How to Build a Cheap Air Conditioner

The summer is coming and it is getting hot! Want to stay cool and avoid sky rocketing electricity bills?!

Building a simple and cheap air conditioner may be the answer for you. With this project, you will be able to cool your room using a standard household fan. Try it out and stay cool all summer long.

Parts list:

The Layout:

You need to figure out the best layout for you new DIY air conditioner. In my example, I will be placing the PVC elbow on top of the Styrofoam cooler facing out. The fan will then be placed next to the PVC fan. This layout can be adjusted to your specific need. Just have fun with it.

The purpose of this setup is to blow the cool air contained in the Styrofoam cooler out through the PVC elbow which will act as the exhaust vent for your air conditioner. The cold air is created by placing ice in the cooler. The more ice you place in there, the cooler the air will be. It’s that simple!

Cutting Out the Holes:

After settling on the placement for your PVC elbow and fan, you can now start cutting the holes. If using the Styrofoam cooler shown in the video, simply take a steak knife and cut out the appropriate sized holes using the pipe and fan as a guide. This should be extreme quick and easy.

Once the holes have been cut, insert the PVC pipe through its hole. The fitment should be pretty tight and should create a decent seal. If you would like to make it even more air tight, you could consider applying silicone sealer around the edge. I personally did not feel it was necessary but your mileage may vary.

Place the fan ontop of the hole you cut for it and turn it on. You want to make sure that air comes out of the PVC pipe as the fan is blowing down in to the cooler. If this is a success then consider yourself finished with this project.


Once you have ensured that air comes out through the PVC elbow, start adding ice to the cooler. Just remember that the more ice you place in the cooler, the colder the air will be.

So how does this perform?

Well… surprisingly good actually! Now don’t expect to cool your entire house with this cheap air conditioner, but using this project in a room or office area would be perfect. The best part is that you can leave this running for hours without affecting your electricity bill. You will only be limited to the amount of ice you have and how long it takes it to melt.

I hope you enjoyed this simple project! There is more to come, so stay cool!

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One comment

  1. It’s actually a nice and useful piece of information. I am satisfied that you simply shared this useful info with us.
    Please stay us informed like this. Thank you for sharing.