A common alternative to a traditional air conditioning system, an evaporative cooler, also known as a swamp cooler, is highly energy-efficient and particularly suitable for dry climates such as El Paso, TX. As opposed to using refrigerant to cool the air, the evaporative cooler is a device that works by evaporating water. When there is an issue, signs may manifest that indicate you need repairs and we at Rush Maintenance Heating and Cooling would like to share the most common warning signs today.
Swamp Cooler Stuck on Low & Other Signs of Evaporative Cooler Problems
1) Evaporative cooler does not turn on. Many times, the unit will not start because the breaker was tripped. First check the breaker. If it tripped, ensure it is flipped completely off and switched back on. Examine the fuse of the evaporative cooler if the breaker is not the issue. If the breaker was flipped, check the wiring for any signs of damage. If any is present call a professional for repairs. The unit frequently unit does not start because of a blown fuse. You may need to call in a pro of the fuse is blown.
2) Evaporative cooler smells like chemicals. Potentially caused by stagnant water or mildew, strange odors can emit from the unit. This is not a problem you want to ignore or procrastinate on for obvious reasons. A certified expert can properly diagnose the cause of the problem where the technicians can then decide on the best course of action, whether it be cleaning the evaporative cooler, changing out the water, or other remedies.
3) Swamp cooler not blowing cool air. A blockage in the exhaust ducts is the most likely culprit when their is improper airflow. In order to rectify the problem, a professional is needed. You can make sure there is a proper opening for the unit in the event the evaporative cooler does not have an exhaust. If you are unsure, you can call in a professional for assistance. Generally, an opening of about two square foot for every 1,000 cubic feet per minute (CFM) supplied by the unit is the manufacturers requirement for most evaporative coolers.
4) Swamp cooler leaks water. Another sign that the unit is in need of repairs is when water dripping from the cooler. There are quite a few reasons as to why the water may be dripping. However, it is commonly leaking because of improper storage of the cooling unit during the winter. During the off season, you need to ensure the evaporative cooler is properly stored. To winterize the unit before storage, ensure it is efficiently drained, the pads are removed, and the tank is thoroughly cleaned. While in storage, it should be kept in a well-covered area.
Evaporative Cooler Installation, Emergency Repair, Preventative Maintenance & More in Socorro, Horizon City, Canutillo, Clint, & Greater El Paso, Texas
When it comes to a faulty evaporative cooler, your experts at Rush Maintenance Heating and Cooling are readily available to provide top quality repair services to help you get your unit back up and running efficiently as quickly as possible and if it’s time to replace, we can outline more efficient and cost effective upgrades. Call us as soon as you start noticing any issues to prevent further damage.
Using the evaporation of water to provide cooling has been with us since ancient times. Beating the summer heat in places like Mesopotamia and Nile certainly had its adherents in the upper class. In ancient Egypt and Persia breezes blew from predominate directions. These were captured and sent through a chamber where there was water. As the water absorbs the heat from the air and evaporated, the air was cooled the breezes circulated it through the palaces.
Water Has a High Heat of Vaporization
Evaporative cooling runs from the use of misters to cool patios and porches, single room units to systems for the whole house. The fine water mist absorbs heat on evaporation and cools the air. Any breeze blowing through helps to circulate the air. Water has what is called a “high heat of evaporation”, meaning water absorbs relatively high amount of heat before evaporating. In farming communities that experience high heat, a noticeable drop in temperature is experienced as you pass by fields under irrigation. This is due to the evaporation of water. Plants, particularly trees as they transpire produce a cooling effect from the evaporation of water off the leaves. Trees not only provide shade but are nature’s evaporative cooling apparatus.
Evaporative Cooling System Design & Working Principal
In home evaporative systems the ‘swamp cooler’ draws air from the outside. Fiber pads hold water that is pumped to them. As the warm air is drawn through the pads it picks up water that evaporates cooling the air. The air is then ducted into the house. Evaporative coolers work good in high temperature, low humidity conditions. The lower the humidity the better, at a 100 °F (38 °C) and a relative humidity of 5% a drop in temperature to 71 °F (21.6 °C) can be expected. But at 50% humidity the drop will be only 12 °F (7 °C) to 88 degrees Fahrenheit (31 °C).
Evaporative Cooling Efficiency
Having only to run a relatively low amperage fan motor vs. compressors and fans, the evaporative cooler is very economical in comparison to the typical air conditioning or heat pump system. Misters can be adapted as a pre-cooler for your A/C and pre-cool air flowing through the condenser improving the efficiency of the air conditioner and lowering power consumption and are available in kit form. Commercial A/C equipment use pre-coolers as well.
Evaporative cooling works on high bulk airflow. In the US the unit used to measure airflow is CFM or cubic feet per minute. A 1500 square foot home with 8 foot ceiling needs to circulate 6,000 CFM for effective cooling. Many have ducts in the ceilings to promote circulation through the addict, cooling the addict as well, or simply crack open a window a bit.
Evaporative Cooler Installation, Emergency Repair, Preventative Maintenance & More in Greater El Paso, Texas
Some installations piggyback both A/C and evaporative systems to provide cooling in high humidity conditions.
With evaporative coolers the temperature will drop but interior humidity will rise. A two stage evaporative cooler recirculates the interior air through a heat exchanger serviced by the evaporative stage of the cooler. This allow for cool, but drier air in the interior of the home. A water pump and blower in the ‘wet stage’ operates the evaporative cycle, while the dry stage circulates interior air. The stages interact through the heat exchanger.
Economic cooling is the prime advantage of an evaporative cooler in low humid areas, and a possible consideration for new construction. Portable units are available to provide cooling on a room by room basis. Call the professionals at Rush Maintenance Heating & Cooling for consultation for all your air conditioning needs.
An old time joke was that a car air conditioner was either a 2/40 or a 4/40. That is two or four windows down at 40 mph so the sweat on your body would keep you cool. It actually works; just ask grandpa!
History of Evaporative Coolers
History tells us that evaporative cooling was used by the Ancient Egyptians; wet blankets were hung on the doorways and the servants (to mostly royalty) would fan across them and jugs of water. The hot air that passed over or through resulted in cool air! Then in the early history of America, around 1750, Benjamin Franklin was in Philadelphia on a 100 plus degree summer day, writing in just a shirt and light trousers. As he was miserably uncomfortable, he noticed that when he changed his shirt the dry one was hot and offered no real relief. He experimented with some ideas he had on seeking comfort in such conditions. What he concluded was that he was not being cooled by the hot air that blew through the windows, but it was the perspiration evaporating off his body that offered relief! He set up an experiment to prove his hypothesis, using a thermometer and spirits (alcohol) which evaporated quicker than water. By blowing air across the bulb he was able to have ice freeze on it; a chemical reaction on a molecular level. An evaporative cooler works by harnessing this chemical reaction!
Benefits to Evaporative Cooling
The use of evaporative coolers is cost effective (lots cheaper) and also environmentally friendly as it has no hydroflourocarbon emissions. Evaporative cooling uses water while refrigerated air conditioning uses refrigerant. The initial cost of evaporative cooling is about a quarter less than the cost of a refrigerated air system and the maintenance costs are lower too! So why doesn’t EVERYONE have evaporative coolers? If you live in the arid southwest like El Paso, evaporative coolers can be very effective and will add humidity to your home, but if you happen to live in high humid areas, evaporative coolers do not work. An evaporative cooler replaces the air in your home with cooler humidified air, where as the refrigerated air conditioner just produces cool air to be blown into your home and will remove the humidity. Evaporative Coolers are used in many residential, commercial and industrial settings because they are cost effective and provide excellent results. Industrial plants, commercial kitchens, dry cleaners, green houses, warehouses and repair garages use units especially designed for large areas. The oldest model of evaporative cooler is YOU! The human body sweats and the movement of air around you evaporates which cools you down. The human body is an amazingly efficient cooling machine!
Evaporative Coolers in El Paso, Texas
Rush Maintenance Heating and Cooling specializes in evaporative coolers, as well as other types of air conditioning and heating units. Serving El Paso and surrounding areas which is the perfect environment for evaporative cooling. In the heat of the summer, don’t sweat it out, call us for a free estimate. We are family owned and treat all our customers with a ‘cool’ head! Wishing all a happy, healthy and cool summer!