Portable air conditioners are the best solution for cooling small to medium-sized rooms and do well in RVs. They cool your space quickly, save you money, and give you efficient service for a respectable number of years.
However, for the portable air conditioner to work optimally, it needs to be properly vented. With the different types of windows in homes, installing portable air conditioners can become quite tricky, especially with awning windows. Despite the dilemma, there are solutions to solve the problem.
Installing Portable Air Conditioner in Awning Windows
Awning windows are crank windows that open outward from the bottom. They have hinges on the top and fly screens installed on the inside to protect them from outside elements. Awning windows allow good room ventilation and prevent falling objects such as leaves and rain from entering the house.
Ventilating single-hose portable air conditioners are a challenge, but dual-hose air conditioners are a different story. Even though most portable air conditioners come with window kits, hardly any offer window kits for awning windows.
However, with the right equipment and techniques, the challenge of installing portable air conditioners in awning windows can be met and perfectly mastered. There are several ways to do this.
To do this, we first need to measure our awning window. Then, with the measurements, go to a local store or buy a window seal in the appropriate size from Amazon.
The installation of a window seal is very simple. First, we clean the frame and sash of the awning window. Let it dry. Then we attach the Velcro strips to the frame and the casement. Next, we take the seal and attach it with the Velcro strips on all sides.
Now open the window slightly and open the zipper in the seal. Squeeze the air hose of the air conditioner through the zipper. Secure the hose with a zip tie to keep it secure. That is how you install a portable air conditioner with a window seal in awning windows.
You can also use polycarbonate to install a portable air conditioner on your awning window. To get the polycarbonate, go to your local hardware store and ask for a supplier of 1mm polycarbonate. You can also get it from a plastic sheet supplier.
Do not take anything thicker than 1mm, as it’s too thick to score. There’s also a risk that the polycarbonate will crack. So cut the polycarbonate according to the dimensions of the window.
If you use 1 mm, you can easily score it with a Stanley knife. Score the hole for the vent on both sides of the panel about a dozen times. This can take a lot of time and bending back and forth. Keep doing this until you can pry the hole out.
You can also tape the whole sheet to the window casement with sticky Velcro. Cut two holes for portable dual hose air conditioners. You may need some extra tubing for this. This solves the complexity, and your AC will work quickly.
Don’t use acrylic sheets to replace the glass, as they may break. Also, acrylic sheets can have serious health consequences if they contact heated objects. Therefore, it’s much better to use polycarbonate.
One way to vent your portable air conditioner in the awning window is through Plexiglas. To do this, you’ll need to go to your local hardware store and get a piece of Plexiglas cut to the appropriate dimensions. You’ll also need a roll of self-adhesive Velcro tape.
This is a very cheap and long-term solution that’s probably ideal for awning windows. You’ll also need to cut a hole in the Plexiglas for your vent hose. Remember that the plexiglass must be cut to the size of the window.
You need to install a plexiglass sheet with a hole for the portable air conditioner’s exhaust vent in the window frame. Stick the Velcro on the window (the part that moves) and the window frame (the part that holds the window closed).
In this way, you can conveniently attach the exhaust hose of the portable air conditioner. If you use a double hose, you need to cut two holes according to the dimensions.
Plastiboard and Pegboard
As with most other portable air conditioners, if the portable air conditioner is equipped with a window slider and vent connector, you can also attach it to your awning window using a plastiboard. If the window slider and vent connector are separate, you can connect the vent connector anywhere.
First, go to your local hardware store and get a large plastiboard (the corrugated plastic sheets used for signs). Then cut it to the size of your awning window. Cut a hole in the plastiboard near the “bottom” (that’s the bottom where it’ll be installed) and screw the vent connector to the plastiboard.
Then tape the plastiboard to the awning window casement and attach the hose to the vent flange. However, if your portable air conditioner generates a lot of heat, the plastiboard may sag, the duct tape may come off, and the gasket may break.
This can allow hot air to get in. One way to solve this problem is to use long, thin wooden stiffeners on the sides. This might compromise the esthetics of the window, but it’s worth a try.
You can also use a thin sheet of wood, I.e., pegboard without holes. You can find them at your nearest hardware store. They are water-resistant on one side and look better than plain wood. Also, it’s very cheap and sturdy and can hold screws if you figure out a way to screw the hoses in.
Despite all these techniques, no method is completely stable. One of the most significant disadvantages of awning windows is that they cannot be heavily modified. Therefore, it’s best to find alternative ways.
One possible alternative is to change the window setting from awning to sliding or casement windows. Portable air conditioners are more suitable for these types of windows. They’ve come with an arrangement that facilitates installation.
Another alternative is to forgo the windows and use the ceiling or wall installation. If you install portable air conditioners with a hole in your ceiling or wall, you will get a sturdy and durable setup without sacrificing the pleasure of your window.
Installing a portable air conditioner in awning windows can be quite a complicated job if you don’t have enough experience in using portable air conditioners.
However, the above methods are effective, and if you follow them, you can accomplish the task on your own with ease.