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What You Need To Know About How Much Time You Can Continuously Run A Portable AC

What You Need To Know About How Much Time You Can Continuously Run A Portable AC

If you live somewhere with consistently humid weather, the icy blast of air you get when turning on your portable air conditioner will be enough to convince you to keep it running constantly. But how long can a portable air conditioner truly run without harming something? Here is what we discovered after doing a lot of investigation.

A portable air conditioner may run constantly day and night. The lifetime of a portable AC’s operation, however, may depend on a few important elements. This could include everything from the AC’s size and capacity to how much electricity it uses, especially if it has a modest inverter.

Additionally, it is crucial to be aware that different manufacturers create portable air conditioners with various characteristics. Learn more about some of the elements that contribute to the durability of portable air conditioners by reading on. We’ll also cover fault finding and AC maintenance to increase their lifespan.

Should I Use My Portable AC Continuously Throughout The Day?

According to the design guidelines for portable air conditioners, it is intended to shut off as soon as the cooling environment has reached a consistent temperature.

This means that there is absolutely no harm in leaving a portable air conditioner on. But just like any other electrical device, it would always operate more effectively with regular breaks.

Things To Think About Before Running Your Portable AC All Day

While experts advise against running a portable AC continually, you need be aware of a few things. Here are few instances.

The Amount Of Energy Used
This appliance’s consumption is impacted by the entire amount of energy used, particularly when it comes to the electrical bill that accumulates at the end of the month.

You may have observed that when the temperature in the room equalizes, air conditioners frequently trip. Experts claim that the energy used at that specific time exceeds the whole energy used during the entire working period without it tripping.

As a result, if it tends to trip off more frequently as a result of being on for extended durations, your electricity cost may go up.

Because of this, some individuals would turn off their air conditioners anytime they detect the temperature in the room has dropped before turning it back on a few hours later.

Additionally, you might wish to conserve energy as much as you can if you care about the environment. Be aware that some portable AC models may use refrigerants that harm the ozone layer by emitting CFCs or chlorofluorocarbons.

Room Dimensions
The portable AC would need to run longer in a larger space. Typically, portable air conditioners run for 15 to 20 minutes before stopping and starting up again after a few minutes.

What You Need To Know About How Much Time You Can Continuously Run A Portable AC

This is regarded as the AC’s “rest” period. If the air conditioner runs nonstop, there may be overheating, which damages the vehicle.

It’s crucial to check that the AC’s capacity matches the size of the room. The air conditioner would function properly if this were taken into account.

The capacity of the portable AC should match the size of the room it cools if you choose to leave it on for the most of the day.

Duration Of Maintenance
A portable air conditioner is no different from other electrical appliances in that it needs routine maintenance. The most visible portions of the appliance must be periodically maintained.

One of these components is the filter, which becomes more clogged with dust the more exposed it is.

This implies that if you use your portable air conditioner for prolonged durations, it will require routine maintenance, especially if you live somewhere with a lot of dust.

Make sure to have your portable AC’s filters cleaned at least once a week if you use it more frequently than the average person.

You must keep an eye out for the following indications to determine when a portable air conditioner needs repair.

  1. Too Much Noise
    You should check your portable AC as soon as you notice a difference in the regular sound it makes. This can mean that a component is damaged, not working properly, or that the AC’s main component has to be replaced. In order to prevent more damage, it should be serviced immediately.
  2. Strange Smell
    Your portable air conditioner may begin to emit a foul smell for a variety of reasons. After some time, the build-up of dust and water droplets on the AC duct usually decomposes. Additionally, they permit the development of germs and fungi, which produces an unpleasant odor. A dead insect or animal lodged in the AC could possibly be the culprit. For instance, an insect that is imprisoned and cannot escape finally perishes. It begins to decay and smell after a while. Whatever the situation, it all emphasizes the need for you to set aside time to fully clean and inspect your equipment.
  3. Water Buildup In Unusual Places
    It might be advisable to have your AC checked by experts if you discover that it is pouring from odd places. No matter the environment, the AC is made to remain dry. When some pieces begin to leak, there could be a deeper problem.

What Happens If Your Portable Air Conditioner Isn’t Drained?

What You Need To Know About How Much Time You Can Continuously Run A Portable AC

If your particular model of portable AC employs hot air for evaporation and condensation, there are additional consequences for improper draining.

You must make sure to routinely empty the bucket or container if your AC uses the bucket system or has a channel set up for the transfer of leftover water.

Without adequate drainage, the AC’s residual water output could fill the bucket to capacity and then begin to overflow. Spillage could result from this. The growth of microbes could then present health risks for you and your family.

How To Extend The Life Of Your Portable AC

Plan Where To Place Your Portable Air Conditioner
The location of a portable air conditioner affects its potential to operate more affordably.

For ventilation and drainage purposes, portable air conditioners should be placed next to a window and an electrical outlet.

Keep your exhaust pipe short and straight to prevent lint buildup. If at all possible, keep the portable air conditioner away from areas with a lot of sunlight.

Make Sure There Isn’t A Heat Source In The Space
Avoid using several electrical gadgets in the same area to keep your portable air conditioner functioning at its optimum. The heat produced by other electrical equipment makes it difficult for air conditioners to quickly cool off a room.

Turn it off if you don’t need it! Additionally, low-humidity locations are great for storing your portable air conditioner. More condensation will be produced by the AC unit as the relative humidity in the area and around it increases.

Maintain Room Cleanliness
One of the most common reasons for a portable AC’s life expectancy to shorten is an unclean environment. The effectiveness of the air conditioning system is diminished when filters are blocked with dust or hair. If the filters aren’t cleaned frequently, this could result in overheating and complete damage.

Close All Windows And Doors
Shutting all windows and doors is highly encouraged when the air conditioner is running. This will keep the temperature in the space at a pleasant level.

What You Need To Know About How Much Time You Can Continuously Run A Portable AC

The cooling effect is diminished and the air conditioner is put under more stress when the windows are left open. The air conditioner may sustain damage more quickly than usual if it is under stress.

It’s better to keep the door closed so that the temperature is dispersed evenly. Though occasionally leaving it open might enable full circulation.


One option to keep cold air circulating in your home on warm afternoons is to turn on your portable air conditioner.

However, keep in mind that leaving your appliance running continuously has drawbacks as well. Examples include an increase in your electricity cost or the necessity of routine maintenance.

Never forget to drain your portable AC on a regular basis to prevent spills and a foul smell brought on by bacterial buildup. Maintenance is a word you should always keep in mind since how well you take care of your equipment can greatly affect how long it lasts.

What You Need To Know About How Much Time You Can Continuously Run A Portable AC

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Written by HVAC Contributor

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