Portable Air Conditioner (just Add Ice)

Introduction: Portable Air Conditioner (just Add Ice)

About: On the hunt for my proverbial "post-college-job", teaching Karate, building a better world one great Instructable at a time!

Central air wasn't working so well in my bedroom, so I decided to make this to cool down me / my room.

Also, this makes an awesome backup in case your AC breaks, this little guy will tide you over until the repairman shows up.

Step 1: Find a Bucket, or Something of the Sort That Can Hold Ice Without Leaking.

I found this at Walgreens (obviously) for $5.

I think the fan was about $15, depending on how powerful you want this to be, you can get a bigger fan, just so you know for future steps that the fan can't have a bigger diameter than the lid of the box you buy.

Also, if you buy a cheapo fan, it probably won't be strong enough to blow the cold air on you!

Step 2: Find a Awesome Workbench to Get Started

Got all your pieces and parts?

You'll need:

The bucket / Styrofoam cooler


Knife / saw / scissors (something sharp)

BBQ grill or wire mesh of some kind

Duct tape

Some nails (I used Golf tees, not really sure what inspired me to do that but whatever)

A rectangle of cardboard, or a tube, or a hose, or whatever you want the air to come out of.

Screwdriver to take the stand off the fan.

And when the project is done you'll need ice!

Step 3: Measure 3 Times, Cut Once

Remember the title, these are words to live by when building anything.

Lay the fan on the lid, trade around it (make sure you cut a small enough hole that the fan rests comfy on it's lip, not so big that it falls in.

Cut said circle, and adjust to make sure the fan fit's snugly.

Step 4: Attaching Your Tube

I cut a hole slightly below the mesh (next step). The reason I cut it below and not above is that the air is forced to go through the ice before blowing out.

Don't put the hole too far down.

You want to leave a couple inches at the bottom for the water to accumulate.

I used a Mountain Dew box, however feel free to use anything you see fit. Cut some wings out of the box at one end and attach around the hole.

Step 5: Meshhhhhhhhhhhhh


This will hold the ice up so don't get anything too flimsy or with holes so big the ice cubes will fall through it.

I found this at Walgreens too for like $1.79 I think.

Cut or bend to fit in the box just above the hole you cut and secure as best you can with screws, nails, staples, anything really.

Step 6: Add Ice, Plug In, Aim at Your Face, and Enjoy!

Depending on how much ice you add, or whether its cubes or a solid block, it should last between 2-5 hours.

I started out with using ice cubes, but then just took the biggest tupperware tub I could find, and froze a solid block and that lasted for 5 hours ish.

It brought the temperature of my room down A LOT (I was living in Florida at the time, so it made a huge difference)

This is one of the easiest Instructables I've made. Probably because it didn't involve any wood. All in all it took me about an hour to finish it.

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