Planning Your DIY Homemade Air Conditioner

As we mentioned, the number one step in any DIY project is to plan out your work.


The first thing you need to plan is what you intend to use your air conditioner for. You can very easily make a cooler of any size, and much smaller than the one you see in this tutorial. That important detail will dictate what you need.

My goal was to make something that would help make my friend’s garage more reasonable to hang out and watch football in. It had to be something cheap, easy and portable; that would actually blow cold air instead of just blow hot air around.

Because of what I wanted to do, a larger air conditioner was needed. I used a 45 quart Styrofoam cooler. I also chose to use a 3” air duct because I figured that would be sufficient to direct air. You could really use any type of air duct, or even none at all (just a hole).

I chose to use a 12V DC fan meant for a computer to push the air for my air conditioner. I chose this particular fan because it provided more RPMs than most of the other fans, while being able to operate at only 6V of power. That made it easy for me to be able to use a variety of different kinds of batteries and solar panels.

Next: Preparing the Cooler
Back: What you Need