Best Energy Efficient Air Conditioners – (2021) Review

With the rising temperature in the summers, you might seek an effective cooling solution without causing a huge spike in your utility bill. If that’s so, an energy-efficient air conditioner is all you need.

Today, modern technology has allowed AC manufacturers to develop energy-efficient units that help reduce your overall energy costs. These units are not only energy-efficient but also promise great cooling capability.

If you are looking for an energy-efficient air conditioner, then this guide is for you.

Comparison of the Best Energy Efficient ACs

IMAGEPRODUCT
  • 5000 btu of cooling power
  • 8-way directional air louvers
  • Removable and washable air filter
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  • 6000 btu of cooling power
  • Includes 4 functions (cool, energy save, fan and dehumidify)
  • Full-function remote control with LED display
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  • Best for the Money
  • 8000 btu of cooling power
  • Takes up 350 square feet in area
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  • Best Energy Efficient Window Air Conditioner
  • Features advanced DC inverter technology
  • 8000 btu of cooling power
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  • Best Energy Efficient Portable Air Conditioner
  • Cools up to 500 square feet of space
  • Features an extendable exhaust hose
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What is an Energy Efficient Air Conditioner?

People have been using air conditioners for a while now. Although those units offered a reliable cooling solution, their power consumption was quite high. Consequently, users had to pay high utility bills to enjoy a cool environment. However, modern cooling solutions like energy-efficient air conditioners have now made efficient and effective cooling possible.

An energy-efficient air conditioner is the one that consumes minimum energy to power its cooling operations. Such units consume low power; hence, they are more budget-friendly. They also don’t compromise on the cooling performance despite the reduced power intake.

Amana AMAP050BW

What to Look For When Buying an Energy Efficient Air Conditioner

Buying an energy-efficient cooling solution can be tricky as there are so many products available to choose from. However, certain factors that you should definitely consider are:

Size of Living Space

It is important to consider the size of your living space before buying an air conditioner. A large room would require a larger and powerful unit for effective cooling, while a smaller unit would be enough for a compact room. Most air conditioners come with a pre-defined measurement of a living space that they can cool effectively. Make sure to buy a unit that promises to effectively cool an area that corresponds to the size of your living area. 

Cooling Capacity

Every air conditioner has a predetermined cooling capacity. Manufacturers develop cooling solutions having a variety of cooling capacities to meet the needs of various living spaces. Some are designed for large spaces, while others can only cool a small area. Therefore, do consider the cooling capacity of the unit you wish to buy for your living space.

EER Rating

The EER rating of a unit determines its energy efficiency during operation. The higher the EER rating, the higher would be the energy savings. If you want to buy an economic unit, purchasing an air conditioner with a higher EER rating is the way forward.

Review of the Best Energy Efficient ACs

Finding an energy-efficient air conditioner is not an easy task. With so many different products available, you can easily get confused about the model to opt for.

To help you find a reliable cooling solution, we have listed some of the best energy-efficient air conditioners that promise minimal power consumption while offering effective cooling.

Best Overall:
Amana AMAP050BW

AMANA 5,000 BTU 115V Window-Mounted Air Conditioner with Mechanical Controls, White

PROS

  • Effectively cools a large room of 150 sq ft
  • A powerful unit that offers 5000 BTUs of cooling capacity
  • Easy maintenance with removable and washable air filters
  • Comes with mechanical rotary controls with two fan speeds
  • Includes 8-way directional air louvers to direct air effectively

CONS

  • Noise output is a bit high
  • Some users reported defects after a while of use

What Recent Buyers Report

The majority of reviews for this air conditioner are positive. Users love its user-friendly design that blows cool air and quickly lowers the room temperature. They also admire how easy it is to maintain its removable air filters. Plus, it offers multiple tweakable options for the desired cooling operation.

Why it Stands Out to Us

The Amana air conditioner is one of the best models you can find that feature a window-mounted installation. It is a powerful unit that promises an effective operation with a cooling capacity of 5000 BTUs. The manufacturer claims that it can easily cool a large living space of up to 150sq ft.

Moreover, the unit includes mechanical rotary controls that allow you to adjust its fan speeds. You can either set it to 'low' or 'high' for the desired results. The air conditioner also promises improved airflow with its eight-way directional air louvers for even air distribution. Also, it promises easy maintenance with its washable and removable air filters.

Bottom Line

To conclude, the Amana air conditioner is a perfect pick for anyone looking for a reliable cooling solution. It offers a powerful operation that lowers your room temperature quickly and effectively. Besides, it promises easy maintenance for convenient usage.

Runner-up:
Haier ESAQ406T

Haier ESAQ406T Serenity Series 6, 000 BTU 115V Window Air Conditioner with Ultra Quiet Sound Package

PROS

  • Energy Star-rated model with 12.2 EER rating
  • Offers 6000 BTUs of powerful cooling operation
  • Includes remote control with LED display for convenience
  • Features a 24-hour timer for scheduling operations effectively
  • Comes with four different functions: fan, dehumidify, cool, and energy save

CONS

  • Not capable of cooling a large room effectively
  • Vent openings are not adjustable and point upwards

What Recent Buyers Report

Buyers admire the silent operation of this compact air conditioner. They like its overall design that offers maximum comfort and convenience with its multiple functions. Users also love the way it operates as it consumes less energy while cooling the room quickly in no time.

Why it Stands Out to Us

This is an Energy Star-rated model offered by Haier. It features an energy-efficient cooling operation with a high EER rating of 12.2. It not only promises effective cooling but also utilizes a minimal amount of energy. This powerful air conditioner offers 6000 BTUs of cooling operation that can easily cool large living space.

In addition, this model includes four different functions that offer multiple operational capabilities. The great thing about this unit is the user convenience it offers with its remote control. You can easily control your unit using the remote or schedule a timer for its operations.

Bottom Line

If you are looking for an all-in-one air conditioner, then look no further. Haier offers a reliable cooling solution with this air conditioner that promises versatility and maximum user convenience. Besides, it is ideal for those looking for a cost-effective cooling system.

Best for the Money:
Dandy DAC080BGUWDB

Danby Air Conditioner, 8000 BTU, White

PROS

  • 4-way air direction quickly cools your living space
  • Energy-efficient design that is effective in hot climates
  • Three different adjustable fan speeds offer more versatility
  • Comes with electronic controls and remote for convenient use
  • Features 8000 BTUs of cooling capacity to easily cool a large 300 sq ft room

CONS

  • No warranty is available

What Recent Buyers Report

Users love the cooling operation of this air conditioner. They believe that it offers an effective cooling solution during summers. They found this unit to be user-friendly as it offers tweakable options and easy control with its remote. Also, the buyers love the versatility it provides with its adjustable fan speeds.

Why it Stands Out to Us

The Dandy air conditioner promises a permanent cooling solution to keep the heat at bay during summers. It features a high cooling capacity of 8000 BTUs that is enough to cool a large living space of up to 300 square feet. The model also promotes versatility with its adjustable fan speeds that promise a perfect cooling operation.

Besides, it offers a four-way airflow that quickly cools your room. It also has an electronic control panel and remote control for convenient usage. Besides, the energy efficiency of this model keeps your power consumption bills down.

Bottom Line

This is an energy-efficient air conditioner that features high cooling capacity and a versatile design for year-round operation. It’s also a great buy for those looking for a unit that is easy to use and offers quick cooling.

Best Energy Efficient Window Air Conditioner:
Midea U Inverter MAW08V1QWT

Midea 8,000 BTU U-Shaped Smart Inverter Window Air Conditioner–Cools up to 350 Sq. Ft., Ultra Quiet with Open Window Flexibility, Works with Alexa/Google Assistant, 35% Energy Savings, Remote Control

PROS

  • Noise output during operation is as low as 42dBa
  • Promises easy and robust installation for effective cooling
  • Uses DC Inverter Technology for energy-efficient cooling operations
  • Features smart control that enables you to control it via smartphone
  • U-shaped design allows you to breathe fresh air without obstructing your view

CONS

  • Uses a flammable refrigerant
  • Foam blocks might leave some air gaps

What Recent Buyers Report

Users love the innovative design of this model. They praise its superb cooling operation that features airflow up to 20 feet. Users also love the easy and robust installation that allows it to be operable in just a few minutes. They also reported high energy efficiency using this air conditioner.

Why it Stands Out to Us

The multitude of features offered by the Midea U inverter makes it an attractive purchase. It features DC Inverter Technology that is known for its energy-efficient cooling. At the same time, it promises a significantly reduced noise output, unlike conventional models. As a result, it is perfect for use in bedrooms and other residential areas.

Moreover, this unit's U-shaped design allows fresh air into your room without obstructing much of your view. It also has smart controls that allow you to monitor operations effectively using your smartphone. Besides, the installation is quick and hassle-free.

Bottom Line

If you seek a user-friendly model, then this is a great choice. The Midea U inverter is designed for those who want a simple and easy-to-use air conditioner. Its smart controls keep you in charge of its operations while offering maximum convenience.

Best Energy Efficient Portable Air Conditioner:
Whynter ARC-14S

Whynter ARC-14S 14,000 BTU Dual Hose Portable Air Conditioner, Dehumidifier, Fan with Activated Carbon Filter in Platinum and Black plus Storage bag for Rooms up to 500 sq ft

PROS

  • Easily cools a large room of 500 sq ft
  • Dual-hose operation cools your room in no time
  • Features eco-friendly operation that uses R-32 refrigerant
  • A powerful air conditioner that offers 14000 BTUs of cooling capacity
  • Promises three operational modes including dehumidifying, fan, and AC

CONS

  • Not Energy Star-rated 

What Recent Buyers Report

Recent buyers are impressed by the effective cooling of this model. They think that it is perfect for cooling a large living space or room. Users also like its eco-friendly design that blows cool and fresh air into the room. Plus, it offers multiple functionalities, including dehumidifying, AC, and fan.

Why it Stands Out to Us

The Whynter ARC-145 is a remarkable air conditioner that offers unparalleled cooling performance. It features a whopping 14000 BTUs of cooling capacity. The unit is enough to cool a large living space up to 500 sq ft quite comfortably. It also offers three different operational modes that make it suitable to use throughout the year. 

The air conditioner delivers superb cooling with its dual hose operation. It allows you to cool your room almost instantly. Also, the unit promotes an eco-friendly operation that uses an R-32 refrigerant.

Bottom Line

The Whynter ARC-145 is the best option for anyone looking for a high-performance cooling unit. It not only cools a large living space but also offers multiple operational modes for year-round operability.

Pros and Cons of an Energy Efficient AC

Installing an energy-efficient air conditioner will almost always benefit you in the long run. However, all that goodness does come with certain drawbacks as well. In this section, we will have a look at some of the pros and cons of an energy-efficient air conditioner.

Pros

The following are some advantages of using energy-efficient cooling units.

Energy Savings

There is no doubt that energy-efficient models offer higher energy savings as compared to conventional units. They consume significantly less energy while promising effective cooling operation when used.

Increased Run Time

Given their higher energy efficiency, you can use such units for longer durations. Since they consume less energy, you don’t have to worry about paying high energy bills even if you use the unit for an extended period. 

Reduced Noise

Most energy-efficient air conditioners feature variable-speed compressors. These compressors operate at various speeds depending on the target temperature you wish to achieve. Once the desired room temperature is met, these units reduce their cooling operation, thus, decreasing noise output.

Midea U Inverter MAW08V1QWT

Cons

Here are some drawbacks of using energy-efficient air conditioners.

High Upfront Costs

Although energy-efficient models do promise a cost-effective cooling solution, they demand a high upfront cost. Most units tend to be quite expensive, and you have to pay a lot more as compared to standard models.

How Do These Compare?

Since there are so many brands and products that offer a reliable cooling solution, it becomes difficult to opt for one. The following section includes a brief comparison between different models to help you decide the right pick for yourself.

Ductless AC vs Central AC Which Is More Energy Efficient

Both ductless and central ACs are effective at cooling your living space. They consume minimal energy while maximizing the cooling effects in your living space. They are also capable of cooling a large living area, and they usually have a high cooling capacity to cater to a large room.

However, when it comes to installing these units, ductless air conditioners tend to be much cheaper as compared to central units since they don’t require ducts for operation.

Energy Efficient Central Air Conditioning vs Split System

Split systems are quite popular nowadays. They are widely used in residential areas where you don’t need to cool entire buildings. Meanwhile, central air conditioning favors the commercial sector where you require cooling in large spaces.

Both systems serve the same purpose, which is cooling. They promise an effective way of cooling large rooms and living spaces in no time. The two are also considered economical cooling solutions since they are cost-effective and tend to consume less energy to power their operations.

The difference is that central air conditioners require maintenance on an annual basis. Their ducts need to be checked every once in a while for leakages. Meanwhile, split systems require minimal maintenance and can perform effectively for a long time without regular maintenance checks.

Dandy DAC080BGUWDB

Energy Star vs Non Energy Star Air Conditioner

An energy star air conditioner is an energy-efficient model that is certified by the U.S Department of Energy. They claim to be much more energy-efficient as compared to their non-certified counterparts.

Whether you have an energy star or non-energy star model, they feature similar cooling capabilities. The former, however, promises cooling operation at the cost of minimum energy. 

Both models are similar to one another when it comes to performance. They are fully capable of cooling large living spaces quickly and effectively. However, an energy star-rated model is more energy-efficient in comparison. It consumes 10 to 50% less energy while delivering a similar cooling performance. Also, it allows you to save several hundred dollars’ worth of utility bills annually.

Ratings for Energy Efficient Air Conditioners

There are many energy-efficient air conditioners available on the market. But when it comes to picking one for yourself, it can get challenging. However, if you seek a unit that promises high energy efficiency, then do check its EER rating. The higher the rating, the more efficient the cooling operation of your unit.

What is EER in AC?

EER stands for Energy Efficiency Ratios in air conditioners and shows the amount of energy consumed to power its cooling operations in BTUs. A higher EER rating denotes higher energy efficiency. If you have a unit with a high EER rating, it will consume far less energy while offering effective cooling.

What is a Good EER Rating for an Air Conditioner?

An air conditioner having an EER rating of 12 or higher is considered a good EER rating. Although that is a pretty high rating for an AC, some models offer even higher ratings. If you own a cooling system with a 12 or higher EER rating, then you can expect a considerable drop in your power consumption.

What is CEER?

CEER stands for combined energy efficiency ratios. It’s a standard for determining the energy efficiency of window air conditioners as per the U.S Department of Energy. The ratio takes into account the power consumed while the unit is running as well as the power consumed on standby.

What is a Good CEER Rating?

A high CEER rating means that your unit will consume considerably less energy while offering effective cooling. Each unit features a unique CEER rating; however, those having a CEER rating between 9.8 and 15 are the most energy-efficient.

Haier ESAQ406T

What is a SEER Rating?

SEER stands for seasonal energy efficiency ratio. This determines the cooling output of the air conditioner over a cooling season divided by the total energy consumed. Units that feature a high SEER rating offer increased energy efficiency and a reliable cooling solution while consuming minimum energy.

What is Considered a High SEER Rating?

The SEER rating directly reflects the energy-efficient operations of your air conditioner. A higher SEER rating means that your unit consumes far less energy while delivering effective cooling. A 16 SEER rating is considered good for most air conditioners. However, some units have 18 and 20 SEER ratings as well, which is quite remarkable.

How Does an AC Get an Energy Star Certification?

The Energy Star certification of an air conditioner depends on two factors: the SEER and the EER. If the air conditioner has a SEER rating of 14.5 and an EER rating of 11 or higher, it is considered an Energy Star model.

Conclusion

Buying an energy-efficient air conditioner is not easy. You have to choose from an ocean of brands and products that promise effective cooling. However, you can always rely on cooling systems that feature high energy efficiency ratings. Our list of the best energy-efficient air conditioners offers you the perfect cooling solution while being highly cost-effective, so you can surely find a suitable model from our list!

People Also Ask

Many users are confused about the type of cooling system that would work perfectly for them. Others have a hard time determining the cost-effectiveness of various models. To help you get rid of your ambiguities, we have formulated a list of commonly asked questions. Have a look:

How Energy Efficient Are Window Air Conditioners?

The energy efficiency of your window AC depends on its CEER rating. The higher the CEER rating of your unit, the more energy-efficient it is. Window air conditioners are more power-hungry as compared to split systems. Therefore, opting for a window unit with a CEER rating between 9.8 and 15 is better.

How Much Electricity Does a Window AC Unit Use?

The power consumption of your window AC depends on several factors. However, the runtime and the size of your unit are the two major determinants that will decide its power consumption. A medium-sized unit will draw as much as 900 watts per hour of electricity. So, it can consume up to 130 to 150kWh each month.

Whynter ARC-14S

How to Tell if My Air Conditioner is Energy Efficient

The EER rating of your unit determines whether it is energy-efficient or not. If your model features an EER rating of 12 or higher, then it's highly energy-efficient. However, if it is rated below 12, then it’s not quite energy-efficient and would consume a lot of power.

Is it More Energy Efficient to Run a Portable AC Unit vs Central Air?

A portable AC would be more energy-efficient than a central air-cooling system. The latter is small and is only meant to cool compact living spaces. Meanwhile, central air units tend to cool large spaces, thus, consuming more energy.

How to Use Air Conditioner Economically

You can use your air conditioner economically using multiple techniques. First thing first, ensure that there are no leakages in your living space. Moreover, perform regular maintenance checks for effective cooling. Also, raise the desired temperature setting slightly for reduced power consumption.

How to Make AC More Efficient

You can consider buying an energy-efficient model in the first place to save more energy. However, you can still make your existing unit more efficient through proper maintenance, cleaning the filters, and fixing leakages.

What is Energy Saver Mode on an Air Conditioner?

Most cooling units feature an energy saver mode that allows the user to save more energy while using the air conditioner. This mode reduces power consumption by turning off circulation and exhaust fans automatically when the compressor is off.