Shopping for a Small Window Air Conditioner? Read This!


Shopping for a small window air conditioner? Look for multiple features that can help you save energy and money.

If you want to save energy with a small window air conditioner, then you need to consider several factors.

Overall, window units are more efficient than they were in past decades, but you want to make sure the system is the right one for your home.

Before buying a window air conditioner, consider the size of the space you want to cool. You don’t want a unit that is too small to service your room.

First, check the BTU rating on the unit to make sure it will work for your room. BTU stands for British thermal unit, which is a measure of the heat content of fuels or energy sources.

Basically, this rating represents how much heat is required to raise the temperature of one pound of liquid water by 1 degree Fahrenheit.

Measure the square feet of your room to decide what BTU rating you need for your small window air conditioner. Here’s a guide:

  • 5,000-7,000 BTUs: Rooms up to 150 square feet
  • 8,000-9,000 BTUs: 150-250 square feet
  • 10,000 BTUs: 250-350 square feet
  • 12,000 BTUs: 350-450 square feet
  • 14,000 BTUs: 450-550 square feet

If your room is too big for a small window air conditioning unit, consider a split air conditioning system. It’s a ductless system and costs significantly less than a conventional central air conditioning system.

Next, check the window air conditioner unit’s Energy Efficiency Ratio rating. The higher the Energy Efficiency Ratio rating is, the less it will cost you to operate the system.

To find the Energy Efficiency Ratio, divide the air conditioner unit’s BTU rating by its wattage. Small window air conditioner units typically have ratings between 8 and 12. Generally, you don’t want anything below 10. 

Other features on a window unit can affect energy efficiency. Overall, you want a unit with digital temperature control, variable fan speeds and sleep settings that turn on and off, depending on your sleep pattern. Those will conserve power and will make your unit more energy efficient. 

Skip to [35:58] for the full segment on the Today’s Homeowner Podcast.

Also in this episode:


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Simple Solutions

Quick and Easy Grout Cleaner — Plenty of specialty products on the market are specifically made for cleaning dirty, grungy tile grout. But you might just have something in your home right now that works just as well: toilet bowl cleaner.

That’s right — the same squeeze bottle of cleanser used to clean toilets does an excellent job of cleaning tile grout. Just squirt a bead of liquid toilet bowl cleaner along the grout joint, wait a few minutes and then wipe off with a scouring sponge. 

Wall Protector When prying off baseboard molding, it’s often necessary to pry against the wall. However, if you’re not careful, it’s very easy for the pry bar to dent or bust through the drywall.

Prevent this by placing a 1-by-4, 1-by-6 or even a 2-by-4 between the pry bar and wall. And be sure to cut the board about 24 inches long so it spans two studs.

The board will not only protect the wall, but it’ll also act as a fulcrum, making it easier to pry off the molding. 

For more information, watch: DIY Jig to Mark Baseboard Moldings for Cutting


Other Products and Links Mentioned

  • Quikrete Stucco Repair Sealant (This is an affiliate link. If you purchase this product, we will earn a small commission at no additional cost to you.)

Further Reading


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