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Are Portable Air Conditioners Noisy? 5 Tips to Work More Quietly (May 2024 update)

  • 10 Apr 2024

Air conditioning is a necessity for maintaining comfort in our homes, particularly during those sweltering summer months. However, the noise produced by some air conditioning units can be a significant concern for homeowners. In this comprehensive guide, we'll help you understand the noise levels of portable air conditioners, explore some of the best quiet portable air conditioner options, and provide tips on making your air conditioning silent.


Morris silent portable air conditioner


The latest must-have home appliance

Have you heard about the latest must-have home appliance? Portable air conditioners are taking the world by storm, and it's not hard to see why. These nifty devices are perfect for keeping you cool during those hot summer months, without the need for expensive and invasive installation. It's easy to transport and can be used in any room of the house, making it a versatile option for anyone looking to beat the heat. Moreover, their great designs and modern features will definitely add a stylish touch to your home. It's no wonder portable air conditioners are becoming more and more popular every year; join the excitement and get your hands on one today!

Noisy portable air conditioners? This is a common complaint

Have you ever tried to relax in your room with a portable air conditioner humming loudly in the background? It's frustrating! But fear not! In this blog post, we discuss the best solutions to help reduce the noise level of your air conditioner. We all know how important it is to get a good night's sleep, especially during the hot summer months. That's why we love sharing our tips and tricks with you! From soundproofing your room to selecting a quiet portable air conditioner, we've got you covered. If you're tired of waking up to the loud sound of your portable air conditioner, read on for some interesting solutions.

Why Portable Air Conditioners Can Be Noisy

Have you ever wondered why portable air conditioners can be so darn noisy?! I'm so excited to dive into this with you! Let's get to the bottom of what's causing all this confusion. The compressor, fan, and exhaust hose all contribute to the fan's noise level. But what's really interesting is the physics behind the sound. As air passes through particles, it creates turbulence and vibrations that can cause noise. Isn't that wild?! Understanding the science behind why our AC units make noise is just one of those weirdly interesting things that I love learning about. So next time your portable AC is making a fuss, you'll know exactly why!

How Noisy Are Portable Air Conditioners?

I am so excited to share with you my research on portable air conditioners! One of the most common concerns people have before purchasing a portable AC is how much noise it will make. Well, let me tell you, these devices are actually pretty quiet! Most modern models come equipped with noise-reducing technology and operate at a level that won't be too disturbing to your ears. Plus, you can always adjust the fan speed and temperature settings to find the perfect balance between coolness and quietness. With a portable AC, you can enjoy a comfortable indoor temperature without having to worry about any annoying sounds. Trust me, once you try one out, you'll wonder how you ever lived without it!

How to Measure the Noise Level of a Portable Air Conditioner

Have you ever wondered how loud your portable air conditioner really is? Well, let me tell you about the decibel (dB) scale! This handy tool is used to measure the noise level of your AC unit. The scale ranges from 0 dB (which is completely silent) to 140 dB (which is considered the threshold of pain). Most portable air conditioners fall somewhere between 49 and 65 dB, which is equivalent to a quiet conversation or background music. Knowing the noise level of your air conditioner can help you find a comfortable spot in your home without compromising your peace and quiet. So, get excited about finding the perfect portable air conditioner that won't break the decibel bank!


Here's a quick breakdown of typical decibel levels for various sounds:

 30 dB: A whisper

 50 dB: Normal conversation

 60 dB: Busy office environment

 70 dB: Vacuum cleaner

 80 dB: Alarm clock

 90 dB: Lawnmower

When it comes to air conditioners, noise levels can vary significantly based on the model and type. Portable air conditioners typically fall within the 50–75 dB range.

Can air conditioners be quiet?

Is there a way to make a portable AC quieter?

If you already own a portable air conditioner and are looking to make it quieter, here are four tips to help you achieve silent portable air conditioner operation:

1. Ensure a Level of Surface

One of the simplest ways to reduce noise from your portable air conditioner is to place it on a flat, level surface. Uneven surfaces can cause vibration and, consequently, increased noise levels.

2. Place a Rug or Mat Underneath

If your air conditioner is already on a level surface but still produces too much noise, placing a small, low-pile rug or mat underneath the unit might help. Be cautious not to use a thick rug or mat, as it may obstruct airflow and negatively affect the unit's performance.

3.Regular Maintenance

Keeping your device clean and well-maintained is crucial for ensuring quiet portable air conditioner operation. Regularly clean the filters, check for any loose parts, and address any issues promptly to keep your air conditioner running smoothly and quietly.

4. Insulate the exhaust hose

If you're looking to reduce the noise generated by your air conditioner, insulating the exhaust hose with soundproofing material can be quite effective. This part creates a lot of noise, so taking steps to reduce noise can make a big difference in your quality of life.

5. Use the Sleep or Quiet Mode

Many portable air conditioner models come with a sleep or quiet mode setting, which reduces the fan speed and, in turn, the noise level. Utilising this feature when you need a quieter environment can be quite helpful.


Morris air conditioner quiet portable

Are all portable AC noisy?

Not all portable air conditioners are considered noisy. While it’s true that some models can be loud due to the compressor and fan operation, many modern portable air conditioners are designed with noise reduction features. These can include insulated compressor compartments, dual motor technology, or low-noise fan blades to minimise sound output.

The noise level can vary significantly between different models and manufacturers. Some portable air conditioners operate at noise levels as low as 42 dB, which is relatively quiet and comparable to the noise level in a library. Others may be louder, especially if they have a higher cooling capacity or lack noise-reduction features.

In general, for portable air conditioners, the acceptable noise level is until 65 and 70 dB.

It’s always a good idea to check the specific noise level ratings when considering a portable air conditioner to ensure it meets your preferences for a quiet environment.

Why are portable AC so loud?

Portable air conditioners can be loud due to several factors:


The compressor is a key component that pumps coolant through the unit. It has many moving parts, and the friction caused by these parts can result in noticeable noise. To decrease the portable air conditioning sound, try to use a model with a GMCC compressor. Both Morris models, 7000 and 9000 btu, are using this compressor.


The fan inside the portable AC contributes to the noise as it works to circulate the cool air throughout the room.


The design of the portable AC might lead to restricted airflow, causing the unit to work harder and produce more noise.


Loose parts or an uneven surface can cause additional vibrations, increasing the noise level.

Manufacturers are aware of the noise issue and often design newer models with noise reduction features like insulated compartments and low-noise fan blades to minimise sound output. However, the inherent design of portable AC units, which includes both a compressor and a fan within a compact space, generally leads to higher noise levels compared to other types of air conditioners.

How loud should portable AC be?

How loud should a portable air conditioner be?

The acceptable noise level for a portable air conditioner can vary depending on personal sensitivity and the intended use of the space. Generally, a noise level below 65 decibels (dB) is considered good for indoor environments, as it is relatively quiet and similar to the noise level of a busy working environment.


For bedrooms or quiet study areas, you might prefer a portable AC with a noise level closer to 40 dB, which is about the level of a library or the background noise of a quiet residential area. This ensures that the AC won’t disturb sleep or concentration.


Morris quiet portable air conditioner in the UK


However, some portable air conditioners may operate at higher noise levels, especially when set to maximum cooling power. It’s important to check the manufacturer’s specifications for the noise level and consider how the unit’s sound will integrate into your living or working space. If a silent portable air conditioner operation is a priority for you, look for models specifically designed with noise reduction technologies.

What is the difference between “Sound Pressure Level” and “Sound Power Level”?

The metrics of “Sound Pressure Level” and “Sound Power Level” are not exclusive to portable air conditioners; they are used across various types of air conditioning units. These measurements are standard for describing the noise levels produced by air conditioners in general, whether they are portable, window, or central units.


The difference between “Sound Pressure Level” and “Sound Power Level” in the context of a portable air conditioner is as follows:

Sound Pressure Level (SPL)

This is the measure of the pressure deviation from atmospheric pressure caused by a sound wave, and it’s what we actually hear. SPL is measured in Pascals (Pa) and often expressed in decibels (dB), which is a logarithmic scale. The SPL can vary depending on the distance from the sound source and the environment’s characteristics, such as room size and acoustics.

Sound Power Level (SWL)

This represents the total acoustic energy emitted by the sound source, regardless of its environment. It’s a theoretical value that doesn’t change with distance or location, measured in Watts (W) and also expressed in decibels (dB). SWL provides a consistent measure of the sound source’s strength.


In essence, SPL is what you measure in the environment where the sound is heard, while SWL is the inherent sound-producing capacity of the device, irrespective of where it’s measured. When comparing portable air conditioners, SWL can give you a better idea of the unit’s overall noise output, while SPL tells you how loud it will be in a specific setting

Final Thoughts

Quiet portable air conditioner in the UK is achievable with the right model and a few simple adjustments. You can enjoy a quiet and peaceful environment by understanding the decibel level, choosing a quieter model, and following our tips for quieting your air conditioner.



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