The 5 Best Portable ACs for Cars ( 2022)

Summer is coming! Are you looking for the best portable ac for cars?

It seems easy but not. If you have a wrong purchase, a portable air conditioner can become trash. 

When purchasing the best portable ac unit, we should consider the size, cooling capacity, noise levels, functions, warranty, and cost of the item.

In this post, I will review the five best portable ac for cars that can make your car cooler. 

Read to the end to know which one is for you.

Best Portable AC for Cars (Quick Comparison Chart)

I have summarized the five best portable ac for cars and trucks in the table in case you do not have much time to read my detailed review—a quick look to save your time and have the right purchase.

 Dimensions (L x W x H)VoltageNoise Level
Ontel Arctic Air Cool
2 x 20 x 1 inches N/A<40 dB
Wemordu Portable AC
5.4 x 3.7 x 7 inches 5 volts36 dB
Evapolar evaCHILL
7 x 7 x 7 inches5 volts<40 dB
HueLiv Portable Air Cooling Fan
6.1 x 5.2 x 5.2 inches12 volts<40 dB
FiveJoy 12V Portable AC
10.5 x 3.5 x 5.5 inches12 volts<50 dB

Is There A Portable Air Conditioner For A Car?

Yes, many different types of portable air conditioning units for cars exist. The first thing you’ll want to be familiar with is the different types. You will encounter electric fans, rooftop air conditioners, stand-alone ACs, handheld designs, bucket coolers, and evaporative air conditioners.

1. Electric Cooling Fans

A portable electric fan is ideal for small cars since it’s easy to move from one location to the other. It’s also cheap compared to other portable ACs. What’s more, it consumes the least amount of energy, which is ideal if you want to conserve energy. 

2. Bucket Cooler

This portable car air conditioner is bulkier than an electric fan. However, it is more capable of cooling your vehicle than a fan. It needs to fill it with water and ice and turn it on to receive a cool breeze. 

Most bucket coolers are battery charged, but they can also power through your car’s cigarette lighter. 

3. Evaporative Units

This cooler evaporates cool water, bringing down the air temperature. It does this by pulling in the stale air, moving it over a rigid cooling pad, and evaporating cool water. 

4. Rooftop Air Conditioners

These are for RV and camper installations. They can also work as window AC units since they come complete with their evaporator, compressor, and thermostat controls. Rooftop ACs are installed permanently and require refrigerant, thermostats, and temperature sensors. 

5. Wearable and Handheld Designs

These are ACs that you can take with you outside or place on the dash or armrest for instant cooling. Personal air coolers are usually cordless and powered by rechargeable batteries for a wire-free experience. 

What Is The Best Portable Air Conditioner for Car?

My suggestions list for the best portable car air conditioner include Ontel Arctic, Wemordu, Evapolar evaCHILL, HueLive Car Fan, and FiveJoy.

1. Ontel Arctic Air Freedom Personal Air Conditioner

best portable air cooler

Why I Chose Ontel Arctic?

This cooling device will bring down the air temperature around me by 20 degrees. I like that it is horseshoe-shaped and the same size as a pair of headphones. As such, it is easy to wear it around the neck. Thanks to its lightweight design, I can drive without feeling like something is weighing on my neck. 

Ontel Arctic Air Freedom requires charging using a USB cable, and I get up to six hours of cool air on a full charge. I love that It also has three fan speeds for my convenience. Also, it is wire-free so that no wires will disrupt my drive. 

The downside of this product is sometimes I feel it’s a bit noisy if I need to focus on something.

I highly recommend Ontel Arctic Air Freedom for personal usage in cars.

Buy it below:

Best Portable AC for Car

Ontel Arctic Air Freedom Portable Personal Air Cooler

2. Wemordu Portable Car AC Unit.

This is the best portable car air conditioner.

Wemordu Personal AC- the Best Portable AC for Car

Why I Chose Wemordu Personal AC?

One of the best portable ac for car is the Wemordu model. It has four functions for such a small unit. This model will not only cool the air around me, but I can also place it on the dash or armrest and use it as a fan. 

Furthermore,I love that it humidifies the air and prevents my skin from drying out. Lastly, this AC will also emit light that I can use instead of turning on the cabin lights. Rated at only 3 watts, this model is very energy efficient, and it does not use a refrigerant; that’s why it uses little energy.

Recommend Wemordu for using in cars. Buy it below:

Wemordu- best portable AC for car

Wemordu Portable Air Conditioner

Pros

  • Only two buttons
  • Energy-efficient 
  • Ultra-quiet operation 
  • Three adjustable speeds
  • High-speed fan 

Cons

  • Holds charge for two hours at the highest setting 

3. Evapolar evaCHILL EV-500 Portable AC Unit For Car

Evapolar is one of the best portable air conditioners for a car that I like the most.

Evapolar cooler

Why I Chose Evapolar evaCHILL?

This personal cooler is also ideal for a single person. Thanks to its small size, I can place it just about anywhere in my car for comfortably cool air. Evapolar plugs into a dash-mounted socket/cigarette lighter so it’s easy to use.

With the humidifying function, I am able to use it in dry climates where dry air can leave my skin crackly. It has a tank where I fill it with water, and I control it with a single button. It’s also not loud so that it will not distract my drive. 

Recommend Evapolar evaCHILL for using in cars. Buy it below:

Evapolar evaCHILL EV Portable AC for car

Evapolar evaCHILL EV Portable AC

Pros

  • Controllable air flaps on the front grille
  • Spout prevents spillages 
  • Handle for portability

Cons

  • No oscillation

4. HueLiv 12v Alectric Fan For Car

huelive portable car fan

Why I Chose HueLive Car Fan?

This car fan provides excellent and powerful vehicle ventilation. Combined with its ultra-quiet operation, it’s every driver’s dream come true on a hot summer day. HueLiv will keep I and my passengers cool since it oscillates 360-degrees to deliver cool air throughout the cabin. 

HueLiv can also fit any car since it mounts using a strong suction cup. It’s easy to install firmly on the window or windshield. Plus, it connects to a 12V DC cigarette lighter socket. I’ll never worry about battery life. 

Recommend HueLive Car Fan for using in cars. Buy it below:

HueLiv 12V, 6 is the best Portable Air Cooling Fan for car.

HueLiv 12V, 6″ Portable Air Cooling Fan

Pros

  • Connects through cigarette plug 
  • Durable plastic design
  • Oscillates 360 degrees 

Cons

  • Not best for temperature above 100°F

5. FiveJoy 360 Electric Fan Degree 12V

Electric cooling fan for cars

Why I Chose FiveJoy?

The two fan heads on this device are powerful enough to cool a medium-size car. These fans are efficient such that they provide instant cooling the moment I turn them on. While they can move lots of air, FiveJoy only uses 6.5 watts of power.

In addition, they use a cigarette lighter plug, meaning they can easily connect to any vehicle. I like that they are relatively easy to place on the dashboard or armrest since 3M adhesive stickers keep the base securely in place. Lastly, two-speed settings ensure that I can keep the car cool in summer, and I can also use it to defrost the windshield in winter.

This is a good portable ac unit for car.

Check its price below:

FiveJoy 360 Degree Rotatable Car Fan is the best portable ac for car.

FiveJoy 360 Degree Rotatable Car Fan

Pros

  • Dual heads rotate 360 degrees
  • Energy efficient 
  • Space-saving design
  • Easy, one-button operation 

Cons

  • Loud at 50 dB noise level

The Best Portable Car Air Conditioner: Important Things To Know

Size 

Portable air conditioners for cars are tiny, and that’s why you’ll want to pick a unit that can work well with the car you need cooling. For example, an electric fan can work well in a small passenger car, but it may not suit a large fifth-wheel camper. 

Still, it’s better to go for a small unit that your car can accommodate without taking up extra room. 

Cooling Capacity 

This feature describes how powerful the unit is. On regular air conditioners, this feature is measured in BTUs. This feature is important in RV ACs because you want something to cool the entire RV. The higher the BTU rating, the higher the cooling capacity of an air conditioner.

However, because of their small size, a portable AC’s cooling capacity is determined by the area it can cool in ideal conditions. 

Noise Levels

Portable air conditioners can be noisy. Nonetheless, the best AC’s have a noise control feature so that the noise coming from the model is background noise. A noise-free unit can guarantee a comfortable trip if you’re concerned about noise. The most comfortable noise level is less than 50 dB for personal ACs and less than 56 dB for RV ACs. This noise is going to be a background hum that’s way below normal conversation. 

Functions

Except for providing you with cool air, portable ACs also have extra functions. Some can remove bad odors, while others can restart automatically as soon as the temperature reading goes up. Some humidify the air, so your skin does not dry out. 

To this end, it’s best to look at the features you need in a unit before choosing a brand. Remember that more features attract a higher price tag than a basic fan.

Cost

It’s essential to look at the value of a portable air conditioner. Note that a typical one-room air conditioner will cost more than a small car AC. Hence, the bigger the area you need to cool, the higher the price tag. 

Secondly, the number of features you need will determine the price tag of any particular car air conditioner. Lastly, the brand name also plays a part in how much you pay for a unit, and renowned brands have highly-priced units, unlike less-renowned models. 

Warranty 

Most portable car ACs will have a 30-day return period and a warranty of up to two years. The vital aspect of a guarantee is that some manufacturers require registering the AC once you buy it. Otherwise, you may not claim a refund or repair without registering. Others, on the other hand, require the original receipt. Hence, it’s best to go through the warranty requirements after buying the product. 

Sum up

In summary, the best portable AC for a vehicle will cool your car and provide extra features to keep you comfortable. You can find various types, including individual units to large models for large motorhomes. This list offers the best attributes for each model to help you make an easy choice. 

Are you ready to pick a portable air conditioner for your car? These brands are the only ones you’ll need. 

You may concern: Ventilated Seats vs. Cooled Seats: Which Is More Worthy?

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