In this article, I answer the “burning” question: What is the best air conditioner remote replacement?
If your current portable or window AC came with a remote control or supports IR, you can leverage a new breed of smart AC controllers and apps that save you some serious coin off your electric bill. They also offer a ton of convenience and can keep you more comfortable than traditional air conditioner remotes.
Best of all? They work with nearly every major brand of air conditioner out there, including Carrier, Chigo, Daikin, Electrolux, Fujitsu, Friedrich, Frigidaire, Gree, Haier, Hisense, Hitachi, LG, Midea, Mitsubishi Electric, Pansonic, Rollicool, Samsung, TCL, Toshiba and more!
If you just want to know which best AC remote replacement is best: The best universal AC remote replacement is Sensibo Sky. Setup is super simple using your iOS/Android phone, the AC remote app itself is super intuitive, you can set schedules, it lets you control your AC using Alexa, Google Assistant and Siri, and it even has GeoLocation abilities.
Best Air Conditioner Remote Replacement: Quick Comparison Chart
You already know that my pick for best AC remote replacement is the Sensibo Sky but there are two other contenders out there too. In this post, I’ll walk you through all three.
But first, let’s start with a little comparison chart.
Here is a side-by-side comparison table showing the key features of the Sensibo vs Ceilo vs Ambi smart AC remote controllers.
Feeling Hot Hot Hot
Ole ole – ole ole / Ole ole – ole ole!
People in the party – hot hot hot.
They come to the party know what they got.
I’m hot — You’re hot — He’s hot — She’s hot.
(Real hot) — (Real hot) — (Real hot) — (Real hot).
Ha-ha-ha – Oh Lord!
How could I forget ole Buster?
Anyhow, with the way this summer has been going. I couldn’t think of a better way to start this post. It’s been hot. Real hot! And my older clunker of an AC has been running on overtime.
I’m not quite ready to bite the bullet and buy a smart AC just yet. So I started wondering if there was a decent app that would let me control my existing AC remotely.
Because I’m lazy for starters! So, I did a ton of research and learned that there are some great universal AC remote apps out there. They not only make it easy for you to control your AC but they can save you a ton of money on your electric bill to boot.
Keeping cool keeps good company too. A recent report from research firm Statistica shows air conditioner sales in the U.S. steadily increasing since 2010.
The Sensibo Sky AC remote can control window A/Cs, ductless min splits, and portable A/C units. The only catch for this and the other products here is that your existing AC must have a remote control. You can then control your AC from anyplace utilizing your iOS or Android enabled mobile device or via a Web application.
The company claims that Sensibo can help you save up to 40% on energy costs. Many customers who own this product swear by it. The “coolest” component of this controller is its GeoFencing ability. This component can be utilized to turn the AC on before you arrive home and turn it off when the last person leaves the house. You can also control your AC unit utilizing your voice with your decision of Amazon Alexa, Google Assistant, and even Apple Siri.
Video Review: Sensibo Sky
Thanks to Ariff Suffian for the helpful unboxing video and review:
Universal AC Remote App Pros
- Control AC from anywhere
- Seven-day scheduling and timers
- “Climate React” smart triggers
- Geofencing location based on/off: start automatically when returning home, turn off after the last person leaves home
- Monitors temperature and humidity levels
- Alexa, Google AND Apple Siri
- Available in two colors – Cloud White or Storm Gray
- Support for international AC models
Not So Cool Cons
- A few customers complain that the setup process could be easier
- No support for Apple Homekit yet
You can check to see whether you existing AC is compatible with Sensibo right here.
Where to Buy
👉You can see it and read the customer reviews over at Amazon here.
Cielo Breez Plus
The Cielo Breez Plus from Cielo will let you remotely control any standalone AC as including window, portable, mini-split units. Like Sensibo, Breeze requires that you AC has an existing infrared (IR) remote control. Oh, and it makes its initial connection through your wifi router so you will need to have existing wifi for setup.
What is great about the Breez is its flexibility in the ways you can control your AC. These include your iOS or Android device, Amazon Alexa, and Google Home. The device comes with all required accessories including the wall plate and even a free table stand if you prefer to place it on a desk or table. The app helps you create zones for efficient heating or cooling.
Video Review: Cielo Breez Plus
The company has a nice overview video and covers the general installation process here:
Universal AC Remote App Pros
- On-device controls for local control
- Set up weekly schedules
- The app displays a timeline of air conditioning actions
- Can control AC even without Wi-Fi [after set up is complete].
- Can set triggers based on temperature or humidity
- Dedicated support team available Monday-Friday 9am-9pm EST
Not So Cool Cons
- Requires an existing AC remote for set up
- Some customers have said the setup process could be a bit easier
You can see if your existing air conditioner is compatible with Cielo using the company’s Compatibility Checker.
Where To Buy
👉Check the latest price and read a nice colorful brochure on Amazon’s product page.
Out of the gate, let me start by saying if you have an LCD screen remote for your existing AC, then I like this controller from Ambi Climate the best. If you don’t have one, go with Sensibo Sky. Like the other controllers here, Ambi also works with Alexa and Google Home. If you have a preference for Apple’s Siri voice assistant (I prefer Alexa), then the company has you covered there too.
The controller also supports IFTTT & Geolocation services. Probably the most unique feature of the Ambi Climate Controller and app is that it learns based on your feedback. A feedback screen on the app lets you choose between Too Warm, Too Cool, Just Right, etc., so it will learn your preferences over time.
Video Review: Ambi Climate 2
- Works with Alexa, Siri and Google Home
- Integrates with IFTTT
- Works with both iOS and Android devices
- Compatible with most brands of AC
- 2-year manufacturer warranty is longer than other products here
- Requires an existing LCD screen AC remote in order to work; it will not work with traditional AC remotes.
Where To Buy
What About Logitech Harmony?
If you have visited this site before, you probably know what big fans we are of Logitech Harmony remotes.
While Harmony can be used to power on and off your AC, and even set schedules and control your AC via IFTTT, there are features of these controllers that make them better for AC control (like Geofencing).
However, the benefit of using Logitech Harmony to control your AC is that you can also use the remote to control your entertainment center and smart home stuff.
You can see if your AC unit is compatible with Harmony’s database of over 275,000 devices from 5,000 brands here.
Best Air Conditioner Remote Replacement – Your Turn
I hope you enjoyed reading my review of the three best air conditioner remote replacement apps you can get today.
What do you think about these smart AC controllers and apps? I did a ton of research and I ordered the Sensibo Sky.
Do you think that these devices can really save you up to 40% on your electric bill? 30%?
Please leave a comment below and let me know.
I will post a followup when I figure out how much I am saving at the end of next season.
And you knew I was going to do it, so enjoy!
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About the Author
Tim Brennan, Technical Writer & Blogger
Tim “Tec Timmy” Brennan is the founder of Writeinteractive, Inc., a technical writing consulting agency. He is a senior technical writer with over 20 years of experience writing for companies and organizations in and around Greater Boston, including GE and MIT. In addition to actively writing for www.oneSmartcrib.com a smart home blog, Tim is also a regular contributor over at UniversalRemoteReviews.com. Tim holds a BA in Journalism from Northeastern University. There is a strong chance that he is developing a crush on Amazon Alexa. Brennan is a father to two sons, an active blogger, a Star Wars nut, and loves a good taco🌮. He also knows most of the words to Hot, Hot, Hot.