Evaporative coolers have many benefits, and most of those benefits are environmental!
Traditional air conditioning requires the use of chemical refrigerants. These refrigerants are trapped the air conditioner in chiller pipes. Outside air passes into the air conditioner and over the chiller pipes, cooling the air and removing its moisture before pumping the dry, cool air into the home. Chemical refrigerants are bad news for the environment because when they are broken they release chlorine atoms into the air. These chlorine atoms can destroy ozone molecules. Ozone is the Earth’s most powerful protection from the sun’s radiation.
Evaporative coolers use the natural process of water evaporation to cool the surrounding air. Evaporative coolers have the addition of a fan to circulate the humidity and cooler temperatures throughout the home. This simple principle uses no chemical refrigerants in the cooling process.
Evaporative coolers also use less electricity to operate than traditional air conditioning, significantly less electricity. Evaporative coolers use about a third of the electricity as air conditioning. That is not only a significant cost savings on utility bills each month, but add up the kilowatts of electricity saved over months and years, and the reduction in power demands becomes significant. This electrical saving is profound enough that some electrical power companies offer their customers rebates for using evaporative cooling. That is money back simply for using a system that places less demand upon the power grid.
It’s not just electricity that you’ll save with an evaporative cooler. The simple addition of a purge pump to an evaporative cooler can help save the water used to run the unit. Evaporative coolers use water in their operation, but that water need not be a burden on the utility companies either. By installing a purge pump on the unit, this effectively closes off the system except at timed intervals. The purge pump brings new water into the unit at pre-programmed times. The water inside of the evaporative cooler is first pumped from the unit, allowing the fresh water to flow in to the perfect level, before being turned off.
TIP: Pumping fresh water into the cooler can significantly extend the life of the unit’s media pads, also saving on resources.
The water that is purged from the unit passes through a hose, allowing it to easily be used in the lawn or saved for later use in watering the lawn or watering garden areas. But even if you’re not using a purge pump, the amount of water that is utilized in electrical power production is higher than the amount of water that would be used by the evaporative cooling system. The significant reduction of electrical demand on the evaporative cooling system (verses other cooling systems) ends up indirectly saving water, too!
Evaporative cooling systems also thrive on fresh air. The home needs to have at least one (or more) doors/windows open while the unit is in operation. This brings a steady supply of fresh air into the home, which can help reduce buildup of indoor pollutants from things like household cleaners.
Don’t forget the reason for the evaporative cooler in the first place – cool, comfortable air. Keeping the home enjoyable, while saving on electricity and water usage, is a big win! Going green never felt so good.