What are the downsides of a window air conditioner

What are the Downsides of a Window Air Conditioner?

It’s getting hot again. It was a crazy windy spring and now it seems like we just flipped right into a scorcher.

And when it gets hot, One of the first things people seek out is air conditioning.

And window air conditioners are one of the most popular choices cooling a room.

But there are a few things to think about before purchasing a window AC, some good, some not so much.

In this article we’ll start with the “not so good” of window air conditioners

What are the drawbacks of a window AC?

1. High energy consumption:

Window air conditioners use a significant amount of energy, which can lead to a higher monthly bill.

 There is no getting around it. Air conditioning is easily one of the most expensive energy users in the house.

And when you have multiple window ACs in different rooms, you can expect a significant hike in the amount of energy you will be paying for.

2. Limited cooling

Window ACs typically have a limited cooling capacity and are not as useful for large rooms or open spaces.

They are much more of a air conditioning per room solution rather than trying to cool an entire house.

And the bigger the room, The bigger the window AC that you will need to purchase.

Pairing the right air conditioner with the specific square footage of your room is the way to get the best out of a window air conditioner.

So don’t skip this part.

3. Noise

Some window air conditioners can be quite loud, which can be disruptive.

The noise that a window AC makes, makes it hard to do certain things like recording audio or video in the same room.

You have probably come across a YouTube video where somebody was filming with a window air conditioner running in the background.

So the noise of a window AC should definitely be taken in consideration when you’re looking for a cool air solution.

4. Installation

Window air conditioners need to be installed in a window.

Not every room is suited for a window air conditioner and not every window can accommodate a window air conditioner.

These are definitely things to think about when you are looking to buy.

5. Limited mobility

Once your window air conditioner is installed, it can be quite difficult to move it.

Window air conditioners are not portable air conditioners. Even though they can be moved from window to window, The time and effort it takes to do so is something that you do not want to do very often.

So they are really only useful in the room they are installed in.

6. Limited aesthetic appeal

Window air conditioners can be unsightly and may not add to the neighborhood appeal.

That’s another way of saying they can look kind of ghetto.

And depending on the neighborhood may affect the property value of a home.

7. Potential security risks

Window air conditioners can be easy to remove. Which from a burglar’s point of view can make it a good point of entry If they are looking to break in.

It’s worthwhile to install bars or extra structure that makes getting a window AC out of a window much less appealing for this reason.

Window AC Advantages

It wouldn’t be fair to tell you all the negatives about window ACs without at least giving you some of the positives.

Window ACs are actually very useful. And there is a good reason why they fly off the shelves during the summer months.


1. Affordability:

Window ACs can be a much cheaper option than installing a mini split system or central air for sure.


2. Easy to install

Window air conditioners can be very easy to install when you have a good window to put them.

But remember, window air conditioners can be quite heavy and it’s probably not an installation you want to do by yourself.

3. Single room cooling:

Window air conditioners can be used to cool a single room or area, making them a good option for small homes or apartments.

And not every situation requires air conditioning to be running through the entire house.

A window air conditioner is an excellent way to cool off a specific area when it is being used without having to cool off multiple rooms at the same time.

4. Easy maintenance

Window air conditioners Do not require just a whole lot of maintenance.

Occasionally pulling out the filter and cleaning it or replacing it according to which brand you own.

And making sure there’s no debris building up on the outside of the air conditioner is pretty much the whole enchilada.

5. Variety of sizes

You can purchase window air conditioners that work well in a small bedroom or you can get them to work in rooms as big as 10,000 sq ft.

But remember, purchasing the right window AC for your amount of square feet is key to getting the best out of a window air conditioner.


6 Different features

Some window air conditioners come with features such as remote control, programmable thermostats, and energy-saving modes.

Other features like dehumidifier mode can give you the option of simply reducing the humidity and the air instead of bringing down the temperature.

A feature that can be very useful when it’s not the heat that’s bugging you as much as the high humidity.

Another feature that can be integrated into a window air conditioner is a heat pump.

Having a window air conditioner that can also provide heat in the winter can be a very convenient solution for a small room.

Though not exactly suggested as a replacement for other types of heating, it can still be a very good option to consider.

Conclusion. What are the downsides of a window air conditioner?

Window air conditioners can be expensive, as well as noisy and offer limited cooling compared to other types of air conditioning like central air.

But there are definitely advantages to using a window air conditioner that can make up for the downsides.

One they’re cheaper, they’re easy to install, and they can be adjusted per room so that you can specifically dial in the temperature to your own comfortability.

Published by

Dennis Reed

Dennis Reed Owner and Author @ BreatheBetterAir.org