A hot bedroom is the worst. Nobody really likes to sweat when sleeping. The easiest way to improve your sleeping in the summer is to get an air conditioner for the bedroom. And, of course, you would prefer to get the best AC for the bedroom, right?
Not every air conditioner is a good match for a bedroom. Selecting the best bedroom air conditioner should start with a few things in mind. Namely, you should focus on:
- Noise levels. Obviously, you would like for your air conditioner to be as quiet as possible. Your goal here is to get the quietest bedroom air conditioner (below 55 dB; mini splits can run at below 40 dB). We look into the decibel levels of the best aircon for the bedroom in the review section below.
- Adequate size. If you get a smaller than needed bedroom AC unit, you’re going to wake up sweating quite often. On the other hand, an oversized AC unit can short-cycle, leaving your bedroom lukewarm and humid. We are going to look at how many BTU air conditioner you need for a bedroom. On average, you would need an 8,000 BTU to 12,000 BTU for most bedrooms. Hint: It’s better to go with a bigger 12,000 BTU unit and run it on Low or Medium speed. These settings have considerably lower noise levels, allowing for much better sleep quality.
- Energy efficiency (EER and SEER ratings). If you want as low cooling bills as possible, you should invest in an energy efficient bedroom air conditioner. A difference between low-efficiency and high-efficiency AC units can make a $100+ difference every season.
- Installation difficulty. You don’t want to call an HVAC company to install a bedroom air conditioner. Most homeowners prefer ductless room air conditioners they can install themselves.
When keeping the best bedroom air conditioner, you should of course be aware of all these specs.
Based on these specs, LearnMetrics recommends the 3 best bedroom air conditioners you can buy in 2022. This list includes 1 air conditioner recommendation for every type of air conditioner used in modern bedrooms. You can check the whole list, complete with spec-by-spec analysis and reviews, further on.
First of all, however, we need to address the most important question – the one you should start with when choosing an AC unit for the bedroom.
It’s this one:
Which Type Of Air Conditioner Is Best For Bedroom? (3 Types)
Nobody really wants to install additional ductwork into the bedroom just for an AC, and you really don’t have to. More than 90% of air conditioners that are installed in the bedroom are ductless room air conditioning units.
There are 3 types of air conditioner we find in bedrooms. These include:
- Smaller mini split air conditioners for bedroom. These are below 15,000 BTU units that require no ductwork, have the highest energy efficiency (20+ SEER rating), the lowest noise levels (even below 40 dB) but are more expensive and you have to have some technical skills if you want to install them yourself.
- Portable air conditioners. These simple-to-setup portable AC units are the most popular choice. Everybody can install them but they tend to be louder and less energy efficient.
- Window air conditioners. These units are installed on the bedroom window sill. They are quite easy to install, have a good energy efficiency but they stir the window which is not ideal.
As you can see, all types of bedroom air conditioners have their pros and cons.
Here’s what is a general preference as far as cooling a bedroom is concerned:
Experts Recommend Split System Units For Bedrooms
HVAC experts predominantly recommend mini splits for the bedroom. If you check the specs, it’s very easy to see why this is a smart move. Mini splits have by far the highest energy efficiency (and thereby the lowest running costs) and are by far the quietest type of air conditioner (which is quite useful for bedrooms).
Most homeowners are concerned about the higher upfront cost (mini splits easily cost more than $1,000) and about the installation process. Of course, every HVAC expert will tell you that the upfront cost is quickly paid back by the higher energy efficiency. You can also install these units yourself with some technical skills and a helpful manual (or even a YouTube video).
Of course, these mini split AC units are split system air conditioners. That means they have the indoor unit (air handler) and the outdoor unit.
Because the loudest part of every air conditioner – the compressor – is located in the outdoor unit, the indoor air handler is very quiet. If you compare mini splits to portable or window AC units, the mini splits can have more than 10 dB lower indoor noise levels. That’s quite a difference.
Despite these advantages mini splits offer, however, the most popular choice of an air conditioner for bedroom are portable AC units:
Portable Air Conditioners For Bedroom Are The Most Popular Choice By Homeowners
Homeowners value the comfort of setting a less expensive AC unit themselves more than energy efficiency. That is only natural; if you have a hot bedroom in the middle of the summer, you just want to buy a $500 portable air conditioner, plug it in immediately, and enjoy the cooling effect.
That’s why portable air conditioners are the most sought-after type of air conditioner. Everybody wants to know which is the best portable AC unit for the bedroom.
The way you go about picking the best portable air conditioner for your bedroom is to look for:
- A quiet portable AC unit. For the bedroom, you will require a unit that generates less than 55 dB. An average portable AC unit generates about 55-60 dB. In the table below you will find the best bedroom portable AC unit that generates less than 50 dB.
- Higher than 10 EER rating. This will reduce the running costs.
- About 8,000-14,000 BTU capacity.
All portable air conditioners are very easy to install in the bedroom. Of course, you will also need to use a window seal for portable AC units. This is the hardest part of the installation (it’s still very easy compared to a mini split installation).
An interesting option is a window AC unit for the bedroom. It’s a less popular choice as mini split or portable AC unit, but it’s quite easy to install, has considerable energy efficiency, and it has a longer 10+ year lifespan.
The reason why some homeowners don’t look into using a window AC for a bedroom is that it reduces the amount of natural light in your bedroom. These units are installed on a window sill and, inevitably, they will block some of the light coming into the bedroom via that window.
Let’s check the best portable AC unit for bedroom, as well as the best bedroom mini split and window unit, and compare the specs that we want from every bedroom air conditioner.
Here is the full list of the best AC units for bedroom, complete with specs (key spec are the noise levels), and followed by reviews of the best models:
3 Best Air Conditioners For Bedroom (Quietest)
1. Best Bedroom Mini Split Air Conditioner: MRCOOL DIY-12-HP-115B25
If you want the absolute best AC unit for the bedroom, you go with the ductless mini split AC option. The best mini split currently on the market is the MRCOOL DIY-12-HP-115B25. With the incredibly low noise levels, this is considered the best choice of an air conditioner for the bedroom overall.
MRCOOL DIY-12-HP-115B25 has a 12,000 BTU cooling capacity with a theoretical coverage of up to 600 sq ft (20 BTU per sq ft DOE’s rule of thumb). It’s a perfect choice for 100-300 sq ft bedrooms because you can run it on Low or Medium setting and enjoy efficient and, above all, silent cooling.
This mini split has record low noise levels, making it perfect for the bedroom. At the High setting, the MRCOOL DIY-12-HP-115B25 generates merely 38 dB noise levels. That’s to the lowest noise level of all bedroom air conditioners (perfect for sleeping). On top of that, if you run it on Medium or Low speed, the noise levels drop even further to 31.5 dB and 23.5 dB levels, respectively.
Needless to say, all mini splits are incredible cost savers. MRCOOL DIY-12-HP-115B25 is especially brilliant at reducing costs; it has a 20+ SEER rating (22 SEER, to be exact) and is the most energy-efficient bedroom air conditioner.
Of course, the upfront cost of all mini splits is higher than other types of bedroom air conditioners. You’re looking at about $1,400 cost (that is, of course, negligible given how much you save on electricity).
There is also the installation requirement. Outdoor and indoor unit have to be installed, and a small hole in the bedroom wall has to be drilled for refrigeration lines. Luckily, the MRCOOL DIY-12-HP-115B25 comes with the best DIY kit and is considered the easiest mini split to install yourself.
All in all, if you want the absolute best air conditioner for your bedroom, you go with a mini split. MRCOOL DIY-12-HP-115B25 is the best mini split air conditioner you can use to cool a bedroom:
2. Best Portable AC For Bedroom: Frigidaire FHPH132AB1
Portable AC units are the go-to choice for bedrooms for many homeowners. If you want the best portable air conditioner for bedroom, you need a silent unit (below 55 dB) with at least 10+ EER rating and 8,000+ BTU capacity. Meeting and even surpassing all these marks is the Frigidaire FHPH132AB1. This is a reliable Frigidaire unit that you just position in the bedroom and press ‘On’ for immediate cooling effect.
Frigidaire FHPH132AB1 has a 12,000 BTU cooling capacity. That means that it is adequately sized for most bedrooms (small, standard, and even bigger master bedrooms).
The bane of portable air conditioners are the high noise levels. It’s not uncommon to see a portable AC unit that generates more than 60 dB. Here is where the Frigidaire FHPH132AB1 shows its quality. It is one of the very few portable AC units with below 50 dB top noise levels (up to 49 dB, to be exact). That makes it a perfect choice for a bedroom if you want to sleep with a running air conditioner.
Another disadvantage of portable AC units Frigidaire FHPH132AB1 successfully negates is lower energy efficiency. An average portable AC unit has an 8.5 EER rating. The Frigidaire unit, however, has a higher 10.3 EER rating. This will reduce the running costs of cooling the bedroom compared to standard portable AC units.
Everybody loves the installation. You basically place the unit in your bedroom (it does have a 77 lbs weight, you will need strong hands), vent the hose out of your bedroom window (and use the window seal kit to cover the opening), and press ‘On’. That’s it; you can set it up in less than 10 minutes.
All in all, portable AC units are comfortable and easy to set up in the bedroom. If you want the best bedroom portable air conditioner, you need to look no further than the Frigidaire FHPH132AB1:
3. Best Window AC For Bedroom: TOSOT Tranquility
Window air conditioners don’t get enough love as bedroom air conditioners. They have quite a quiet operation, are about 20% more energy efficient than portable AC units, and are easy to install. If you want the best quiet bedroom air conditioner, the TOSOT Tranquility is an excellent choice.
TOSOT Tranquility is an 8,000 BTU window air conditioner. With this cooling capacity, it’s adequately sized for smaller and standard bedrooms (up to about 250 sq ft).
The name ‘Tranquility’ derives from the low noise levels. Window AC units can have above 55 dB noise levels. For the bedroom, you will need as quiet AC unit as possible. The TOSOT Tranquility generates record-low noise levels for window AC units; it produces from 42 dB to 49 dB noise levels.
These units also have a longer lifespan than portable AC units. On average, a bedroom window AC unit will last for about 10 years. TOSOT is recognized as a durable brand and you will likely have fewer issues and a longer lifespan with this brand.
Efficiency-wise, the TOSOT Tranquility has a superb 12.0 EER rating. That means it is in the highest percentage of the most energy efficient window air conditioners for the bedroom. It even has an Energy Star rating.
All window AC units, including the TOSOT unit, are fairly easy to install on a bedroom window sill. They do reduce the natural sunlight coming in from that window.
All in all, window AC units are quite an underappreciated type of AC unit for the bedroom. With superb specs, TOSOT Tranquility is not only the best window air conditioner for the bedroom but one of the best bedroom AC units in general:
This has been an overview of which air conditioners are best for bedrooms. What you have to keep in mind are low noise levels, energy efficiency, and installation difficulty. Hopefully, now you have a better understanding of which specs and specific models to check when picking an air conditioner for your bedroom.