questionswhere is a good deal on a swamp cooler that…

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I guess my first question would be, do you live somewhere dry? If not, you're better off with an AC unit. Window mounted ones are pretty cheap and easy to install. I assume you've got windows even though you're somewhat underground.

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I live in Colorado, and it gets pretty dry here. Even though we've been having thunderstorms, the air here stays dry and I end up with seasonal allergies due to dust and such.

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@bluejester: It's dry, there, but not dry enough. I also think that it needs to be on the roof.

I only see swamp coolers work well in areas where it's genuine desert. I used to live in Palm Springs, and I had a swamp cooler. It cooled the house down to 90 (when it was 120 outside). The humidity was (in those years) around 8-13%, so it was pretty effective. My mother had one installed in her house in UT (SLC area), and it was very efficient.

I don't think those window unit swamp coolers work well, or even at all. I'm with the "just get an air conditioner" voters.

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Had a swamp cooler when I lived in Clovis, New Mexico and Clearfield, Utah. Both worked very well. They were, however, roof mounted units.

On thing to remember, they work best if a window is left open a bit at the extreme ends of the home. Just pushes the air on through.

No experience with window mounted swamp coolers.

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I can't even imagine needing a humidifier. I live in the swamp. It can only be cooled by an A/C. Good luck with this. Had to read the posts just to figure out what a swamp cooler is!

P.S. - I don't actually live IN the swamp, but I do live NEAR the swamp.

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Ok so I have lived in the desert my whole life, and been around swamp coolers the same amount of time.

Look at this chart...

You REALLY NEED it to be DRY in order for a swamp cooler to work.

I have a swamp cooler in my garage (and regular AC for the house)
In Vegas it gets 115-120 and I can get my garage down to 78-80, but that is because our humidity is ~7%

So look at your average humidity and figure if it is worth it.

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@spacezorro: Cool find on the chart, that helps quite a bit actually. Thanks! =)

As far as getting an AC goes, can't really because the size needed would be impractical for the apt I live in. I have small ones for the bedrooms, but the main room and kitchen would need one that would eat up a lot of room.

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@belyndag: You're not alone. I'd never heard of "swamp coolers" and thought it was either a joke or some kind of localized slang. (I've lived in Florida since 1959.)

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@bluejester: Most people that love evaporative "swamp" coolers have roof or outside wall mounted units.

This is because the cooler takes the dry air from the outside, cools it (humidifying it in the process), and pushes it into your house. Leaving a window open, or having a one way vent lets old (humidified) air out. This vent+swamp cooler system works very good, and does not raise the humidity in your house.

The problem with house mounted swamp coolers comes when you do not vent your house. this concentrates the humidity, and lowers the amount air through that can go through the cooler (because of the pressure in your unvented house). AKA not good.

There is also a problem with "portable swamp coolers" because they are not pulling fresh dry air in to cool, and venting the old humidified air back outside.. they slowly increase the humidity in your house... Slowly decreasing the effectiveness of the cooler. (remember the chart). This is when people complain "swamp coolers suck"

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@bluejester: If you do get an evaporative cooler, make sure to keep the evap pads clean, as they are prone to mold and such which could bother your allergies. It is as simple as regularly adding a little bleach to the water that is pumped to drip on the pads. But I too think your humidity is so high as to render an evap cooler ineffective. If refrigeratrion really isn't an option, could you use fans? Maybe a ceiling fan and also a scoop fan near the ceiling to take out hotter air, or a simple inline fan in a window to improve circulation...

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I live in the desert so my swamp cooler is very effective. We've had a week of temps in the 100's (110 on Thursday) and I don't turn it on till I get home at 6:30, by 9 it is a bit too cool for me. I have to choose between getting up and down all night turning it off when I get too cold and on when I get too hot, or running it all night and putting a blanket on the bed, which is kind of absurd. The downstairs part of my split level house doesn't enjoy central air, so I put a small window mounted refrigerated air unit in the game room. It doesn't push air out well, so I mounted a tiny desk fan beside it at an angle and a ceiling fan to improve the circulation. That system works very well for cooling a 17x17 room. We'd tried one of those portable swamp coolers in that space and it was ineffective.

For those in the dark about swamp coolers, they cost maybe 25% as much to install and run as refrigerated air, and produce a more natural feeling coolness.

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@ojulius: Thanks but that device is for portable heaters and coolers. It appears to be just like a lamp timer, only using a thermometer instead of a timer. The swamp cooler is on the roof. But you know what? My friend gave me a programmable thermostat for Christmas with the promise he would install it. I had forgotten all about it! I will have to ask him about it. It was supposed to be for the heater. It's one that you can turn on with a smart phone, the idea was that I could turn it on half an hour before going home and come home to a warm house in the winter. The swamp cooler turns on and off with a light switch, the power connection is on the roof, so I don't think a thermostat like this will work.

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@moondrake: I don't see why it couldn't be tied into the wiring at the switch. If your friend is adept at wiring he should be able to do it that way. The thermostat that I posted a link to could replace the switch.