How do you vent a portable air conditioner with a small window?

To vent your portable air conditioner out of a small window, you need to replace the glass with acrylic or foam board or use an alternative method.

Portable air conditioners are single, self-contained units, which makes them incredibly flexible, but it also means they need regular maintenance.

Part of this ongoing maintenance is venting portable air conditioners out of a window. This can be challenging if you have tiny windows, but it is possible.

What to consider before buying a portable air conditioner

Portable air conditioners are a convenient solution for when you cannot install a central air conditioning unit, but you still want to make the air in your room comfortably cool and relatively dehumidified.

These units are convenient, because they can be moved around your rooms and between different rooms in your house, so that the air conditioner can cool you down wherever you are.

However, because portable air conditioners are so compact, they do require more regular maintenance and can be louder than other types of central air units.

How do you vent a portable air conditioner with a small window?

The other thing that is important to take into account about a portable air conditioner is that unlike other types of air conditioners, portable air conditioners need to be vented out of the window.

Window air conditioning units, central air units, and mini-split ductless AC units move hot air and moisture to the external part of the unit, but portable air conditioners are not split between an inside and outside unit.

Thus, they need a vent for the hot air and moisture that is accumulated during the air conditioning process.

Most air conditioners come with vents and window kits, or you can purchase a window kit yourself, like this bestselling Gulrear Portable AC Window Vent kit that allows you to easily vent your portable air conditioner out of your sliding window, vertically or horizontally.

However, this becomes a problem if you have any window that is not a sliding window and that is too small for the window vent kit to fit into.

This is a common problem that people with encasement windows, basement windows, and any other kind of smaller window spaces, have.

Fortunately, there are ways that you can construct your own vent kit for your smaller window, using clear acrylic or foam board, and there are alternative ways to vent your air conditioner if your window is not a viable option.

Using clear acrylic to vent a portable air conditioner with a small window

If you have a smaller window, or a window that does not slide open and closed, you can remove the glass in the window entirely and replace it with clear acrylic in order to vent your portable air conditioner properly.

To do this, you can simply remove the glass from the window that you want to place the vent in, get an acrylic sheet, and cut it to the same size as the window glass.

You will then need to cut a hole in this piece of acrylic for the vent to fit through, using an acrylic knife or drill bit.

The clear acrylic has the benefit of not obstructing your view out of the window and letting sunlight into the room.

Using foam board to vent a portable air conditioner with a small window

In much the same way as the clear acrylic sheet, you can also use foam board to make your own window vent kit and replace your smaller window glass.

This is a good option if you do not need sunlight from this window or if you are not bothered by losing the view from this window.

You also need to cut a hole in the foam board for the vent hose to fit through, using an X-Acto knife.

In order to secure and insulate these makeshift foam board or acrylic window fittings properly, you need to use weatherstripping around the edges, as this will prevent dust and moisture from entering the room.

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Other venting options

If your window is just entirely too small to be an option or you just prefer not to vent your portable air conditioner out of a window, there are other venting options that you can consider. Portable air conditioners can be vented through holes in the wall or ceiling if this is a viable option for your space.

You can also find a sliding door vent kit, like this best-selling Gulrear Portable Air Conditioner Sliding Door Vent Kit, which will allow you to vent your air conditioner out of a sliding door instead of through a window.

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