Believe or not, the market with AC units is significantly saturated. But according to my experience, there are still some types of cooling machines that need some improvements. And window units belong to them. However, they are considered to be cheap and very easy devices, the manufacturers did great progress and offer now smart window air conditioners.
I must admit these machines could compete with other types of cooling devices and of course, there is a chance to win. But how to do it? Definitely by smart window air conditioners having lots of cool functions and improving our daily life.
In this article, I show you the best smart window air conditioners in an honest review. And if you’re new in this field, you will definitely appreciate our tips on how to choose the smart AC unit, what you should focus on, and what you should completely avoid. If you are on a budget and can’t buy any new machine I give you some cheap tips on how to make your dumb AC unit smart. Keep reading and join us in the twenty-first century!
Detailed Review of Smart Window Air Conditioners
From my point of view, the window air conditioners have a big potential. Unfortunately, lots of people can’t see it. The truth is the manufacturers should keep up with the progress of modern technologies. Therefore, not many units are smart.
I tried some smart and efficient cooling machines offering WiFi connection, Alexa and Google Assistant compatibility, and many other functions mostly required these days. My results are summarized in my detailed review of the smart window conditioners below. Appliances are sorted according to a number of British Thermal Units (BTU).
If you are not sure about the appropriate BTU for your room, read my article about how to choose the window air conditioner with all the details explained.
Frigidaire FGRC0844U1 8,000 BTU
In general, the Frigidaire is a very good brand proved by many years and lots of homeowners. I personally like the brand because you can rely on it. The customer service is very good as well and the machines are available at local retailers as well as in big markets.
This model is suitable for smaller or average-sized spaced up to 350 sq. ft. However, it has a WiFi connection it doesn’t offer any Alexa or Google Assistant compatibility. If you want to operate the unit via the app you just need to sync it with a smartphone. Many people ask me if it’s possible to operate the unit also without WiFi connection and smartphone. Of course, the answer is yes.
This unit is very energy efficient regarding Energy Star Certification and Energy saver mode. But what is a possible drawback for many light sleepers or more sensitive people? The average noise level while the machine is operating.
Kenmore Smart 04277127 12,000 BTU
I love this model from Kenmore because it’s compatible with Alexa. And I love it when all of my home electronics are compatible with Alexa. Also, when you sync the machine with your smartphone or tablet Kenmore offers a very elegant operation of your cooling unit via their app. Then, you can comfortably turn it on and off, change the temperature, control modes and fan speeds for comfort and energy savings, and set schedules from everywhere you are.
This model is Energy Star Certified with a brilliant Energy Efficiency Ratio (EER) of 12.1 and Combined Energy Efficiency Ratio (CEER) 12.0. However, the noise level is very nice and quiet and you won’t struggle with any interruptions even if the unit will be installed in a frequently used room of your home. It’s suitable for a floor space of up to 550 sq. ft.
LG LW1517IVSM 14,000 BTU
Thanks to Dual Inverter Compressor the operation is extremely quiet. Are you a light sleeper? You will be amazed by only 44dB (like a very quiet whispering of two people sitting next to each other). The second good thing manager by the compressor is up to 25% more energy savings. And it’s worth it, isn’t it? I think it is for a floor space max 800 sq. ft.
We are talking about smart window air conditioners and this model belongs to them very well. It offers WiFi connection and syncing with a smartphone or tablet. You can change the settings while being or not being at home via the app. Or you can operate it by using Alexa and Google Assistant and your voice.
Emerson Quiet Kool Smart EARC15RSE1 15,000 BTU
From my humble point of view, this model from Emerson is overlooked and it’s not fair. This is a great unit with a brilliant price-performance ratio and able to cool 700 sq. ft.
The first thing I have to point out is the dehumidification. The level of removing moisture from your home is very high. If you struggle with a damp home this definitely helps you a lot. But keep in mind it’s crucial not to turn on and off the unit very often. It’s better to run the unit for more than 30 minutes. It allows the unit to start the process of dehumidification.
This model offers a WiFi connection and it’s possible to change settings, turn it on or off, or set the temperature via the app from home, work, everywhere. Also, it works perfectly with Alexa and Google Assistant and you can enjoy voice control.
LG LW2217IVSM 22,000 BTU
The brand LG built into their smart units a Dual Inverter Compressor and it was a very good idea. The model provides up to 40% more energy savings compared to standard Energy Star requirements. The compressor is also the reason why this smart window air conditioner brings such a quiet operation (only 44dB for sleep mode). It makes from this model a very energy and noise efficient machine suitable for 1,300 sq. ft.
If you sync your AC unit with a smartphone or tablet via a WiFi connection you will be able to change all the settings remotely simply by using their app. For your higher comfort and keeping up with modern technologies, LG added compatibility with Alexa and Google Assistant. If you’re used to using a voice control you won’t be disappointed.
For those who love to own only eco-friendly appliances, I have good news. The brand LG used refrigerant R32 having a lower global warming potential.
Ultimate Buying Guide for Smart Window AC Units
Before you start shopping for a new unit you should be one hundred percent sure about the cooling capacity you need. The capacity is fully dependent on the size of a room you want to use for installation. You should know the manufacturers usually define the cooling capacity in British Thermal Units (also known as BTU).
How to find cooling capacity for your home? Firstly, choose a room where the smart AC unit or a regular AC machine will be installed. Then, measure the floor space. It means to find the width and length of a room and multiply those two numbers. The number you get in square footage is crucial to define the capacity in BTU. Find the measurement of your floor space in a table below and you will find the appropriate BTU. But don’t forget to involve my PRO TIPS under the table.
|ROOM SIZE (IN SQUARE FOOTAGE)||COOLING CAPACITY (IN BTU)||ROOM SIZE (IN SQUARE FOOTAGE)||COOLING CAPACITY (IN BTU)|
|150 sq. ft.||5,000 BTU||700 sq. ft.||14,000 BTU|
|250 sq. ft.||6,000 BTU||1,000 sq. ft.||18,000 BTU|
|300 sq. ft.||7,000 BTU||1,200 sq. ft.||21,000 BTU|
|350 sq. ft.||8,000 BTU||1,400 sq. ft.||23,000 BTU|
|400 sq. ft.||9,000 BTU||1,600 sq. ft.||25,000 BTU|
|450 sq. ft.||10,000 BTU||1,900 sq. ft.||28,000 BTU|
|550 sq. ft.||12,000 BTU||2,700 sq. ft.||36,000 BTU|
According to my experience, you shouldn’t rely only on the BTU dependent on a measurement of your room. I strongly recommend to also involve some of my PRO TIPS:
- Units installed in a kitchen should increase their capacity by 4,000 BTU. The reason is heat-accumulating during normal activities in this space.
- Machines installed in a room where more than two people live should increase the capacity by 600-800 BTU for each other person.
- Installation of an AC unit in a well-shaded room helps you to reduce the capacity by 10 percent (well-shaded means when a tree is standing in front of the window etc.).
- Installation of an air conditioner in a room exposed to the sun for a big part of the day increases the BTU by 10-15 percent.
- When you’re wondering about cooling more than one room and there is no door between them don’t forget to add their floor spaces to define the BTU.
Why do I need to know the appropriate cooling capacity? It’s a good question and lots of people overlook it. The cooling capacity simply measures how strong your unit is or if I say it easier how much energy you need to cool down the room. If you buy a machine with a low capacity your appliance will be too weak to cool the room however the machine will work hard all the time. And if the unit will be too strong (it means with a higher BTU than you need) it will consume too much energy to cool home.
From my point of view, WiFi connectivity is a must-have for all smart air conditioners.
One of the best advantages is the fact it’s easy to control the unit on a mobile device like a smartphone or tablet. The principle is always the same. The manufacturer of the air conditioner provides a free app. And you can remotely change the temperature, set the humidity level, fan speed, calculate your monthly costs, etc. by using your phone. But it’s not all. Keep reading!
The WiFi connects your air conditioner with a home network. And it’s perfect if you love to control all smart devices either from one place (e.g. from your smartphone) or give voice commands. You can comfortably connect the AC unit with Alexa device, Google Assistant and many others. It improves your life standard and comfort.
There are lots of functions. According to my experience, many people try not to buy cooling machines with functions to avoid a higher starting price. And I can say why not? But from my point of view, you should be wise and consider more aspects than only the price. I can make you sure you will appreciate some smart functions that will be not only to save your money.
I picked some very interesting and useful functions making your life easier and more comfortable:
- Sleep mode – Since the human body doesn’t require to be cooled so intensively at night the sleep mode belongs to energy-saving functions. And of course, this mode usually produces the lowest level of noise. How does it work? The function increases the ambient temperature by a half or max one degree every single hour until you wake up. It provides less comfort but it’s the goal to be woken up by the more unpleasant temperature. It’s not such a big shock for the body.
- Saver mode – The working process of this mode is fully dependent on the brand and model of your unit. The manufacturers designed this function differently but the goal is still the same. It helps you to save energy and it means lower monthly costs for operations of the AC unit.
- Check filter alert – If you’re like me you will significantly appreciate this function. It helps you to recognize when it’s time to wash the filter to keep the unit works properly. The dirty filter causes clogging of the cooling appliance and increasing energy consumption.
- Thermostat – The cheap AC units usually offer a manual rotary dial thermostat. The biggest drawback of this is the impossibility to set the proper temperature you desire to obtain. The only thing you can do is to set numbers from 1 to 7. What means number 5 for your unit? You have to try it. The more expensive air conditioners provide a digital thermostat allowing you to set the proper temperature according to your wishes.
- Programmable timer – This feature is perfect for those who love to come home and enjoy the cool comfort. Usually, the timer is possible to set up to 24 hours but I know also units that allow being programmed up 7 days.
Weight of Unit
Only units with a very low cooling capacity are possible to consider as light ones. The rest of the are either heavy or very heavy. Therefore, I personally recommend asking a friend or two to help you with an installation process. And it doesn’t matter what kind of machine you bought. You will always need to take it out of the boy at least. And it’s always better to avoid scratches on the floor or health issues with a back.
Along with the installation process and possible help, the weight is crucial when you’re wondering about the purchase of a window AC unit. Since the chassis and the metal compressor parts inside make the unit so heavy, it’s possible you can struggle with some issue when the unit will be installed. Try to find out some very good brackets to give good support to your unit. And if you have the skill to create your own wooden one, good for you and your wallet.
You should always focus on the energy efficiency of the air conditioner. This aspect helps you to reduce your costs and keeps the energy bill under control. But the truth is you can also face a higher initial price regarding it’s related to the higher efficiency. I strongly recommend calculating your monthly costs before purchase. Our complete guide on how to choose a window air conditioner contains the monthly cost calculation formula suitable for all types of AC units not only for smart window air conditioners.
The energy efficiency of the air conditioner is rated by the Energy Efficiency Ratio (EER) and it’s visibly labeled on the box or on webpages of the manufacturer. How is the EER defined? Very easily, you need to know a cooling capacity in BTU and its wattage. For example a unit with 10,000 BTU that consumes 1,100 watts we calculate:
(10,000 BTU / 1,100 Watts) = 9.09 EER
In general, we mainly focus on the EER. If the cooling machine has its Energy Efficiency Ratio above number 12 we can say it’s very energy efficient. But if the unit you’ve chosen offers a lower number of EER don’t be sad. It still can be a very useful appliance with a balanced price-performance ratio. But I would recommend you to calculate the monthly costs as I mentioned above.
The top models and of course the more expensive ones usually provide the Energy Star Certification. It’s a guarantee of saving lots of energy. Machines with this certification are the most energy-efficient window air conditioners.
If you were wondering what is the difference between EER and CEER, let me explain. The Combined Energy Efficiency Ratio (CEER) represents the energy used while the AC unit is operating and also the energy used while the unit is powered on (at the standby power) but not operating.
The Bottom Line
From my point of view, the modern smart window air conditioners improve your life and increase your standard. They give you other options on how to make your daily routine easier and comfortable.
The WiFi connection brings freedom as you don’t need to be home to turn on or off the unit to arrive home and feel fresh immediately without having to wait for the cool result. What is more pleasant than to remotely control your cooling device from a smartphone or a tablet?
And if you prefer to monitor your intelligent home by giving voice commands the smart AC units help you a lot because they can easily join your home network with Alexa devices or something similar. They save energy, money, and it makes them be eco-friendly.
We live in a modern period and it means to equip your house or apartment with smart appliances (if you have an old AC you can read my article about how to make AC unit smart). Don’t waste your time and join the 21st century.