How To: Beat the Heat with an $8 Homemade Air Conditioner

Beat the Heat with an $8 Homemade Air Conditioner

If you're breaking a sweat in the summer heat, but not trying to break the bank, this dead simple trick will show you how to make your own air conditioner for under ten bucks.

What You'll Need

  • 1 styrofoam cooler
  • 2 dryer vents
  • 1 small fan you've probably got lying around
  • Ice

Build It!

  1. Place the vents on the lid of the cooler on each side and trace them on—get as close as possible to ensure a snug fit.
  2. Place the face of the fan in the middle of the lid and trace that out as well.
  3. Cut out the traces with a knife, making sure to cut on the inside of the lines for the fan, so it has something to sit on.
  4. Place the vents into the holes.
  5. Clean up excess styrofoam pieces as they will fly all over the place once you turn on the fan and get the air conditioner going.
  6. Place the face of the fan on the lid.
  7. Place ice-filled bottles or bags into the cooler.
  8. Fire up the fan and enjoy the cool breeze!

And Take It a Step Further...

For an added bonus, anyone up to the challenge can also create a USB powered mini-AC as well!

What You'll Need

  • 1 small box
  • 2 PC fans
  • 1 switch (optional)

Build It!

  1. Cut two holes for fans in the box, one each for intake and outtake.
  2. Put the fans on top of the holes and seal them with hot glue.
  3. If you plan on using a switch, attach the two fan cables and both red wires to the AC connections (usually in the center).
  4. Attach the black cables to the ground connection.
  5. Seal it all together with hot glue.
  6. Take a USB cable and cut off the end, then snip off the green and white wires (not are for data, we only need the power).
  7. Wrap the red and black wires to a 9-volt battery connecter (red on red, black on black.)
  8. Add ice into the box and plug it in!

Boom! Now you can stay cool without worrying about an overpriced AC unit or crazy energy bills. And remember, ice packs are much easier for cleanup, and their reusability keeps everything environmentally friendly.

2 Comments

Great idea. I must try this. Will let you know how it turns out.

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