Four Things to Consider When Buying an Evaporative Cooler

Keeping your environment cool and comfortable during warm summer months can be a frustrating and often expensive task, to say the least. Evaporative coolers – also known as swamp coolers – offer an eco-friendly, healthy, and cost-effective alternative to traditional air conditioning systems.

However, there are a few things you should consider before purchasing an evaporative or swamp cooler.

  1. Would an evaporative cooler be effective in my environment?

Evaporative Cooling is a cost-effective and simple method for cooling both indoor and outdoor spaces. Depending upon the climate where you reside, evaporative cooling could be a very cost effective option for you. To make the correct decision, you must understand how evaporative cooling works.

Evaporative Cooling is a naturally occurring process; when you emerge from a cold pool on a hot day and feel a chill. As the dry air passes over water it causes a cooling effect and absorbs some of the water. This absorption occurs when the temperature and vapor pressure of the water attempt to equalize with the air. As a result, water molecules turn into gas molecules and heat switches from the higher air temperature to the lower water temperature. Since the air circulates naturally, the area around it is cooled.

Evaporative Coolers use this natural phenomenon to cool your environment, using a fan system that brings in stale, warm air where it passes through pads that have been moistened with water. The hot air is cooled to up to 20 degrees, cleaned and circulated back into the outside environment. Because the cool air circulates continuously and creates a breeze, the ambient temperature can feel significantly lower than the actual temperature.

The key to effectively cooling your home with an evaporative cooler is hot, dry air such as what is found in desert areas like the southwestern United States. In fact, evaporative coolers are most effective during the hottest times of the day and when humidity levels are below 50%.

  1. How do evaporative coolers compare with traditional air conditioning?

Evaporative Coolers, swamp coolers, are available at a lower cost, more energy efficient and are significantly more environmentally friendly than traditional air conditioning systems. Evaporative Coolers are available in a variety of designs, ranging from a portable swamp cooler that can easily be transported from environment to environment to a window mounted cooler that maximizes the use of your space while still providing a significant amount of cooling power.

When used indoors, this simple technology is far more energy efficient than traditional systems. Relative to evaporative cooling systems, refrigerated cooling systems (which are typically used in traditional cooling systems) cost up to 50% more than evaporative cooling systems. For examples, a 36-inch evaporative cooler operating for eight hours typically costs less than one dollar which is nearly three times cheaper than traditional cooling systems.

For environmentally conscious consumers, swamp coolers are the more environmentally safe choice. Unlike traditional refrigerated cooling systems, swamp coolers use a natural process to cool the air. This process doesn’t add ozone-harming pollutants or other chemicals that are harmful to the environment.

In addition to the environmental benefits, evaporative coolers provide many health benefits as well. Swamp Coolers operate more efficiently when fresh air is available by constantly circulating air through the unit. This constant circulation continuously cleans the air, providing consistent fresh and clean air which traditional air conditioners just don’t do. The evaporative cooling process also naturally humidified dry air which reduces dry air symptoms such as itchy eyes, throat or skin.

  1. What size evaporative swamp cooler will be most effective for my space?

For the optimal results, make sure that you’ve chosen the right cooler for your needs. It should be the correct size for the environment that you intend to cool. If the cooler you’ve chosen is too small, it will have to work even harder to cool your space therefore wasting energy. Pay attention to the CFM (Cubic Feet per Minute) of the unit. This specification notes the amount of fresh air cycled through your space each minute.

  1. Are there different types of swamp coolers?

Typically, there are two types of swamp coolers: residential coolers, portable and window mounted which are all designed to cool both large and small spaces. If you need something with more mobility, a mobile evaporative cooler is a great option. Portable evaporative coolers are typically equipped with casters that make moving from space to space simple and easy. However, lightweight coolers such as this tend to be better suited for personal cooling rather than more industrial purposes. For spaces that call for more cooling power, regard the CFM and choose one that’s higher.

If your cooling problems are localized to a certain indoor area, a window swamp cooler is a great energy-efficient alternative to a window unit. These window-mounted swamp coolers often come ready to install and include all necessary hardware. Many models can be installed easily in both vertical and horizontal windows.

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