Everything You Need to Know About a Portable Swamp Cooler
A portable swamp cooler is an appliance that cools the air in the area where it is installed by means of water evaporation. What makes these coolers attractive to many is they are economical, low maintenance and eco-friendly, hence many see them as an alternative or supplement for air conditioning systems. Aside from being easy to use, a cooler’s operating cost is lower compared to a central AC unit.
A Closer Look at How These Coolers Work
Before moving on, the following has to be cleared up first: a swamp air conditioner is most effective in dry hot climates with humidity at 50% or lower. So if you’re living in the Midwest or the Southwest, a cooler will come in handy. If you live in a place where there is more humidity, you’ll still be able to use a cooler, in particular the outdoors or the semi-outdoors. Aside from cooling a room, swamp cooler pumps can also be used in garages, kennels, construction sites, and even loading docks, pool areas, patios and other locations. No matter what type you buy, a cooler works the same way by evaporating water.
The stale, dry air is pulled and sent to a moistened cooling pad where the cooled water evaporates. Depending on the design and setting, a cooler will reduce the temperature by a few degrees or as much as 20 degrees.
Once the air is cooled it’s circulated around the room and produces a cool breeze. For the best results, your cooler must have a good supply of clean air from a door or window. When installing one of these units, keep in mind that they don’t work as well in enclosed areas.
The importance of fresh air cannot be emphasized enough because without it the humidity will go up, making the air feel clammy and damp. Although coolers have different designs, the majority have to be manually filled with water the same way as a humidifier. However, the newer models have a more convenient setup so filling is easier.
Coolers today are equipped with several features but only you can decide if they’re worth it. Multiple cooling systems for instance, provide you with greater control, while oscillating louvers allow you to send the air to where it is required. Digital controls are also becoming more common now and many consider them essential for ease of use.
How to Choose the Right Cooler Size:
Picking the right size is important when it comes to these appliances. While having a swamp cooler thermostat is important the size is even more so because if the unit is too small for the room you’re going to use it in, it’s not go to cool the air and will just use up power. On the other hand, an oversized cooler is a waste of money and energy.
To choose the right cooler you’ve got to get the right CFM rating or cubic feet per minute, which is the amount of air that goes through the cooler every minute. The higher the CFM rating the quicker it’s going to cool the air, but of course the other features of the unit have to be taken into consideration.
To calculate the CFM, just get your room’s cubic footage and divide it by 2. The formula is Square Footage X Ceiling Height = CFM. So if the room or area is 144 square feet and the ceiling is the standard 8 feet, you will get the following: 144 X 8 / 2 = 576 CFM. If you want the maximum cooling possible for the room, get a cooler with a CFM rating of 576. This doesn’t have to be exact of course, and it’s advisable to get a cooler that’s a bit larger than your requirements for optimum performance.
Here is a quick guide so you can find the ideal CFM for the room. These do not take into account the type of swamp cooler motors used, and it assumes that the ceiling is the standard 8 feet.
400 to 1,600 CFMs – up to 400 sq. ft.
1,800 to 3,600 CFMs – up to 900 sq. ft.
3,800 to 6,000 CFMs – up to 950 to 1500 sq. ft.
6,200 to 7,200 CFMs – 1,550 to 1,800 sq. ft.
7,400 CFMs and up – 1,850 sq. ft. and larger. If you’re going to buy one, you need to consider the ceiling especially if it’s higher than 8 feet. If the ceiling is higher you should get a cooler with a higher CFM. A higher CFM is also necessary if the room or area is directly exposed to sunlight. Also keep in mind that the measurements given here assume that only one person will be in the room: lf there’s another person who’s going to occupy the room you have to go with a higher CFM.
You also need to take into account the cooler’s capacity especially if the CFM rating isn’t given by the manufacturer. Water capacity is measured in gallons and provide you with a general idea of how big an area the cooler can cool. Portable cooling units have varying capacities, but as a general guide:
1 to 3 gallons: ideal for home offices, sitting rooms, bedrooms and kitchens
3 to 7 gallons: for living rooms, sun rooms and dens and other medium sized spots
7 to 12 gallons: for large bedrooms, cooling several rooms and a large living room
12 to 16 gallons: this is good enough for cooling patios, pool areas and large decks
16 gallons and above: this is for commercial and industrial applications like aircraft hangars, farming applications, restaurant decks, sports fields and manufacturing plants. Conclusion
Buying a portable swamp cooler is really no different from buying any other product in the sense you need to do some research to determine what is right for you. While it might take some time to compare these products, it’s going to make a difference later on, and you’ll be happy you took the time to learn how they work. It’s always good to consult your Local Air conditioning Specialist. Contact us @