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How to Use a Swamp Cooler to Cool Your Home


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For people who live in fairly arid climates, swamp coolers (a. k. a. evaporative coolers) are an efficient way to stay cool - and are less expensive top purchase and operate than air conditioners.

Dry air absorbs moisture through evaporation. If water is continuously evaporated into dry air, heat is absorbed and the temperature of the air is lowered. Swamp coolers take hot dry air, cool it by evaporating water into it, and circulate the cool air throughout a home.

Unlike air conditioners, when using swamp coolers the moist air must be able to escape through open windows. Windows are kept closed when using air conditioners to keep cool air inside, but open windows are essential when using swamp coolers.

After taking a shower, when you are still wet and exit the bathroom, you feel chilly due to the evaporation of water from your body. While you were still in the bathroom, you felt warm and damp because water could not evaporate as rapidly when the surrounding air was humid.

All swamp coolers work in the same basic way. Water is pumped onto spongy pads, hot dry air is blown through the pads and then the cool air leaves the swamp coolers. Swamp coolers use less energy than air conditioners because there are no energy hungry compressors. The only moving parts are a fan and a pump.

Increasing Swamp Cooler Efficiency and Lowering Energy Requirements.

  1. The first thing you need to do is install a swamp cooler. Swamp coolers come in all different shapes and sizes. Once you purchase a swamp cooler, make sure that you install it as per the manufacturer's recommendations.
  2. As previously mentioned, open a window. If the air indoors becomes too humid, the swamp cooler will not be able to evaporate water as rapidly and therefore will not be able too cool the area as efficiently.
  3. The warmer the surrounding air, the more water can be evaporated. The greater the difference in temperature between the cool water and the hot air, the more efficient your swamp cooler will be. So, don't try to cool your house just a degree or two. Wait until it is sufficiently hot (Usually mid-80s).
  4. Keep your evaporative pads clean. If they become clogged, they will not work efficiently. Impurities in pads will prevent the maximum amount of water from being evaporated and decrease the efficiency of swamp cooler.
  5. Do not run a swamp cooler and air conditioner at the same time. The two operate on almost opposite principles. This will prevent either from working efficiently. This is huge waste of energy and environmentally unfriendly.
  6. Finally, keep water in your swamp cooler. If the cooling pads become dried out, there will be no water to evaporate and no cooling will take place.
Follow these easy steps and you will efficiently cool your home during those dry summer months. You will also be doing your part in helping the environment by conserving energy and not using CFCs to cool your home.

Mike Culletto

Product Specialist

H-Mac Systems, Inc


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