Are you looking for an efficient way to cool a garage?

Have you been thinking about getting a dedicated garage air conditioner but are not sure which one to buy?

If so, this guide is for you.

We’ll take an in-depth look at some of the best garage air conditioners on the market and show you how each one operates to keep you cool while you work.

As you’ll see, the best AC unit for a garage comes in various types to suit your specific needs and budget. You can choose between portable, window, ductless mini split, and evaporative coolers.

By the end of this page, you’ll have everything you need to make a well-informed decision on buying the best air conditioner for a garage of any size, with or without windows.

Disclosure: Home Air Guides is reader-supported. As an Amazon associate and affiliate for independent brands, we earn from qualifying purchases made through the links on our site. Learn more.

Garage Air Conditioners Reviewed in this Guide

Here’s a quick comparison chart showing the top garage air conditioners. We’ll cover each aspect of these units in the reviews section below, but this gives you an idea of what’s available and an easy way to compare them.

ImageAir Conditioner DetailsPrice
Senville SENL-24CD Air Conditioner
  • Best Garage Air Conditioner
  • BTUs: 24,000
  • Coverage: 1,250 to 1,500 square feet
  • Average Decibels: 32 dBA
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Whynter ARC-14S Air Conditioner
  • Best Portable Air Conditioner for Garage
  • BTUs: 14,000
  • Coverage: 500 square feet
  • Average Decibels: 56 dBA
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MIDEA U Inverter Air Conditioner
  • Best Window Air Conditioner for Garage
  • BTUs: 8,000 to 12,000
  • Coverage: 300 to 550 square feet
  • Average Decibels: 42 dBA
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Pioneer WYS018G-19 Air Conditioner
  • Best Mini Split for Garage
  • BTUs: 9,000 to 36,000
  • Coverage: 200 to 1,300 square feet
  • Average Decibels: 39 to 54 dBA
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Honeywell CO60PM Air Conditioner
  • Best Evaporative Cooler for Garage
  • Reservoir Tank Capacity: 15.9 gallons
  • Coverage: 850 square feet
  • Average Decibels: 62 dBA
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STANLEY 655704 Air Conditioner
  • Best Blower Fan for Garage
  • Speed Settings: 3
  • Coverage: 200 square feet
  • Additional Features: Built-in circuit breaker and two integrated outlets
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Portacool Jetstream Air Conditioner
  • Best Air Conditioner for Garage with No Windows
  • Reservoir Tank Capacity: 50 gallons
  • Coverage: 700 to 5,625 square feet
  • Average Decibels: 65 to 76 dBA
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Dyson Hot + Cool with Jet Focus Air Conditioner
  • Best Air Conditioner for Garage Gym
  • BTUS: 1,500
  • Coverage: 400 to 500 square feet
  • Average Decibels: 43 to 64 dBA
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Midea MAP08R1CWT Air Conditioner
  • Best Air Conditioner for Small Garage
  • BTUS: 8,000 - 14,000
  • Coverage: 150 to 330 square feet
  • Average Decibels: 51 dBA
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Hessaire MC37M Air Conditioner
  • Best Air Conditioner for 2 Car Garage
  • Reservoir Tank Capacity: 10.3 gallons
  • Coverage: 950 square feet
  • Average Decibels: 59 dBA
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Best Garage Air Conditioner Reviews (Top 10 List)

1. Best Overall Air Conditioner for Garage: Senville SENL-24CD

Although mini split air conditioners are the most expensive option, they are considered the best garage air conditioners on the market.

This is because mini split systems have a more energy-efficient cooling output than any other type of air conditioner. They also don’t need to be installed into a window to vent out hot air, so they are ideal for installing in garages.

The Senville SENL-24CD is one of the best garage mini split air conditioners available. Not only will it cool a garage down, but it also features a heat pump that can heat an automotive space and workshop during the winter. 

The 24,000 BTUs of power will provide cooling and heating to a garage measuring up to 1,500 square feet.

This air conditioner also has a dehumidifier function that can control the level of humidity inside your garage. Plus, there is a turbo feature that you can use to give the air conditioner an extra boost on particularly cold or hot days. 

Other top features include a timer, sleep mode, and adjustable fan speeds. All of these can be easily operated with the included remote control.

You don’t need to worry about this air conditioner making loads of noise while it’s running in your garage either, as it has a whisper quiet noise level of just 32 dBA.

One thing to bear in mind is that mini split air conditioners are a little more difficult to install than any other type of air conditioner, so you may have to employ the help of a qualified AC technician to do it for you. Although, if you do feel confident installing it yourself, you’ll find everything you need in the included installation kit.

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2. Best Portable Air Conditioner for Garage: Whynter ARC-14S

If you’re looking for a less permanent setup, then the Whynter ARC-14S may be the best air conditioner for a garage for your purposes.

Not only can this unit be easily moved around, but it can be vented in three ways:

  1. Through a window using the included window slider kit.
  2. By leaving the garage door open and feeding the exhaust tube through the gap.
  3. Or, if you’re planning on using the air conditioner regularly, you can cut a hole through the wall or a permanently closed garage door and attach the exhaust tube here to vent out the hot air.

The 14,000 BTUs of power this air conditioner operates with allows it to cover a space of up to 500 square feet. It also has a moderate to low noise level output of less than 56 dBA, so you won’t have to worry about it making too loud of a sound while it’s running. 

It has a dual-hose function that allows you to cool down and dehumidify a garage at the same time. The dehumidifying function can also remove up to 71 pints of water a day from the air which is nice for humid regions.

Other features include a 24-hour programmable timer, an automatic drain function that exhausts condensation for you, and full thermostat control between 61ºF – 89ºF. 

This portable garage air conditioner is easy to use and features clearly labeled buttons and an LCD screen. You can also power it on and off, as well as cycle through each of the functions from across the room by using the included remote control.

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3. Best Window Air Conditioner for Garage: MIDEA U Inverter

If your garage has a window, then it’s a good idea to take full advantage of it and install a window air conditioner. 

The MIDEA U Inverter is an excellent choice here because it gives you continued access to your garage window. Thanks to its unique u-shaped design, there’s no need to worry about uninstalling it if you want to open the window to get fresh air to let automotive or workshop odors escape.

The u-shape design also blocks noise coming into the garage from the cooling system, giving it a super quiet noise level of just 42 dbA.

This air conditioner is also capable of blowing cool air across 20 feet directly in front of it, which helps to cool abny garage down faster. 

There are three sizes to choose from and each one is best suited for different sized garage:

One of the really great things about this air conditioner is that it is Wi-Fi enabled. This means that you can switch it on or off and access the various features using your smartphone. It can also be linked to a smart home assistant, such as Google Home or Alexa, allowing you to control it using only your voice.

This garage air conditioner is really easy to install too, and it comes with a support bracket that keeps it firmly in place when you’ve got the window open and closed. 

It’s also highly energy-efficient and uses 35% less power than a conventional air conditioning unit. This helps to keep your energy bills lower and your carbon footprint in check.

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4. Best Mini Split for Garage: Pioneer WYS018G-19

Similar to our #1 best garage air conditioner review, the Pioneer WYS018G-19 mini split air conditioner is also a fantastic choice for long-term use in a garage space. 

It is an expensive model, but it’s certainly worth every cent if you’re looking for a permanently installed, energy-efficient cooling system.

There are a total of six different sizes to choose from, giving you the opportunity to find the right power for the size of your garage or workshop:

The 18,000 BTU version is the most popular of all these sizes. That is because it is able to cover the most common square footage size of a garage. It also has a super-quiet noise level of just 45 dBA, so it won’t disturb you or your neighbors while it’s running. 

The noise level of each size changes depending on how many BTUs it has, ranging from 39 to 54 dBA.

Features include a timer, turbo mode, and fan speed adjustments. It also features a self-clean mode, which helps keep the unit maintained and takes all of the hard work out of manual cleaning.

This garage air conditioner is easy to use and comes with a handy remote control for convenient operation. Plus, it offers a Wi-Fi add-on option, so you can operate it using your smartphone if you want to pay for that added convenience.

Everything you need to install this air conditioner is included if you want to perform the installation yourself. However, you may need to hire a professional air conditioner technician to install it for you if you’re not confident to do this type of job. 

Pioneer gives you access to free technical support and the parts and compressor come with a 5-year warranty.

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5. Best Evaporative Cooler for Garage: Honeywell CO60PM

The Honeywell CO60PM evaporative cooler works by using evaporation to cool the air within a space, which sets it apart from a traditional air conditioner. 

This unit works by using thick pads that absorb water stored in an internal reservoir. And as hot air is drawn in, the water molecules evaporate, causing the air temperature to drop. 

That process is one of the most efficient ways of reducing the temperature within an enclosed space such as a garage that doesn’t have its doors opened regularly.

The extra-thick, three-sided honeycomb pads cover three-quarters of the entire machine and 16-inch fan blades that make sure the cool air is well distributed. Those features allow this evaporative cooler to cover a garage space of up to 850 square feet. 

It also features a hose connection, which allows you to run the air conditioner continuously without having to worry about regularly refilling the water reservoir. There’s even an innovative ice compartment that helps speed up the cooling process on particularly hot days. 

If you choose to use the 15.9-gallon tank located on the bottom of the machine, you won’t have to empty the cooler too frequently. It’s also easily accessible, so when the time does come to empty it you’ll be able to get the cooler running again within minutes. 

This evaporative cooler is highly portable and features wheels that can be used to maneuver it around a garage or between rooms with ease. It’s also incredibly easy to install and simply needs to be plugged into a wall outlet. There’s even dedicated cord storage that comes in handy when you want to store the cooler away.

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6. Best Blower Fan for Garage: STANLEY 655704

Sometimes you just want something that’s simple to install and ready to use whenever you need it. This is where the STANLEY 655704 blower fan makes a great choice.

There’s no need for window installation or for arranging a visit from a professional air conditioner technician. Instead, simply plug this unit into an electrical outlet and you’re all set.

The three fan speeds give you control over how quickly you can cool a space. It also features a pivoting head that allows you to direct the airflow and circulation where you need it, which also speeds up the cooling process.

As this blower fan only needs to be connected to a wall outlet, it can be placed wherever you need it. This makes it one of the most portable choices on our list, and it can be moved from inside the garage to outdoors whenever you need.

It has a couple of additional features that give you extra value for money too. 

The first are two integrated 110V outlets. These can be used to plug tools into and effectively turn the blower fan into an extension cord while you’re working.

This blower fan also features a built-in circuit breaker to ensure that you’re kept safe while it’s running and to protect against overloading. 

It arrives fully assembled and ready to use straight out of the box, and it features a grounded plug that is attached to a 10-foot long power cord.

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7. Best Air Conditioner for Garage with No Windows: Portacool Jetstream

Some garages and workshops don’t have windows, and this can make it a little more difficult to find an air conditioner that can help keep it cool during the summer months. 

Thankfully, the Portacool Jetstream now exists.

This air conditioner was created specifically for garages and workshops where there are no windows or doors to open. And, since Portacool understands the issues that come with cooling down a windowless garage, this brand created the perfect size option for everybody’s needs. 

Whether your garage is large or small, you can choose from the following sizes:

This air conditioner works by using the evaporative cooling method, passing hot air through a set of pads that absorb cool water. This is what takes away the need for access to a window and ensures that the air is cooled quickly and efficiently. 

The extra-large 50-gallon reservoir tank means that there is less of a need to refill the cooler regularly too. It can run for many hours, and even days before a refill is needed. 

As for the noise level, the decibels change depending on the size of the unit you buy. The Portacool 220, for example, measures 62 dBA on the lowest fan speed setting and 68 dBA on high. The Portacool 260 measures 65 dBA and 78 dBA respectively.

Overall, this is the best air conditioner for a garage with no windows that can accommodate any size space.

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8. Best Air Conditioner for Garage Gym: Dyson Hot + Cool with Jet Focus

If you’ve transformed your garage into a home gym and are looking for an effective way to keep cool while you train, then the Dyson Hot + Cool with Jet Focus is exactly what you need. 

The Jet Focus feature is what makes it such a great choice for gyms. This allows you to direct the airflow towards a specific place, so even when you’re lifting heavy weights or hitting new strides on the treadmill, you’ll have a consistent stream of cool air to prevent you from overheating. 

Another reason why this air conditioner is a good choice for a garage gym is that the tower fan design allows you to adjust the temperature more efficiently, so you’ll never be too hot or too cold while you train.

It also features an intelligent thermostat that monitors the temperature of the room and maintains your selected degree. That way, you can maintain a set temperature without having to mess with the unit.

The tower fan design also makes it highly portable, and it doesn’t need to be permanently installed. Instead, you can simply plug it into a wall outlet, select your desired temperature, and you’re ready for instant cooling.

As its name suggests, this air conditioner offers both a cooling and heating function. This is achieved through patented Air Multiplier Technology, and that makes it a good choice for year-round use. By investing in this gym air conditioner, you’ll be getting much more value for your money because it doubles as a heater.

There’s no need to worry about any safety issues with this air conditioner either, as there are no exposed heating elements. And, if the machine is accidentally tipped over, it will automatically shut off. 

This unit is stylish and has an aesthetically pleasing design that would look great in any garage gym. It’s also available in two colors (white or blue) to suit your personal taste and can be easily operated using the included remote control.

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9. Best Air Conditioner for Small Garage: Midea MAP08R1CWT

As you saw in our #2 review, portable air conditioners are a popular choice for garages as they are easy to install and move around. 

The Midea MAP08R1CWT is a great choice for smaller spaces, and there are four sizes to choose from, which means you can find the perfect size for your garage:

The portability of this air conditioner means that it can be installed in your garage without being restricted by windows. It can also be vented in the three ways mentioned in our #2 review, giving you even more flexibility over the installation. 

There are three operating modes included with this air conditioner: cooling, dehumidification, and fan only. Therefore, you can quickly change modes to get the cooling type you desire.

You get full control over a 62ºF – 90ºF temperature range as well as the ability to set a 24-hour timer that shuts the air conditioner off after a certain period of time.

A remote control is included with this unit for super-convenient operation. 

Or, if you’d like to bring your home into the modern age, you can upgrade to the Wi-Fi version. This will allow you to operate your air conditioner using your smartphone and voice control through devices like Alexa.

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10. Best Air Conditioner for Garage for 2 Car Garage: Hessaire MC37M

If you have a 2 car garage to cool down, then you’ll need an air conditioner that can cover it adequately. 

The Hessaire MC37M is a great option for this because it can cover up to 950 square feet with ease.

This is an evaporative cooler style air conditioner so there is no need to worry about venting hot air or permanent installation. It also has a large 10.3-gallon reservoir tank for the most portability. However, you can also attach a garden hose to the brass fitting for continuous cooling without ever running out of cold air.

The 3-sided pads provide increased evaporative surface area for generating cooler air along with the three fan speeds to make it much more efficient at cooling the air quickly.

Because this unit doesn’t need to be permanently installed, it can be placed wherever you have an available outlet in your garage. It can also be moved around easily using the built-in casters, which can be locked into place to keep the air conditioner in position. 

The 59 dBA noise level keeps things relatively quiet while it’s running as well, so you’ll be able to use it continuously without any fear of it disturbing your work. 

It also arrives fully assembled, so it’s ready to use straight out of the box.

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Garage Air Conditioner Buying Guide

If you need some additional help on how to choose a garage air conditioner, then this section can be beneficial.

Below, you’ll find out more about the various types of air conditioners for garages, features to look for in a new unit, and answers to the top questions people have about these units.

We also have a garage heater reviews page if you’re looking for a heating option as well.

Types of Air Conditioners for Garage

Window Air Conditioner

As the name suggests, a window air conditioner needs to be installed into a window, and they are highly effective for cooling small to medium-sized garages.

Pros of Window Air Conditioners for a Garage:

  • Affordable: Window air conditioners are generally less expensive than other garage air conditioners that need permanent installation. 
  • Energy-Efficient: While they aren’t as energy efficient as mini-split air conditioners, there are many Energy Star Certified window air conditioners. This means that the unit will use the least amount of energy possible while cooling.
  • Multiple Features: Window air conditioners come with multiple features including remote control operation, timers, fan speeds, different modes, and some have Wi-Fi capabilities.

Cons of Window Air Conditioners for a Garage:

  • Installation: Some garages don’t have windows, which makes installing a window air conditioner impossible.
  • Window Size: If you’re lucky enough to have a garage with windows, you may still find that you’re restricted by window-size. Most window air conditioners are designed to be installed into regular windows. Garage windows tend to be much smaller as a safety measure, which can make it harder to find a window air conditioner that fits. 

Portable Air Conditioner

Portable air conditioners are a great choice for garages because they don’t need to be permanently installed and they can be set up in a matter of minutes. 

Pros of Portable Air Conditioners for Garages:

  • Affordability: Portable air conditioners are fairly inexpensive. They also don’t need to be permanently installed, so there aren’t any hidden installation costs with them either. 
  • Portability: A portable air conditioner can be set up anywhere as long as it is properly vented. Your options for venting are out a window, through the gap between a garage door and the floor, or through a hole cut in the wall or a closed garage door. Once vented, these units can be moved from room to room or around your garage as required. This also allows you to focus airflow on a specific target, rather than cooling down the entire garage at once.

Cons of Portable Air Conditioners for Garages:

  • Exhaust: Portable air conditioners need somewhere to exhaust the hot air they’ve pulled out of a room. If you can’t properly vent the hot air through the hose, then it’s best to get a different type of garage air conditioner.
  • Space: Even though portable air conditioners are generally quite small, they still take up floor space. If you have a small garage, this is something you’ll want to consider. 
  • Durability: Being placed on the floor leaves portable air conditioners open to the risk of being bumped into. This means that they may suffer damage more easily than a wall mounted or window air conditioner.

Evaporative Cooler

Evaporative coolers work really well at bringing the temperature of a garage down without needing to be connected to a window. They work by using pads that absorb cold water (added through an internal reservoir or continuous supply) and then evaporate it into the air as a way to cool it.

Pros of Evaporative Air Coolers for Garages:

  • Energy-Efficient: Evaporative air coolers are by far the most energy-efficient way of cooling a garage. On average, they use around 75% less energy than any other type of air conditioner, so they are great for keeping your energy bills in check and reducing your carbon footprint.
  • Cleaner Air: The pads inside an evaporative air cooler can act as a filter to trap dust particles and airborne allergens. This makes them a good choice for anybody that suffers from certain allergies, or simply wants clean and well as cool air. 

Cons of Evaporative Air Coolers for Garages:

  • Humid Environments: They aren’t the best choice for humid environments. If there is too much moisture in the air, the system simply won’t work correctly. An evaporative cooler used in humid environments could also cause corrosion and condensation to the machine. 
  • Maintenance: Over time, salt and mineral deposits will build up in the pads and this will need to be removed. 
  • Not as Cold: Evaporative coolers do not remove hot air, so these units cannot cool the air as low as other types of air conditioners. If you want to set a specific temperature on the machine, then it’s best to choose a different type.

Ductless Mini Split Air Conditioner

Ductless mini split air conditioners are revered as “state of the art” in terms of air conditioning and cooling. They come in two parts, with one half permanently installed on the inside wall of the garage and the other half permanently installed on the outside wall. 

A power line and refrigerant line connect the two halves together through a small hole that’s been cut out of the wall, and a condensate drain carries water from the indoor unit out of the garage. 

Mini split air conditioners are highly efficient at keeping a garage cool during particularly hot weather and, despite their high BTU power, they are also really energy-efficient.

Pros of Mini-Split Air Conditioners for Garages:

  • Efficiency: Mini-split air conditioners have the highest SEER and EER ratings of any type of air conditioner. This means they are highly energy-efficient, so they are cheaper to run and will reduce your carbon footprint. 
  • Size: There are loads of different sizes to choose from with mini split air conditioners. This means that you have more variety to find a size that suits the size of your garage for better efficiency. 
  • Heating & Cooling: Most mini split air conditioners are able to produce hot and cold air. This gives them year-round use and you’ll be able to keep your workspace cool in the summer and warm during the winter. 

Cons of Mini-Split Air Conditioners for Garages:

  • Price: Efficiency comes at a price, and mini split air conditioners are the most expensive of all garage air conditioners. So, if you’re working with a smaller budget, you’d be better off going for another type of air conditioner.
  • Installation: While most mini split air conditioners come with an installation kit, you still need to know how to run electrical wiring and be comfortable mounting the two parts of the system to install it properly. If you’re not comfortable with this, then you’ll want to hire an HVAC technician, which will come at an extra cost. 

Blower Fan

If you want simplicity and portability, then a blower fan could be the best choice. These units are designed to simply plug into an electrical outlet and blow cool air. 

Pros of Blower Fans for Garages:

  • Portable: Because these units don’t need to be permanently installed, a blower fan can be used anywhere. All you need to do is plug it into a wall outlet, turn it on, and you’re good to go.
  • Targeted Cooling: You can position a blower fan at a certain angle to cool down specific areas much better than you can with any other air conditioner. If you’re working on a project and want cool air on you at all times, you can simply set it up directly in front of yourself.

Cons of Blower Fans for Garages:

  • Space: As with portable air conditioners, blower fans take up floor space or table space.
  • Lacks Features: Blower fans don’t have the full set of features that other air conditioners offer. Some units do have built-in electrical outlets, so they can be used as an extension cord, but you won’t find timers or Wi-Fi controls.

Features to Look for in a Garage Air Conditioner

Best garage air conditioner

Size (Cooling Capacity)

You wouldn’t try heating a large room using a small heater. The same principle applies to cooling. Anything too small will use more energy and take a longer time to cool your garage, so it’s important to look at the size of your air conditioner. 

This cooling capacity of an air conditioner is measured in BTUs or British Thermal Units.

There is often a lot of confusion around BTUs, but to put it simply, the higher the BTU number is, the larger the space your air conditioner will be able to cool efficiently. 

Just remember that air fills an entire space. So you also need to consider the height of your garage in addition to the width and length. If you have a small garage with an above average height for the ceiling, then you’ll need a higher number of BTUs.

To make things easy for you, we’ve included a handy BTU size chart a little further below that will help guide you towards choosing the perfect air conditioner size for your garage.

Noise

Although noise is less of an issue with a garage air conditioner than it is with a home air conditioner, you’ll still want it to be as quiet as possible. Anything that’s too noisy will disturb your peace and could potentially result in complaints from your neighbors.

Luckily, most air conditioners are designed to operate as quietly as possible. If you’re looking for a super-silent machine; however, we’d recommend going for a mini split air conditioner or an evaporative cooler. These units operate in virtual silence and don’t have the roar of louder types of air conditioners.

The decibel levels of the air conditioners reviewed on this page average between 42 dBA to 68 dBA.

Portability

You’ll also need to think about whether you’d like to be able to move your air conditioner around your garage, between rooms, and store it away when it’s not needed. If you need these options, then you’d be better suited to a portable air conditioner.

If you’re not particularly concerned about any of these things, then a permanently-installed garage air conditioner would be a suitable choice. 

Energy Use

Some air conditioner units use more energy than others, and there are two things to keep in mind here: electric bills and the environment.

It’s safe to assume that you would like to keep your energy costs and your carbon footprint as low as possible. With this in mind, it’s always a good idea to look for an air conditioner that has a good SEER or EER rating (when applicable). 

These ratings means that the air conditioner uses less energy to function so nothing goes to waste.

Generally speaking, portable garage air conditioners tend to use the most energy while mini split air conditioners use the least amount of electricity to cool a garage.

Energy use also goes hand in hand with the size of your air conditioner. Higher BTUs require more energy. Also, using an AC unit that’s too small for a garage means that you’ll need to run it for longer periods of time which requires more energy.

Maintenance

As with all appliances, garage air conditioners need to be properly maintained to keep them working well for years to come. So it’s worth looking into the ease of maintenance.

Many air conditioners come with easy-access filters that can be removed and cleaned whenever necessary. Some even have built-in indicators that tell you when the air conditioner needs to be cleaned and, as an extra safety measure, they will automatically turn themselves off until they’ve been cleaned.

As a general rule, window air conditioners, portable air conditioners, and evaporative coolers are the easiest to clean. Mini-duct air conditioners are a little harder because they can be mounted high up on a wall. But since these units are so efficient, they often do not need to be maintained as regularly.

Garage AC BTU Calculator

We’ve spoken above about how important it is to get an air conditioner for your garage that has the right number of BTUs for the space. You can work this out by using a BTU calculator or for faster reference take a look at our handy BTU size chart below:

Room Size (Square Feet)BTUs
100 – 1505,000
150 – 2506,000
250 – 3007,000
300 – 3508,000
350 – 4009,000
400 – 45010,000
450 – 55012,000
550 – 70014,000
700 – 100018,000
1000 – 1,20020,000
1,200 – 1,40023,000
1,400 – 1,50024,000
1,500 – 2,00030,000
2,000 – 2,50034,000

Sizing a Garage Air Conditioner

Sometimes working out the size of your garage can be difficult though, so to make things even easier we’ve created a quick reference guide that will help you find the right size garage air conditioner based on the number of cars it can contain.

Number of CarsBTUs Recommended
18,000 
212,000
316,000
420,000

The above guide is meant to be simplistic; however, there are a few extra things you need to bear in mind when you’re properly sizing a garage air conditioner:

  • Insulation: If your garage doesn’t have any insulation, then you should add an extra 2,000 to 4,000 BTUs to the size you need.
  • Position: If your garage faces south and/or west, add 1,000 to 2,000 BTUs.
  • Climate: If you live in an area with particularly hot summers, add 1,000 BTUs. 

How to Increase Garage Air Conditioner Efficiency

Best air conditioner for garage

While a garage air conditioner will do a fantastic job of removing hot air from your garage and keeping it cool during the summer, you may still run into some efficiency issues if your garage is uninsulated. 

Below, we’ll take a look at some of the most important areas to consider when you’re looking to increase your air conditioner’s efficiency. 

Garage Door

Garage doors absorb a massive amount of heat during the day, which means that your air conditioner will have to work extremely hard to keep the temperature down. 

By installing insulated garage doors, you can reduce the amount of heat that finds its way in and your air conditioner will be able to work more efficiently. 

You should also replace any insulating strips that surround your garage doors and check that all cracks are sealed. 

Ceiling

If your garage has a room above it, it can also absorb a lot of heat from that space. 

To stop this from happening, install some rolled insulation to the garage ceiling. This will help keep the garage cooler and keep your air conditioner working efficiently.

Walls

Adding insulation to your garage walls will also help to keep it cool during the summer months. 

If you’re on a budget, we’d recommend starting with the walls that get hit by sunshine the most, and then focusing on shaded walls. This will keep a great amount of heat out of your garage and, in turn, your chosen air conditioner will be able to function efficiently at all times. 

Windows

Most garages don’t have windows, and in those that do, the windows only represent a small percentage of the heat that comes into the garage.

It’s still worth trying to keep as much heat out as possible though in an attempt to keep your air conditioner working efficiently.

To do this, cover the windows with a sheet of plywood or blackout curtains. This will stop light from penetrating through and adding to the heat. If you’d still like to let light in or retain the view from your garage windows, then you can use a reflective film instead. 

Common Questions About Garage Air Conditioners

Can you put an AC unit in the garage?

You can put an AC unit in the garage. In fact, there are several types of air conditioning units that are suitable for garages, including window air conditioners, portable, mini splits, and evaporative coolers. 

How many BTUs for garage air conditioner?

A typical two-car garage measures somewhere between 20 feet wide by 20 feet deep. A 400 square feet garage like this requires a 9,000 to 10,000 BTU air conditioner. 

How big of an air conditioner do I need for my garage?

Determining how big of an air conditioner you need for a garage starts with measuring the size of the space. Garage air conditioners range in size from 5,000 BTUs to 34,000 BTUs to cover 100 square feet to 2,500 square feet of garage space.

Generally speaking, the larger the garage is the more BTUs the air conditioner should have.

How to vent a portable air conditioner in garage?

If your garage has a window, then vent a portable air conditioner using the window kit. If not, you’ll have to vent the portable AC unit through a hole cut in the wall or under the garage door.

Enjoy Your New Garage Air Conditioner

Best garage AC unit cooler

We hope you enjoyed this guide on how to choose the best garage air conditioner for your home or workplace.

As you learned, the best AC unit for a garage comes in various types, and you can pick the exact model to fit your comfort level for installation and budget.

Just remember that the best air conditioner for a garage will be the one that can cool the total square footage of the work area. So be sure to pick the AC unit that can meet the demands of your garage space.

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About Patrick Holmes

Patrick is a Senior Air Quality & Comfort Specialist. He conducts in-depth research and analysis for our product reviews and buying guides in order to offer expert recommendations for people who are seeking to improve their indoor air quality and comfort. (See Full Bio)