessary disruption as well as a sleep mode setting that is conveniently pre-programmed to gradually raise the temperature to a comfortable level while you sleep and when you wake.
Timer - It can be expensive to run multiple electrical appliances in your home, so if you select an AC unit with a range of pre-programmable timer settings, you can choose the one that’s best of you and your budget without worrying about forgetting to switch it off. The automatic switch-off mode will save on electricity costs.
Digital Temperature Control - Many units feature not just a remote control so that you can adjust from wherever you happen to be positioned but also a digital temperate control panel that displays essential information about temperature setting and how much energy your unit is consuming.
Accessible Easy Clean Filters - Most air conditioners do come with filters that will require cleaning and changing. Look out for filters that are easy to access and clean and which can be quickly detached and wiped down rather than require professional or expensive ongoing service and maintenance.
Benefits Of Wall AC Units
Below we’ve listed out some of the key reasons why we think you will appreciate a through the wall air conditioner.
All-year-round comfort, not just for the hot summer months. Even if you see a spike in temperature in the winter, you can simply switch your AC unit on. If you had a window-mounted version, the chances are that you would already have stored it away.
Plenty of units offer flexible heating solutions and can provide cooling as well as heating functions. This can save you money in the long run and also reduce the space that would be taken up by two separate units.
Wall AC units are typically less obtrusive than their window-mounted counterparts and safer too, and they don’t require an open window to operate. That means you can still enjoy the views from your windows and have the flexibility to open up your home and enjoy fresh air whenever you feel like it.
They’re also far more energy-efficient than central air conditioning systems and more effective than window air conditioners because they have form a together seal around the unit itself, presently cold air from escaping. In addition, they’re also relatively inexpensive to run with the average wall-mounted air conditioner costing less than $30 per month to run even if it’s being used for 8 hours a day.