The 6 Best Air Conditioners of 2022

Our choice

Midea U MAW08V1QWT

This U-shaped Midea air conditioner is the quietest model we’ve ever tested, and it’s designed in such a way that you can open your window. But the installation process is no fun.

The Midea U MAW08V1QWT is simply the quietest air conditioner we’ve ever tested, but that’s not the only reason it stands out from the crowd. He also has a inverter compressorwhich means it uses about half as much energy as alternating current without an inverter. And unlike traditional air conditioners, which typically lock your entire window in the closed position as long as they’re installed, the Midea U has a unique U-shaped design that lets you continue to open and close your window as usual, for example, if you want better circulation on a cooler day when the air conditioner is not running. As part of this design, Midea is also moving most of the louder hardware on the back of this device so that it sits outside the window, using the glass as a buffer layer to further cut off sound. . Plus, it comes with its own bracket, worth around $100, that locks firmly into the sliding tracks of your sash window. The Midea U is Energy Star certified and Wi-Fi also enabled, with simple and convenient smart home integration. But there is a catch: the installation process. While the process is easier than it looks, it’s still more complex than installing your typical AC, and you won’t get much helpful advice from reading one of the four instruction manuals. supplied with the Midea U.

Also great


The quietest non-inverter AC we’ve ever tested, this GE model is an attractive alternative, with touchscreen controls, soft LED indicators, and easy smart home integration.

If you are looking for more traditional window air conditioning, the GE PHC08LY is the quietest available, and it also looks better than most. In its dedicated quiet mode, it’s comparable to the Midea U in volume; even with the compressor running and the fan on max, it’s still quieter than the average Conversation or any other AC we’ve tested. Touch controls and soft LED lights give it a sleek, futuristic feel, and GE’s recently updated smart home integration allows for seamless, natural voice commands. It’s also one of the few models we’ve seen with Apple HomeKit integration, as well as Location Services, which you can use to automatically turn off AC power when you’re away from home (or on). when you are). This model isn’t as energy efficient as the Midea U (despite being Energy Star certified), it also doesn’t come with its own security mount, but it’s also much, much easier to install than our first choice, and it’s just as pleasant to live with.

Also great

Frigidaire FHWW083WBE

This Frigidaire unit is easy to install and cools a room as well as our top pick for a slightly lower price. However, the sound is a little grittier, especially at lower fan speeds.

We like to think about Frigidaire FHWW083WBE like the old trusty of window air conditioners. We’ve been recommending it (or its nearly identical predecessors) since 2014, and it’s always proven to be a reliable and affordable option. It’s a bit louder than our other picks (although it’s still quieter than most ACs), with a less pleasant mechanical growl that’s more pronounced when you run it at lower settings. But it still cools the room quickly and efficiently, and it generally costs less than our other picks while offering comparable smart home performance and capabilities. If you want to save even more money, the Frigidaire FFRE083WAE is essentially the same unit minus the smart home capabilities.

Also great

windmill air

The Windmill Air is the simplest air conditioner we’ve ever installed, and it has many other nice, thoughtful details that make it great to live in overall.

The windmill air It might not be as quiet or efficient as our top pick, but it’s much, much simpler to set up, and it offers plenty of other thoughtful features that make it easy to live with. It’s also one of the best-looking ACs we’ve ever tested, with rounded corners and subtle indicator lights that won’t keep you up at night. The unit even has a plastic cover on the back, so you won’t cut your hands on those razor-sharp exhaust fins, and the app includes a shortcut to find help at installing TaskRabbit. All in all, it’s a great AC if you just want something that blends into the background and gets the job done without a hitch.

Also awesome

Gallery Frigidaire GHWQ083WC1

The inverter-style Frigidaire Gallery GHWQ083WC1 is one of the most energy-efficient air conditioners we’ve ever tested, with lights and sounds that essentially fade into the background.

The inverter style Gallery Frigidaire GHWQ083WC1 is as efficient as our top pick, using nearly 40% less energy than the federal standard for air conditioners and offering all the same smart home features. It’s slightly louder than the Midea, but it’s still essentially unnoticeable in the room unless the fan is on high. That same fan also helps the Frigidaire maintain even more impressive cooling consistency across the room than we’ve gotten from other ACs we’ve tested. The LED display on the control panel switches off automatically after a few seconds so as not to illuminate the room (although this can also be annoying sometimes, for example when you want to check the settings). The Smart-Home app can sometimes be a bit annoying. But despite the flaws, this Frigidaire model ranks among the best ACs available.

Budget choice


In the interest of value, practicality, and waste reduction, your friend’s old air conditioner may be your best bet, as long as it meets some basic modern standards.

After testing dozens of air conditioners over the years, we’ve found that many of the models we end up rejecting tend to be noisier, less efficient, and harder to live with than our picks. But on a hot day, they can get the job done — and sometimes that’s all you really need. Rather than recommending a specific new model at a low price that we could not in good conscience call a high value, we offer detailed but flexible advice on how we would buy any used air conditioner available whenever you will find it. . As long as the unit has been manufactured within the last decade, it should be about as efficient as a new one. (If going second-hand isn’t right for you, check out the Thread Cutter Deals page and some of the competitors we tested.)

This guide also includes recommendations for other types of air conditioners, namely units through the wall, casement window modelsand the new U-shaped window saddle units. We have our portable air conditioner recommendations in a separate guide.

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