Best Portable Air Conditioner and Heater Combo in 2022

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Portable air conditioners are a popular option for cooling individual rooms by themselves or as a supplement to central air conditioning that isn’t quite doing the job. Now that some portables use heat pump technology, cooling and heating in the same package may be a very attractive choice for you. 

This Portable Air Conditioner and Heater Combo Guide provides you with overviews on the top portable air conditioners that also heat. Special information pertaining especially to portables follows, then full reviews on each of our top models with the best features, pros and cons, plus more. 

Overviews of the Best Portable Air Conditioner/Heater Combos

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Features
SereneLife SLACHT108

#1 SereneLife SLACHT108

  • 10,000 BTU Cooling Capacity (6,000 BTU DOE)
  • 9,000 BTU Heating Capacity
  • For Areas up to 250 Square Feet
  • Cools, Heats, Dries, Fan-only
  • Warranty: 1 Year Hassle Free

#2 Whynter Elite ARC-122DHP Dual Hose

  • 12,000 BTU Cooling Capacity (7000 BTU DOE)
  • 10,000 BTU Heating Capacity
  • For Areas up to 300 Square Feet
  • Uses Ecofriendly R-32 Refrigerant
  • Warranty: 3 Years Compressor, 1 Year on Unit 

#3 BLACK+DECKER 12,000 BTU Remote 

  • 12,000 BTU Cooling Capacity (6,000 BTU DOE)
  • 10,000 BTU Heating Capacity
  • For Areas 200 to 250 Square Feet
  • Remote, Timer, other popular features
  • Warranty: 1 Year Parts/Labor, 5 Years Compressor 

#4 TURBRO Greenland 14,000 BTU

  • 14,000 BTU Cooling Capacity (10,000 BTU DOE)
  • 13,300 BTU Heating Capacity
  • For Areas 400 to 450 Square Feet
  • UV-C Light Kills Germs
  • Warranty: 1 Year 

#5 Whynter ARC-14SH Dual Hose

  • 14,000 BTU Cooling Capacity (9,000 BTU DOE)
  • 13,000 BTU Heating Capacity
  • For Areas up to 500 Square Feet
  • R-32 Refrigerant
  • Warranty: 3 Years Compressor, 1 Year on Unit 

#6 DELLA 15,000 BTU WiFi Enabled 

  • 15,000 BTU Cooling Capacity (10,000 BTU DOE)
  • 12,000 BTU Heating Capacity
  • For Areas up to 450 Square Feet
  • R-32 Refrigerant
  • Warranty: 1 Year 

Note: The difference between ASHRAE and DOE/SACC BTU capacity is explained below – and it is very important to understand when sizing a portable air conditioner. 

Important Information Concerning Portable Air Conditioner Efficiency

ASHRAE vs SACC 

When purchasing any air conditioning system, the question everyone wants to know is, “How large an area or room will it cool?” The answer to this question is mainly determined by how many BTU’s it will produce per hour. 

Since 1959, air conditioners of all kinds have been tested and given a BTU rating by an organization called the American Society of Heating, Refrigerating and Air-Conditioning Engineers (ASHRAE). But portables are different in a very important way: the entire unit is inside the room you are trying to cool. Other types, including central air, window air conditioners and mini split systems, all have their compressor and condenser located outside the building, which makes them more efficient than portables. 

Because of this major difference, the Department of Energy (DOE) established a new rating system for portables in 2017 called the SACC or Seasonally Adjusted Cooling Capacity. It takes into account a wide variety of environmental factors that will affect how a portable functions. In general, the DOE rating for a portable air conditioner will be 33% to 50% less than the ASHRAE rating. Many manufacturers list both ratings in their advertising and labeling, but not all do.

Buyer Beware! And even if they list both, sometimes the coverage in square feet is listed based on the proven-untrustworthy ASHRAE ratings! So, the danger is that you’ll buy a portable air conditioner that won’t cool or heat the space you have.

That’s why we list square feet coverage using SACC ratings. 

Buyers need to be aware of the fact that the actual cooling output of a portable is not the ASHRAE listed number, but the DOE number – often referred to as SACC. You may see both SACC and DOE used together, like this: SACC/DOE. 

Once you know the DOE BTU/hour that a particular portable will produce, you can then refer to a table or chart to determine how large an area or room it will cool. 

Below is a chart to assist in this process. All conversions are approximate and vary from model to model. 

ASHRAE to SACC/DOE Comparison for Portable A/C 

ASHRAE (BTU)SACC/DOE (BTU)Room Size
8,0004,000 – 6,000125 – 250 Sq Ft
8,5005,000 – 6,000150 – 250 Sq Ft
10,0006,000 – 7,000250 – 300 Sq Ft
11,0007,000 – 8,000300 – 350 Sq Ft
12,0007,000 – 10,000300 – 450 Sq Ft
13,0008,000 – 10,000350 – 450 Sq Ft
13,5009,000 – 10,000400 – 450 Sq Ft
14,0009,000 – 12,000400 – 550 Sq Ft
15,00010,000 – 12,000450 – 550 Sq Ft

Single Hose and Dual Hose Portables 

When considering a portable air conditioner, you should also know that almost all are of the single hose design, some are dual hose models. Briefly, here is the difference. When a single hose portable is installed, it will have one hose (exhaust) that goes to the outside of your building – usually through a window by means of a window “kit” that is included with your machine. 

When the unit is in its cooling operation mode, the air in your room is drawn into the machine, where it is cooled and blown back out to bring down the room temperature. At the same time, some room air is drawn into the machine to cool down the compressor and condenser coils. This hot air is blown out through the exhaust hose. Here is where some of the portable’s efficiency is lost. 

When the room air is blown out through the exhaust hose, it has to be replaced by some other air. Air from other rooms in your house may come in through a doorway; warm air from outside the building may come in through cracks around windows or doors, or from other places as well. This air is being “sucked” into the room to replace what was blown out, and will result in the single hose portable air conditioner being less efficient than a dual hose model. 

What about the dual hose design? It draws air from outside through one hose (intake) to cool the compressor and condenser, then blows it back out through the other hose (exhaust). The result is that the dual hose portable will have a higher efficiency than the single hose type. 

For example, two models in this review have a (worthless, in our opinion) ASHRAE rating of 12,000 BTU. The single hose model has a DOE rating of 6,000 BTU while the dual hose model has a DOE rating of 7,000 BTU. That’s not a huge difference, but it means that the dual hose model will cool a room of approximately 100 more square feet than the other. 

So, just be aware of these factors when looking to purchase  a portable A/C unit and take them into consideration along with the many other features of the different models as listed below. 

Tip for Wildfire Areas: If fires are common where you live, we recommend a dual hose Whynter portable air conditioner because they pull in little or no air from outside – unlike single hose models that will suck in the air, smoke, odor and all.

*You might also consider a dual hose unit for heating if you have a wood-burning boiler or stove outside and the exhaust sometimes blows toward the house. 

Portable Air Conditioner and Heater Combo Reviews

Here are full reviews of the best portable ACs that include heat. They could be called portable heat pumps.  

#1 SereneLife SLACHT108 Portable AC Cool/Heat Unit 

Best Compact Model 

SereneLife SLACHT108

Features:

  • 4 Operational Modes: Cooling, Heating, Dehumidifier & Fan
  • Automatic Swing Mode
  • Touch Button Control Panel with Digital LED Display of Time, Temperature & Fan Speed
  • Removable and Washable Filter Screen
  • Dehumidifier Removes up to 6 pints per hour 

Pros:

  • Control by digital touch button panel or handy remote
  • Easily rolls on 4 caster wheels 

Cons:

  • A little noisy for a smaller unit 

Why We Like It: Producing a multitude of appliances and other items used in and around the home, SereneLife has become popular with online buyers. This SereneLife 10K/6K BTU unit is one of the highest rated portable air conditioners with heat – and it comes at a great price! It’s smaller size doesn’t mean that it doesn’t put out plenty of cool air.

In heat mode, it will provide pleasing warmth to any average sized room. It is small and stylish, and will be a great addition for that room that you need more precision control of the environment. This series is also available in a larger, 12,000 BTU size.  

#2 Whynter Elite ARC-122DHP 12,000 BTU Dual Hose Portable Air Conditioner and Heater 

Best 12K Model

Features:

  • Dual Hose Operation
  • Four Operational Modes: Cool, Dehumidify, Heat, and Fan
  • Dehumidifying Capacity: 82 pints per day
  • Upper and Lower Drain Ports with Auto Pump for continuous (cooling and dehumidifying) operation
  • 3 Speed Fan with 2-way Directional Air Louvers 

Pros:

  • Quiet Operation – less than 52 dBA
  • Digital and Remote Control
  • 24 Hour Programmable Timer
  • Long Extendable Exhaust Hose (up to 60”) 

Cons:

  • Unit does not have a defrost cycle to maintain performance in cold weather 

Why We Like It: Whynter makes some of the very best portable air conditioners on the market. This 12K/7K unit has been designed to handle high humidity situations with the addition of an Auto Pump to remove excess water.

With a 10’ lift capability, the drain hose can be easily directed out the same window where the intake and exhaust hoses are located. With almost 80% of verified purchasers giving this unit a 4 or 5 star rating over almost 7 years, it easily makes our list as one of the best. 

#3 BLACK+DECKER 12,000 BTU Portable Air Conditioner with Heat and Remote Control 

Most Favorable Ratings 

Features:

  • 4 Energy Efficient Modes: Cool, Heat, Dehumidify, Fan Only
  • 3 Fan Levels and Auto-Fan Mode
  • 24 Hour on/off Timer and Sleep Mode
  • Easy to use LCD Remote Control 

Pros:

  • Great size for dorms, apartments, cabins, campers, offices, bedrooms, garages, or living rooms
  • Self-Evaporating operation requires no manual draining when in cool mode
  • 4 Caster Wheels make it easy to roll to another room 

Cons:

  • Instruction manual could be more user friendly
  • A bit noisy on high fan speed 

Why We Like It: Black and Decker is an American manufacturer of many kinds of tools as well as home appliances, and was originally established in 1910.

Their continued development of newer products has brought us this 12K BTU portable A/C with heat. Weighing in at 68 lbs., this unit moves more easily than some larger models. It is an ideal unit to use in spaces that cannot support traditional window-mounted AC units. It has over 33,000 ratings on Amazon with an average of 4.4 out of 5. If a larger size is needed, this model is also produced in a 14K BTU size. One of the best warranties on portables. 

#4 TURBRO Greenland 14,000 BTU Portable Air Conditioner and Heater 

Best New Single Hose Model 

Features:

  • Four Operational Modes: Cool, Dehumidify, Heat, and Fan
  • Dehumidifying Capacity: 81 pints per day
  • 3 Speed Fan with Auto-Swing Air Vent
  • UV-C Light Function to remove harmful pollutants and airborne particles
  • Upgraded Backlit LCD Remote
  • Auto Mode, Timer Function and Sleep Mode to maximize efficiency 

Pros:

  • Turbo Function for fast cooling when needed
  • Easy Setup with well-written instructions
  • Easy to understand control panel 

Cons:

  • Single Hose operation may not be as efficient as dual hose models 

Why We Like It: Since 2013, Turbo’s mission has been to help people make their homes more comfortable. This 14000 BTU unit is a relatively new addition to the wide selection of portables on the market, but it has received very high marks for a single hose PAC with heat. The auto function that adjusts the operating mode to maintain a constant room temperature of 68-73 degrees is a great feature when mornings are cool and afternoons get hot. 

#5 Whynter ARC-14SH 14,000 BTU Dual Hose Portable Air Conditioner & Heater 

Best Dual Hose Model 

Features:

  • Dual Hose Operation
  • Auto Drain Function fully exhausts all condensate automatically in cooling and dehumidifying modes
  • Four Operational Nodes: Air Conditioner, Fan, Dehumidifier and Heat
  • 3 Fan Speeds
  • 24-hour Programmable Timer 

Pros:

  • Digital and Remote Control
  • Dehumidifying Capacity: 71 pints / day
  • Storage Cover Bag Included 

Cons:

  • At 80 lbs., it’s expensive to ship to manufacturer if a problem arises 

Why We Like It: The Whynter company manufactures quality products from portable air conditioners for on-the-spot cooling to stylish coolers to keep your favorite beverages chilled. They offer modern and convenient solutions for the day-to-day experience of life.

This Whynter 14K/9K unit comes loaded with features too many to list. The dual hose design greatly improves the cooling efficiency over more common single hose units. Many satisfied purchasers report that the auto drain feature works well even in Florida humidity. The unit is also quiet enough to easily be able to carry on conversations & watch television in the room with it running. 

#6 DELLA 15,000 BTU WiFi Enabled Portable Air Conditioner & Heater 

Best 15K with WiFi 

Features:

  • 4 Operational Modes: Cool, Dry, Heat, Fan
  • 3 Fan Speeds
  • 24 Hour Timer
  • Auto Swing Louvers for increased air flow coverage
  • Control with TouchPad, LCD Remote or DELLA Mobile App 

Pros:

  • High-tech Anti-Virus Filter for improved air quality
  • Multinational Plug makes this model ideal for international use
  • Dehumidifying Mode can remove 67 pints of water per day 

Cons:

  • Heavier than most units at 88.2 pounds 

Why We Like It: In addition to kitchen appliances, warmers, chillers and other bar and buffet supplies, DELLA also makes three types of air conditioners.

This 15K BTU portable with heat is the largest model in our list. It is here as an example of what a portable air conditioner can do – mainly, to provide both cool and warm air to a large room. With the ability to be controlled via mobile app, it can have your living space cool and comfortable when you arrive at home. This model is also available in 12,500 BTU with heat.

Portable Air Conditioner and Heater FAQ’s

Do portable air conditioner and heat combos have an electric heat strip?

No. These are not electric heaters. They are heat pumps, which operate the same way whole-house heat pumps or mini split heat pumps work. They use the traditional air conditioning technology with an internal refrigerant to either move heat out of your home (cooling) or into your home (heating). They heat by reversing the refrigeration direction and process.

Do portable air conditioners with heat have special power requirements?

No. They all operate on standard, 110V residential voltage and plug into a standard wall receptacle. They can do this because electricity is only used to run the compressor – it isn’t used to produce electric resistance heat, like a space heater. Using a standard 110/120V outlet is a large part of what makes them “portable” – they can be unplugged and rolled into another room.

Why is there no SACC/DOE rating for the heating capacity of most portables?

Portables are not tested for this rating for heating -yet. If the heat pump idea catches on in portable units, then a new rating for heating will like be developed. The BTU heating output is usually only slightly less than the cooling output, as you can see in the overviews of these models.

Is there any way a portable air conditioner can be made more efficient after it is installed?

When a portable is running, the exhaust hose sometimes puts off a significant amount of heat through radiation. If the unit can be placed closer to the window, the hose need not be extended as far, thus, lessening the exposed surface in the room. Also, some owners insulate the outside of the exhaust hose with various types of insulation. This could result in an unsightly installation, and might also affect the ease of portability, but it would probably prevent a certain amount of heat from being radiated into the room you are cooling.

What is the largest heating BTU available in portable air conditioners?

The largest produced is a 13,000 BTU model – but that’s ASHRAE rating, and you won’t get that much heat from it – probably more like 8,000 BTUs after heat loss and the influx of cold air is considered.

What are the smallest portable air conditioners in terms of heat output? 

The SereneLife model above is rated for 9,000 BTU, so that won’t overwhelm any room with heat. There’s one smaller – a Whynter ARC Series dual hose unit listed at 8,200 BTU. 

At what temperature is a portable heat pump not effective?

They will begin to lose effectiveness when the air temperature outside drops into the 40s and below.

The temperature inside the room should probably be above 50F if you want the portable AC/heater to do you much good. 

What’s the difference between R-32 and R-410A refrigerant?

They’re both quite efficient, though R-32 has a slight edge. Neither damages ozone in the atmosphere. 

Global warming potential is where the real difference lies. R-410A (R410A) has a higher GWP of 2,088. R-32 (R32) has a GWP of just 675, so it is a greener refrigerant. 

Written by

Rene has worked 10 years in the HVAC field and now is the Senior Comfort Specialist for PICKHVAC. He holds an HVAC associate degree from Lone Star College and EPA & R-410A Certifications.

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