Pros: easy set up, cools the house FAST, easy to use, no warm-up time needed, multiple-speeds
After suffering through last seasons inordinately hot summer, it was time to get an air conditioner for the house. We don't have central air, and the problem with our house is that it seems to suck in the heat during the summer months, and doesn't let it go unless you get the high-powered fans going to exchange the air. Even doing that though, it doesn't cool it past the temperature outside, and when you are dealing with 100 degrees during the day, and 80 degrees at night, it just isn't fun anymore, no matter how many fans you have in the house. We went out searching for an air conditioner after putting it off for quite a while, simply because we weren't sure that we would be able to either afford the initial purchase or the electricity bill when it was running at full strength. In the end, both thoughts became quite negligible when suddenly we were feeling cool comfort during the hot months, and no longer sweating all over the place and dreading coming home at night.
The model that we ended up purchasing was the Haier (formerly Commercial Cool) 12,000 BTU, 115V Portable Air Conditioner. The produce number for this particular product is CPRD12XC7, which is important to note, because they have several other models with very similar denotations. It was a little more powerful than we were looking for, but we found it on sale for the same price that we were thinking about paying for a smaller model, and thought to ourselves that this was a deal that we couldn't possibly pass up. After some hemming and hawing about whether we should make this big of a purchase without much to go on in regards to customer reviews, we ended up buying it the first day we saw it, and went through the process of getting it into the car. It was a little bit of a task, because the model is about 33 inches tall, 20 inches wide, and 16 inches deep. It's a little large, yes, but that is because it packs quite a powerful punch when you get it all revved up.
When you pull the air conditioner out of the box, it is very, very easy to set up. The wheels are already attached, the base is connected, and there are no moving parts that you have to worry about with this pre-assembled model. What you do have to do though, is attach the air outlet hose and the air intake hose to the back of the machine. This is done very simply with the instructions that they provide, and the nozzles that you attach. These nozzles are what extend to your window or screen door in order to bring in and exchange the air that is going to be cooled and flushed into your house. The pipes hoses themselves extend (and retract) to being about 6 feet in length I would guess, allowing you to do just about anything you want with the air conditioner. When everything is set up, you are ready to turn the machine on. This is a portable machine, but if you want to put it in one room permanently, they provide a window kit to screw it down and leave it there.
The air conditioner comes with 3 cooling speeds as well as three fans, that can be worked inter-changeably, and allow you to use just the air conditioner or just the fan. On top of the air conditioner is a LCD display screen that shows you what mode you have the machine set to, and exactly what temperature it is at the back of the machine, as well as what the air temperature is that the machine is putting out. Using the display, and the up or down arrows, you can adjust the temperature from the current temperature down to 61 degrees Fahrenheit to get it really cold in your house. As soon as you turn the machine on, the cold air comes right out, and you get surprised every time at just how quickly it works. It's not like the car where you have to warm it up briefly at first; this machine works immediately. That also applies to its auto evaporation function which allows continuous operation without the inconvenience of water removal as well as the dehumidification function that condenses the moisture on a cold surface, removing it from the air, and preventing mold from growing on any surfaces in the house. To top it off, there is also a great remote control that controls every function on the machine, and can be used from across the room.
The wheels on this machine have been worked quite frequently, as we will wheel it from the great room into the bedroom at night, or just to another area right where we are sitting. It is easy to move around, and even though it is heavy, you can move it because the wheels work so well. The machine has worked extremely well for us, and there hasn't been a second where we regretted making the purchase. The cost of the machine was just over $400.00 after taxes, and quite a chunk from our budget, but in the end, it was one of the best purchases we have ever made. The Haier Portable Air Conditioner does a great job at cooling down large rooms and areas, it is easy to wipe down if you get anything on the exterior, it is basically self-sustaining with its ability to auto evaporate and dehumidify, and the 3 fan settings give us the option to make it as cold (as fast) as we want in the house. This is a product that we are extremely happy that we purchased, and finding it to be worth every penny, give it the highest recommendation possible.