Evaporative Cooler - water to the rescue
An evaporative cooler is a means of staying cool that you should consider. It helps you beat the heat and save money at the same time.
There are several approaches to using evaporative technology. All employ the same basic concept; evaporating water requires energy to do so, therefore the air used to evaporate the water is cooled in the process.
Air coming from these coolers is also damp as the evaporated water is suspended in the air.
I can't say that these appliances come in many styles and colors, but here is a look at the basic variations on the theme:
- You can get a whole house evaporative cooler that mounts on the roof and brings air in from outside and distributes it to a central location in the home. These are relatively common in smaller homes and house trailers.
- A window unit is designed to cool air in a large room of the house. They mount much like a window mounted air conditioner.
- There are also free-standing units that resemble a large box fan on a stand. They blow air like a fan and evaporate water from a small reservoir for cooling.
In any case, you need to live in an area where the relative humidity is low. Places in the west like Nevada, California, Wyoming and Utah are probably good candidates for cooling with these appliances. Areas of high humidity reduce the effectiveness of a cooler like this because there is already so much humidity in the air. Additional evaporation of moisture in a humid environment is difficult.
These type of coolers use water constantly, and they are susceptible to corrosion. It seems that nothing rusts faster that the metal enclosure of an evaporative cooler.
Water usage on these coolers isn't large, but it's constant. Corrosion limits the life of the coolers as they are in a constantly moist environment. Unless special materials are used in the design, corrosion leads to water leaks in the reservoir and that wastes water and limits the useful life of the cooler.
On the up side, this type of cooler is less expensive than air conditioners, of simple design and construction, and less costly to operate. They can cool your living space and help you save money on initial costs and recurring cost of operation.
An evaporative cooler typically has a reservoir in the form of a pan or tray, a simple float mechanism to regulate water level, a medium used to absorb and wick water so passing air can evaporate it, and a fan for moving air. If you must have cooler air, and you don't mind more humidity, then a device such as this could be a good energy saver for you.
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