In this article I will introduce you to the portable air conditioner De’Longhi Pinguino PAC EX100 Silent. I have tested the portable air conditioner at the hottest summer temperatures over a longer period of time and would like to show you my experiences with the system here.
The portable air conditioner was given to me by De’Longhi for the test period, for which I would like to thank them once again. De’Longhi has no influence on the test result.
Table of Contents
- 1 The main features
- 2 Technical specifications
- 3 Scope of delivery and extras
- 4 Function and design of the De’Longhi Pinguino PAC EX100 Silent
- 5 Installation and commissioning De’Longhi Pinguino PAC EX100 Silent
- 6 Integration into a Smart Home System
- 7 Usability and features
- 8 Control behaviour
- 9 Conclusion
- 10 De'Longhi Pinguino PAC EX100 Silent
- 11 Pros
- 12 Cons
The main features
The De’Longhi Pinguino PAC EX100 Silent is a portable air conditioner with single hose technology, which is suitable for the air conditioning of rooms up to 110 m³ (approx. 25 – 35 m²) and is especially suitable for rented apartments, since retrofitting air conditioners is usually difficult or not wanted by the landlord. If you need a system with higher performance or for larger rooms, here are the bigger siblings of the De’Longhi Pinguino PAC EX100 Silent:
Compared to split air conditioners, all components are located in one unit, so the PAC EX100 Silent is a monoblock air conditioner.
The coefficient of performance “Epsilon”, (EER – Energy Efficiency Ratio), is 3.6 for the portable air conditioner, which speaks for efficient performance. The energy efficiency rating for the cooling system is A++.
With propane (R290), a natural refrigerant is used, which has very favorable thermodynamic properties and a very low Global Warming Potential (GWP) of 3.
The PAC EX100 Silent is a direct evaporative cooling system, which takes the room air via the air conditioner, cools it down and then spreads it into the room via a fan. The waste heat is conducted to the outside through a window or door via an exhaust air hose.
The system has a dehumidification function for the cooling mode and uses the condensation water, produced in this process, to cool the evaporator, which enables the machine to operate more efficiently. Furthermore, there is the “ECO REAL FEEL mode” which automatically adjusts the temperature reduction and humidity control. The portable air conditioner has a remote control, an LED display, a 24h timer and an integrated pollen and dust filter.
There is no direct interface for a smart home system. So I thought about integrating the De’Longhi Pinguino PAC EX100 Silent into a smart home system using a Smart Plug* and then controlling it with a voice control like Amazon Alexa*. But then I read the following in the manual:
” Never turn off the air conditioner by only pulling the plug. Press the ON / OFF key and wait a few minutes before pulling the plug. In this manner, the appliance can perform the operating status checks.” Manual Page 20.
Upon request to De’Longhi I received the following response:
“The plug is not meant to be used to shut off the device, and an immediate shut off not driven by the normal ON/OFF could led to an unusual plug deterioration due to an immediate electricity cut, together with the home plug where it is connected. The correct way to shut off the unit is the use for ON/OFF as all electric appliances with cable and plug. Anyway there are no strictly dangers for the unit, plug excluded.”
In the following you will find all important information about De’Longhi Pinguino PAC EX 100 Silent:
- closed refrigerant system
- integrated dust filter and pollen filter
- integrated dehumidification function
- separate ventilation function
- 3 fan speeds
- Remote control
- timer function (24h)
- Window exhaust bracket included in delivery
- Exhaust air hose included in delivery
- no integrated Smart Home interface
- no integrated interface for voice assistants
Scope of delivery and extras
The De’Longhi Pinguino PAC EX100 Silent comes in a 35 kg package. Since this is not easy to transport, the package should be transported to the planned location by at least 2 persons.
In addition to the portable air conditioner (1), the delivery package includes two hose adapters (2), a window outlet (3), a cross piece for sliding windows (4) with associated crosspiece grille and cap for crosspiece hole (7), an air exhaust hose of approx. 1.2 meters in length (5), a wall flange connection for attachment to a wall opening (6) with accessories for wall mounting (8), an operating manual (9) and a remote control with batteries (10). A window seal is not included in the delivery!
IMPORTANT: The scope of delivery does not include a window seal for portable air conditioners for mounting on doors, windows or skylights. This must be purchased separately. I have chosen the HOOMEE window sealing* because it is also suitable for roof windows.
In my opinion, a window seal is absolutely necessary because it greatly reduces the backflow of warm outside air into the air-conditioned interior and discharges the warm air from the air-conditioning unit via the exhaust air hose to the outside.
From my point of view the included exhaust hose is also quite short with about 1.2 meters. In my case it was by no means sufficient. I would recommend buying an additional exhaust hose* so that both can be connected afterwards. The diameter of the included hose is 130 mm. Below you will find a small overview of different exhaust hoses.
Function and design of the De’Longhi Pinguino PAC EX100 Silent
In this section I would like to introduce you to the functions and the construction of the device, so that the subsequent commissioning can be carried out without problems. In the following picture you can see the visible parts of the De’Longhi Pinguino PAC EX100 Silent.
The air outlet for the conditioned supply air is located on top of the device (1). The air outlet can be swivelled and thus ensures an optimized spreading of the cooling air in the room. The LED display (2) and the control panel (3) for setting various functions are located underneath. On both sides of the portable air conditioner there are handles (4) and wheels below the unit (5) for easy transport.
On the back side we see in the upper area the air intake for the evaporator (6) with the filter grille (7) behind it. Further down, we see the exhaust air outlet (8) with a plug-in mechanism for the exhaust air hose. This leaves the air intake for the condenser (9), the power supply cable (10) and the drain hole for the condensation water (11).
The control panel of the portable air conditioner has only 5 buttons, the on/standby button (1) for switching the unit on and off, a plus button (2) for increasing the temperature, a minus button for decreasing the temperature, a button for selecting the respective mode (4) and a button for adjusting the fan speed (5).
On the LED screen (6) you can see additional settings and symbols. These include icons for air conditioning, dehumidification and ventilation, but also icons for a set timer or alarm, the silent mode, the set temperature with the selected unit (°C or °F), the fan speed and the hour display of the timer.
The remote control has function keys similar to the control panel. In addition, there is a button for setting the ventilation angle for the supply air (10), a button for the silent mode (11), a button for programming the timer functions (14) and a button for the REAL FEEL mode (15). In contrast to the De’Longhi Pinguino PAC AN98 ECO there is no display on the remote control. I found this very useful with the Pinguino PAC AN98 ECO.
Installation and commissioning De’Longhi Pinguino PAC EX100 Silent
Attaching the window sealing
Before we start to assemble the De’Longhi Pinguino PAC EX100 Silent, it is important to attach the window seal* to the door, window or skylight. The window seal is supplied with an adhesive tape which is stuck into the window frame.
Here you find again a small overview for window sealings:
If you have successfully attached the tape to the window frame, the window seal can be attached to the frame. When the window is open and the window seal is closed, the entire installation looks like in the following picture.
Preparation of the air exhaust hose
In the next step we prepare the exhaust hose. To do this, we attach the hose adapters on both sides of the exhaust air hose so that one end can be attached directly to the portable air conditioner. If necessary, the other end can then be extended with another Air exhaust hose*.
Connected with another exhaust hose, the whole system looks like this:
Here you find again a small overview for air exhaust hoses:
Connection and commissioning of the portable air conditioner
Now we have prepared everything and can begin operating the portable air conditioner. To do this, connect one end of the exhaust hose to the portable air conditioner with a slight twisting motion. Hang the other end of the exhaust hose out of your window and then close the window seal with the zipper. You can now plug the power supply cable into a socket and the system is ready for work.
IMPORTANT: Note from the operating instructions: “After transport, wait at least 1 hour before switching the machine on again.
Integration into a Smart Home System
Since the De’Longhi Pinguino PAC EX100 Silent does not have its own smart home interface, I’m trying to find my own solution for the portable air conditioner. My idea is to integrate the portable air conditioner into my Homematic IP system and the Alexa voice control, so that I can switch the system on and off by voice command. A second example is to switch the system on automatically when a room temperature is exceeded. But for this a suitable room thermostat is needed.
At this point I would like to refer again to the note in the user manual: “Never turn off the air conditioner by only pulling the plug. Press the ON / OFF key and wait a few minutes before pulling the plug. In this manner, the appliance can perform the operating status checks.” Manual Page 20.
However, when I contacted De’Longhi I was assured that there should be no problems when using a smart plug. If you don’t have a Homematic IP system you can find some Smart Plugs here, which can also be controlled with Amazon Alexa* or the Google Assistant.
Example 1 – Controlling the portable air conditioner by voice command
In the first example I configured the Switching and metering socket of Homematic IP* in the Homematic IP system and gave it the title “Air conditioning”.
It is important here that the socket is added in the “Light and Lighting” section, since switching on and off by voice command with Alexa only works through it. Then add the device in the Amazon Alexa app and the portable air conditioner can be controlled by voice command.
With the voice command “Alexa, turn on air conditioning.” the smart plug goes on and the portable air conditioner starts to cool. The last operating state of the system is continued. In my case this was: Cooling the room temperature to 18° C, fan power level: 3. This works very well. It becomes more difficult when switching off.
With the voice command “Alexa, switch off air conditioner” the power supply is interrupted and the “air supply opening” remains open. When it is switched on again, it is first closed and it takes a few seconds before the system returns to its original operating state.
Example 2 – controlling the portable air conditioner by room temperature
In the second example I have extended the existing configuration. But for this you need the Homematic IP Wall thermostat*. If this is also integrated in the Homematic IP system, we can automate the Homematic IP components.
To do this, go to “More” in your Homematic IP App and select the menu item ” Automation”. Then add a new automation, name it and then you will get to the action menu for the new automation. The automation is based on the combination of a trigger (room temperature) and an action (switching the smart plug). Therefore, in the first step we select and define the trigger.
The temperature is involved, as this is the trigger. So we choose temperature and then we have to make a connection to a device that is able to measure the temperature. In our case it is the Homematic IP Wall Thermostat. In the next step, we select a temperature under “Value”, which executes a command if the temperature is greater or equal. I have entered 25.5 °C.
Afterwards we see the overview of the trigger:
- Trigger: Temperature,
- Reference: Wall thermostat
- Value: greater than or equal to 25.5 °C
In the next step we go back to the automation menu and select the item Action. Our goal is to switch on the portable air conditioner automatically with the smart plug. Therefore we select “Switching” as action. In the next step we have to select a reference again.
In our case, this is the Smart Plug with the designation “air conditioning”. Then we enter a value and a duration. In our case one hour. Then we see the overview of the action:
- Action: Switching
- Reference: Smart Plug “air conditioning”
- Value: on, duty cycle one hour
In the last step you can see the overview of the automation again, which can be read as follows: If room temperature is 25.5 °C or higher, switch on “air conditioning” for one hour. IMPORTANT: Do not forget to save!
Conclusion: integrate the De’Longhi Pinguino PAC EX100 Silent into a smart home system
The integration of the portable air conditioner into a smart home system is possible in itself. The control by voice command with Alexa worked very well and switching on by exceeding the temperature also worked. However, the control via temperature exceeding is not optimal, so I will think about this a bit more.Even if my solution is not perfect, there is the possibility to integrate the De’Longhi Pinguino PAC EX100 Silent into a smart home system. However, a De’Longhi in-house interface would be the more elegant solution. Furthermore, I’m not sure whether disconnecting the power supply directly with a Smart Plug could cause damage to the portable air conditioner.
Until then it probably seems to be better to use the built-in timer for scheduling and use the remote control of the device.
Usability and features
The operation of the portable air conditioner De’Longhi Pinguino PAC EX100 Silent is in itself very simple. You switch the unit on and it starts cooling immediately. It is possible to set different temperatures from 18 °C – 32 °C. However, this is the supply air temperature and not the desired room temperature. Furthermore, there are four fan levels (1-3 and automatic) and a timer function
However, there is no real time program for the timer function as you are used to with smart radiator thermostats. There are only two ways to control the device by time:
- In standby mode: In how many hours the device should switch on: 0,5 – 24h
- In operation: In how many hours should the device switch off: 0,5 – 24h
One function I have hardly ever used is the Real Feel mode. The Real Feel technology is designed to create an ideal indoor climate with optimal temperature and humidity. Here are 3 states::
- Orange light: room climate not optimal – no feel-good conditions
- Green light: room climate satisfying – OK for most people
- Blue light: Optimal room climate
Since the portable air conditioner has a relatively high power consumption, I only use it when I really need to cool down. The Real Feel mode was therefore only rarely used and is in my opinion not suitable for occasional cooling but rather for a permanent installation where the device is constantly switched on.
Energy consumption and energy costs
In this context I would like to come to the energy consumption of the portable air conditioner. Even though the energy efficiency class is A++, the device has a comparatively high input of power and thus a high energy consumption. You can assume that this will be noticeable in the electricity bill. I measured the energy consumption for one hour and came to 0.647 kWh. According to the energy efficiency label, this is 0.7 kWh and corresponds to my measurement.
With an electricity price of approx. 29 cents/kWh (Germany August 2020) we have energy costs of approx. 18.7 cents per hour. Since the air conditioner must run at least 6 – 8 hours on very hot days to have a benefit, we come to energy costs of about 1.10 Euro – 1.50 Euro per day.
Noise level of the portable air conditioner
First of all, when buying a portable air conditioner, you have to be aware that it is a technical device that is intended to condition a large area and therefore cannot be compared to a television, a refrigerator or a fan. As a result, you have to live with a loss of comfort in terms of volume. Even though the De’Longhi Pinguino PAC EX100 Silent bears the word “Silent” in its name, the noise level should not be underestimated.
I have roughly measured the sound pressure level with my smartphone and an app. This is not an accurate measurement, but it helps to get a first reference value. When measuring the sound pressure level I came to the following values:
- Normal mode: Directly at the device: 56.6 dB (spl), 1 meter away from the device: 48.3 dB (spl)
- Silent mode: Directly on the device: 52.4 dB (spl), 1 meter away from the device: 46,3 dB (spl)
In the sound level table of acoustic-glossary.co.uk the following values are given:
- 40 dB: “Library”
- 60 dB: “Talking”
- 80 dB: “Street Traffic”
You can certainly argue about the categorization of the sound levels because I think the portable air conditioner is quite loud with up to 56.6 dB (spl) and I wouldn’t let it run at night.
The control behavior of the De’Longhi Pinguino PAC EX100 Silent is the subject of controversy on the Internet and there are many comments that put the portable air conditioner in a bad light.
Therefore, in this section I would like to give you a little basic understanding of air conditioning with a portable air conditioner and some hints on how air conditioning works best. For this purpose I will show you two scenarios that I have played through.
Scenario 1: Impossible to air-condition
I come home to my attic apartment on a hot summer’s day with an outside temperature of 32 °C and bright sunshine 5:00 p.m. The temperature in the rooms is unbearable at 35 °C and I want to reduce the temperature in the living room to 26 °C. Is this possible with the portable air conditioner?
No, it’s not. But there are simple reasons for this. The sun has heated up the rooms so much during the day that the building components of the apartment have stored a large amount of heat and this heat must also be removed by the portable air conditioner. For this, however the device is not designed and suitable.
The result of air conditioning for 2 hours at the highest level and a set supply air temperature of 18 °C is the reduction of the room temperature to 32 °C. Not really satisfying, but the blame is not on the portable air conditioner.
Scenario 2: correct planning and correct air conditioning
I work from home and according to the weather forecast I know that it will be a hot day with 32 °C and bright sunshine. Overnight I had my windows open so the rooms could cool down. After I have made my coffee, my thermometer shows a room temperature of already 24 °C at 9:00 a.m. Is it still possible to provide adequate air conditioning in the living room with the De’Longhi Pinguino PAC EX100 Silent portable air conditioner?
Yes, it is. However, there are a few actions to be taken to achieve this: I immediately start lowering the shutters to the south side to create adequate shading. Then I close all windows and switch on the portable air conditioner: 18 °C and highest fan speed.
Around noon the outside temperature is 31 °C and my room temperature is 26 °C. Around 5:00 p.m. I check the outside temperature again and it is 33 °C. My room temperature is 27 °C and has a temperature difference of 6 Kelvin to the outside temperature. In my opinion, this is an excellent performance of the device.
Important knowledge for correct air conditioning
After playing through both scenarios and following some rules in the second scenario, I am really satisfied with the performance of the De’Longhi Pinguino PAC EX100 Silent. In this context I would like to emphasize once again that the temperature display on the portable air conditioner is perhaps a bit irritating. Please note that the display shows supply air temperature and not the target room temperature.
Cooling a room to 18 °C at high outside temperatures requires a great deal of technical effort, even with complex air conditioning systems. Therefore, the 27 °C at an outside temperature of 33 °C can be considered as a complete success.
In the following I would like to show you once again the most important rules for proper air conditioning with a portable air conditioner:
- Close all windows so that as little warm outside air as possible can enter the building.
- Shadow windows facing south in order to reduce the exposure to sunlight (so-called solar gains) as much as possible. Simple rollo blinds* can make a big difference here.
- Start air conditioning in the morning and let it run for a longer period of about 6 – 8 hours.
- Take advantage of the cold night hours and open the windows of your apartment or house so that the rooms can cool down overnight.
If you follow these rules, a portable air conditioner can really help cool you down on hot days.
What I particularly like about the De’Longhi Pinguino PAC EX100 Silent is the control behavior of the system at outside temperatures above 32 °C. However, the 4 rules for air conditioning (close windows, shade, ventilate at night and switch the system on early) must be observed. By following these rules, I was able to cool my attic apartment to a comfortable temperature. I can therefore recommend the De’Longhi Pinguino PAC EX100 Silent with a clear conscience.
Another advantage is, even though the power consumption is quite high with a maximum of 0.7 kW, the energy efficiency class of A++. Other devices in this class and with only a little more cooling capacity consume well over twice as much electrical energy, which should definitely be more noticeable in your wallet. I am curious to see where the journey will take us and whether it is possible to reduce the power consumption even further while keeping the cooling capacity the same.
What I didn’t like that much is the missing smart home interface and the noise level of the device, which requires getting used to it. There is definitely room for improvement which should be used.
If you want to condition parts of your apartment or house with a simple solution, there is no way to avoid a portable air conditioner. The De’Longhi Pinguino PAC EX100 Silent cools the specified room volume down to pleasant temperatures without any problems and, with its energy efficiency class A++, results in reasonable energy costs.
But again, on hot summer days, the rooms that need to be air-conditioned must be shaded, the windows must be closed and the system must run continuously over a long period of time. Then the system works without any problems.
I can recommend the De’Longhi Pinguino PAC EX100 Silent as a portable air conditioner with a clear conscience. Nevertheless, it makes sense to take a look at less expensive devices, because the price of the De’Longhi Pinguino PAC EX100 Silent is quite high at just under €1,000 (as of August 2020) and is a real investment. Alternatively, the De’Longhi Pinguino PAC AN98 ECO or PAC EL98, which are available for just under half the price, are a good choice.
De'Longhi Pinguino PAC EX100 Silent
Offers for window sealing
Offers for exhaust air hoses
I hope this review has provided you with valuable information about the De’Longhi Pinguino PAC EX100 Silent and helped you with your purchase decision. If you have questions, suggestions or criticism, please use the comment function.
Best regards! Martin
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* Affiliate Links / Last updated prices on 2020-11-29 / Picture source: Amazon affiliate program