I am in a two bed open plan flat. I use this unit to cool the living/dining/kitchen area leaving the bedroom doors closed. I've had
experience with two other (different brand) 'portable' units and the main complaint with those is they didn't cool the space and the water tray needed emptying all the time. If the tray was not
emptied several times a day they would just shut off. I waited one full season before writing a review as I really wanted to see how well it works. It's a year later and I've just dragged
it out of the closet and set it up again and its running beautifully. Running from 9am-8pm with the temp set to 68/70 I empty the tray once every 4-5 days. It has never once shout off on me and I
have had ZERO trouble with it.
I made a few modifications given my previous experience with these units and would like to share them with you:
I added a filter to the INTAKE side. I bought a sheet of basic air filter (this is a washable DuPont carbon air filter). Often the reason units stop working is they become dirty in the bowels of the machine you just cant get to and a cheap filter goes a long way to extending the units life.
I REALLY made an effort with the window installation. The units I've had in the past came with a sticky on one side foam strip to bridge the inevitable gap which allows air through. My only complaint with this unit is that it did not come with one of these (why I subtracted one star). So what I did - and it worked brilliantly - was to use the foam packing that the unit came in. It came with two densities and worked perfectly using dble sided sticky tape and a Stanley knife on the top, bottom and sides.
My third tip is about emptying the water. Nothing comes with unit to help. What you need it a shallow rimmed dish (The Ikea KALAS plate is PERFECT) and a smoothie straw (Bed Bath & Beyond) which is just wider diameter straw cut to desired length. This fits the spout like a glove. It can be done alone but better with two people. When emptying you will need the shallow dish, a straw and a container to toss the water into so you're not dashing to the kitchen 5-10 times. Have one person at the back - I use my 9 year old - and one larger person a the front. With shallow dish and straw in place the larger in front person tips the unit towards the rear. The rear person says when to stop and will empty the shallow dish into the other container with out having to get up then tell the 'tipper' when to resume. Do this till empty.
This unit comes with two holes, one intake and one venting. There is a flaw in the design in that the exit holes out the window are RIGHT NEXT TO EACH OTHER. Imagine two mouths glued side by side one inhaling one exhaling. The inhaling/intake side is going to breath IN the hot exhaled/venting air. What I did was to saw off a portion of the PVC slider (it was just going in the bin) and attach it like a wing between both outside holes. Perfect!
Many have made mention of the noise. The sound doesn't bother me and I have it next to my desk where I work all day in my living room. It' very subjective.