Camping air conditioners

What makes camping so enjoyable is having the opportunity to disconnect for a bit. To live free from the cares and concerns of the modern world. However, it might be prudent to bring along a few modern appliances so that downtime can be enjoyed, not endured. If you are camping in a tent during the hotter months of the year, for instance, it might be difficult to get a good night’s sleep without air conditioning. Many tents have a built-in air conditioning port to facilitate cooling. Still, there are a few things you need to consider if you want to use a portable air conditioner while camping.

Shop this article: Danby Window Air ConditionerMidea Window air conditioner and SereneLife Portable Air Conditioner Unit.

How do you provide power to a portable air conditioner?

You need a generator with enough power or a campsite with an electric hookup. If you have no other power source and are desperate for a brief period of relief, a battery-powered air conditioner might be an option.

Which type of air conditioner should I get?

You have two options when it comes to purchasing an air conditioner for a tent: a window air conditioner or a portable air conditioner.

  • Window air conditioner: If you choose a window air conditioner, you need a tent with a built-in air conditioner port. This port functions like the window in your home, allowing the cool air to come in while dispersing the hot air outside. A window air conditioner also needs a small stand to keep the unit off of the ground. One of the downsides of a window air conditioner is that it is easily visible and offers no protection against theft.
  • Portable air conditioner: These large upright units are on wheels for easy transport. Unlike the window air conditioner, these models have a tube for the exhaust which is routable through any opening in your tent. They offer greater convenience and are placeable inside your tent, but they take up a chunk of space. This could be a deal-breaker if your tent is small.

A larger tent requires more cooling power

Cooling an indoor space that is 10 feet by 15 feet requires an air conditioner with at least 5,000 Btu. The larger your tent, the more Btu the air conditioner will need to have. A tent doesn’t offer the same insulation as a home, so it might diminish the cooling effects. On the upside, temperatures outdoors often drop considerably at night, so the need for cooling isn’t as great after dark.

Other considerations

  • Weight and size: A portable air conditioner must be light enough for you to carry – you may not be able to wheel it over rough terrain – and small enough to fit in your vehicle for transport.
  • Noise level: If you are using a portable air conditioner for a better night’s sleep, make sure you choose one that operates quietly.

  • Price: Portable air conditioners may have features you don’t need that drive up the price. For instance, you can get a basic 5,000-Btu window air conditioner for as low as $150. But, a portable unit with an abundance of features may cost close to $500 for roughly the same amount of cooling. Do not spend money on features you won’t be using.

How do I stay cool in a tent without a portable air conditioner?

In warmer months, you can use several simple strategies to help combat the heat that builds up inside a tent. While these options do not match the cooling power of an air conditioner, they are effective in less extreme temperatures.

  • Pitch your tent in a shaded area.
  • Use a tarp to create a shaded area.
  • Open all vents to create airflow.
  • Stay hydrated.
  • Use a camping fan.
  • Consider an evaporative cooler.

Best portable air conditioners for camping

best Danby Window Air Conditioner

Danby Window Air Conditioner

The washable air filter in this unit makes it a good option for camping. Like the LG, it is a 5,000-Btu unit with mechanical controls and offers the user two speeds.

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best MIDEA Window air conditioner

Midea Window Air Conditioner

This model features seven temperature settings and four cooling settings. It also has two air directors (horizontal and vertical), so you can quickly cool down your tent.

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best SereneLife Portable Air Conditioner Unit

SereneLife Portable Air Conditioner Unit

This budget option features a cool mode, a dehumidifier mode, a fan mode, and a sleep mode for individuals who prefer a portable air conditioner. It comes with a remote and has enough cooling power to work on a tent up to 215 square feet.

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best BLACK+DECKER Portable Air Conditioner

Black and Decker Portable Air Conditioner

The essential feature of this higher-priced portable air conditioner is its weight. At only 26 pounds, it is easier to move about your campsite. Additionally, this model features a timer, which can be helpful if it gets too cold in the middle of the night.

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