My Comprehensive Review of the Shinco YPL310C Portable Air Conditioner

The sun is in the sky, the weather is bright and hot, the days are long and everyone is happy – or least they are supposed to be! The hot weather and summer days are great, but they do bring one downside and that is stifling heat.

Shinco 10000 BTU Portable Air Conditioner CoolingFan with Remote Control in WhitePerhaps you’ve had enough and decided that now is the right time to invest in a Shinco Portable Air Conditioner. You’ve done some online research online and you’re looking for a Shinco YPL310c review. If so then read on, you’ve come to the right place.

First of all, rest assured that the Shinco YPL310c is an excellent unit. Shinco are a growing force in the portable AC world and have recently upped their game in terms of quality and value. In fact I’d say they were now in a position to challenge the more established manufacturers like DeLongi and Honeywell.

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This article will focus on answers to some key questions to help you decide if this unit it right for you. The specific questions I’ll answer during this review are:

  • What is the cooling capacity of the unit?
  • How do you vent the hot air?
  • Is it easy to control?
  • Does it require a lot of maintenance?
  • How heavy and portable is it?
  • What do other people say about the unit?
  • and many more…

How Does The Shinco Look?

First of all, it’s small. At only 17 inches deep x 13 inches wide x 31.3 tall inches it’s one of the more compact units I’ve come across. This model is ideal for smaller rooms like a bedroom, dorm room, study or summer house as it takes up less space.

The unit only comes in white but that’s fine as white tends to be neutral and fits in with most decor schemes so the unit shouldn’t stand out too much in your room. The air output grill is on the front of the unit and takes up the top quarter of the front panel. There are a couple of nicely contoured sweeping curves that do a good job of breaking up an otherwise plain front panel. These curved lines lead off the curved edges making the unit look aerodynamic and actually fairly pleasing on the eye (not that it’s going to be going anywhere fast!)

The control panel is conveniently placed on the top of the unit towards the front. It has an LCD display which clearly displays the set temperature, and blister type buttons for controlling temperature, fan speed, power, timer and mode of operation (more on these later). The controls are really easy to use and intuitive so you should be up and running and an expert in no time.

 

Photo from YPL310C user manual

Extract from YPL310C user manual

Remote Control

The remote control is simple and functional. It doesn’t have an LCD screen to display the mode of operation and set temperature. Some of the remote controls that come with the more expensive units have this screen which is handy but really it’s not a major issue as the display on the unit is big enough to see this information clearly anyway.

You can carry out all of the functions available for selection at the unit itself. In addition to these you can only operate the Max Cool, Timer and Sleep modes from the remote control. So if you’re likely to be using these modes don’t lose it!

What Is The Cooling Power of the 10,000 BTU Shinco?

The YPL310c is rated as 10,000 BTU. This converts into enough cooling power for a room of up to 300 sq/ft. To give you a better idea of the dimensions, 300 sq/ft. is around 12 ft. by 25 ft, or 10 ft by 30 ft. if you have a long thin room such as a hallway. Most people comment that the unit easily cools this area, and with the help of an additional circulation fan could even cool larger areas.

Modes of Operation

The unit can operate in 3 modes:

  1. Cooling – the standard air conditioner mode
  2. Fan – no air conditioning but the unit will circulate the air around the room, much like a conventional fan – this is great for cooler weather where you don’t need the air cooled but do want a cool breeze
  3. Auto – the unit will switch between air cooling and fan depending on the temperature of the air. If it’s above 77oF it will switch to cool mode. Below 77oF it’ll switch to fan mode.

Special Features

Timer – on / off
If the unit is switched off then this option will allow you select the number of hours before it will automatically switch on. If the unit is on, the number selected will determine when it will automatically switch off. The timer can be set between 1-24 hours. This great if you want the unit to switch on in time for you coming home to relax after a hard day’s work, or even if you want it to come on first thing in the morning so you wake up to an already cooled room.

Max Cool
Turns the fan and cooling system on full and doesn’t take account of the set temperature. Ideal for giving a room a kick start when you first switch the unit on.

Sleep Mode
Often when you’re asleep you don’t need the temperature to be as low. This mode will reduce the fan speed to low and increase the set temperature by 1 degree for every 2 hours running for a maximum of 2 degrees and then maintain that temperature. So for example, if your set temperature is 74 degF and you activate the sleep mode, the unit will increase to 75 after 2 hours and then 76 after 4 hours. It’ll then maintain that new set temperature.

Sleep mode is great for saving you money on your energy bills.

How Portable is the Unit?

This is a fairly small portable air conditioner and as mentioned before is 17in deep, 13in wide x 31.3in tall. It weighs 52lbs which is one of the lightest portable air conditioners on the market. The wheels are excellent and allow it to roll easily on wood, laminate and even carpeted floors so you can roll it from room to room. The window kit which is used to attach the hose to a window takes only seconds to remove and then re-install in another room.

Although 52lbs is light for a small portable air conditioner it’s still a fairly heavy weight. This is not an issue if you’re using the roller wheels but may be more of an issue for some people if you needed to lift it up and down a set of stairs each day, say to an upstairs bedroom or study. There are some handles on each side to help with lifting – these really are useful and something that some other units don’t include but they make lifting the unit far, far easier. Check out this link for correct lifting techniques.

How Do You Vent The Hot Air?

All portable air conditioning units need to vent hot air outside. See my complete buyer’s guide to choosing the best portable air conditioner for a more in-depth explanation of why. The Shinco YPL310C is a single hose unit so is simple to install. You simply attach the window adaptor kit and connect the hose.

The window kit is good for windows between 27 inches and 52 inches in length and is simple. This should be suitable for most windows and can be fitted in either a horizontal or verticle position so it does offer a lot of flexibility. Most people vent portable air conditioners through a window however if there isn’t a suitable window in the room you can get a small hold drilled in the wall (best to use a builder for this) or even vent it into the attic.

Top Tip: Remember that when you are installing the unit you need to leave 20in behind the unit to allow room for the hose that links the unit to the window.

What Level of Maintenance Does The YPL310c Require?

You’ll be pleased to know that there is very little maintenance required with this a/c unit. The only two activities you need to carry out are:

  1. Cleaning the air filter every 2 weeks
  2. Emptying the excess moisture tray as and when required (not very often for most people)

The air filter is easy to remove and inspect, and if you find it’s clogged with dust then simply wash it in some light detergent and then dry completely before placing it back into the unit. Note that it’s important that you do clean the air filter regularly because a clogged filter can have a negative impact on the efficiency of the unit.

The unit re-uses most of the moisture it extracts from air. It does this by using it to help in the cooling process. However in areas that are particularly humid (above 80%) then you may need to empty this tank from time to time. There is a small plug at the back of the unit and all you need to do is place a small tray under it, unplug the cap and let the water drain out. There’s not a lot of space between the outlet and the floor so wheeling the unit over to a step and lifting it onto a small table might help during this process. As always, be careful when lifting the unit!

It’s worth pointing out that the product description on Amazon.com says that the unit doesn’t have a water tank. This is incorrect. The unit does have a water tank, it just shouldn’t need to be emptied very often. I’ve logged this error with Amazon so it might be updated by the time you read this.

Is The Unit Noisy?

Loudness Chart

All air conditioning units create noise. This is due to the fact that they contain pumps, compressors and fans which are all moving pieces of machinery. A portable air conditioner has all of this equipment in the room with you because they are contained in one unit, unlike split, central or even window units which have some or all of the noisy equipment either outside or in a different part of the building.

That said, the YPL310c noise level is reported to be around 52-55 dB(A). To give you an idea of this level of noise, check out the loudness comparison chart on the left. As you can see it’s somewhere between the noise of a dishwasher in the next room and a busy office. How noisy you find something is can be based on a variety of factors including your hearing, what you are used to and what other background noise already exists in your home.

It’s been reported that the unit creates a constant white noise which some people actually find relaxing either straight away or after a short period of time. One of the big complaints about some units is that when the unit switches from cooling to fan mode the sudden change in noise or “click” can disrupt this constant white noise, particularly if you’re asleep. The YPL310c doesn’t have this issue and switches between both modes without a change in noise. This is great if you plan to use this unit in a bedroom while sleeping.

What Warranty Is Included?

If you scan the customer feedback on Amazon and other sites, it’s clear that the Shinco YPL310C is a reliable portable air conditioner. That said, there are still a very limited number of cases where the unit has broken down and stopped working. Shinco provides 1-year labor and parts warranty to support the unit. They also offer an extended 3-year warranty on the compressor.

Amazon offers the option to purchase an additional 1-year cover for a very reasonable price, so it might be worth considering that if you want extra peace of mind that you won’t be paying out for repairs for the next 2 years. An extended warranty is often a good idea if you’re likely to be a heavy user of the PAC unit.

What Are The Best Buying and Delivery Options?

Prices do change all the time but my online research showed that Amazon.com was by far the cheapest option. Some sites offered free delivery, but even taking the Amazon delivery into account it was still the lowest price and best value. It was also available on Amazon Prime. As a side note, I also checked out the extended warranty cost at Home Depot and it was more than 2 and a half times the cost of the offer at Amazon! So if a warranty is something you are looking to purchase then Amazon is certainly great value.

pros and cons, for and against argument conceptWhat Are The Overall Pros and Cons?

Positives

  • Easy to assemble window kit – up and running in about 10 minutes
  • Quick to cool rooms – cools the room in about 20 minutes
  • Consistent noise during operation – there is no “click” or change is noise as the unit switchs between cooling and fan only mode, so no disruption to the white noise the unit creates

Negatives Points

  • Construction quality – some people who have given the unit 1 star have reported issues with the build quality. That said, the majority of others have reported that the device is well built and sturdy.
  • Reliability – A small number of buyers have complained that the unit stopped working after a short time or never worked from day 1. Again, there are plenty more who report that it’s been an excellent buy.
  • Leakages – the water tank very rarely needs to be changed. However, a small number of reviews have mentioned that this tank started leaking.

The YPL310c Review Verdict

4 stars

Overall I’m going to give the unit a review score of 4 stars. There are well over 700 reviews on Amazon.com and planty of them have given the unit 4 or 5 stars (as of April 2017).

The unit is cheap, looks great and has a simple-to-use interface and remote. It’s light (in PAC terms), low maintenance and easy to set-up and run. This is just what you want from a portable unit. The unit is noisy but all units are. However, the noise is constant so most people filter it out after a short while.

The warranty is in line with most others offered in the industry, and delivery from Amazon.com is quick. This unit is well worth considering if you’re in the market for a 10,000 BTU unit for a room of up to 300 sq/ft.

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