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evaporative cooler thermostats

Using a Swamp Cooler Thermostat to Control a Swamp Cooler

If you have a swamp cooler in your house, you're knowledgeable about the balancing act of keeping the house cool. You've to focus on the temperature, monitor the fan speed, and open and close windows. Essentially, you're the thermostat.

It mustn't be this way! You can adjust the temperature in your house by installing an electronic swamp cooler thermostat.


How does a swamp cooler work?

swamp cooler thermostat

A traditional swamp cooler control requires you to manually turn the cooler on and off, set the pump to soak the pads, and adjust the fan speed. With this setup, you need to monitor the temperature. By way of instance, if it becomes too hot, you need to turn on the pump, then wait for it to wet the pads, and then turn the fan on. When it becomes too cool, you must turn it off or down.

A digital thermostat enables you to set the temperature where you want it. Then the swamp cooler automatically operates until it reaches the desired temperature. You need to choose whether you want the fan setting on low or high, but will automatically run the fan until it reaches that temperature.


Advantages of placing a swamp cooler thermostat

1. Increased comfort

Getting a thermostat to your swamp cooler practices the guesswork out of the temperature. You don't need to wait to be uncomfortable to adjust the cooler setting. It preserves your preferred temperature for you.

2. Timed delay

With a traditional controller, you want to turn the pump on and soak the swamp cooler's pads before turning on the fan. Leaving this step implies hot air blowing into the home for the first couple of minutes after turning on the cooler. The thermostat does this for you. It uses a timed delay, usually two to five minutes, where it automatically soaks the pads before turning the fan on. You no longer need to think about it.

3. Timer settings

Many swamp cooler thermostats include a timer. This enables you to place the cooler to operate for 2, 4, or 6 hours and then shut off. By way of instance, if you do not want it running all night, you can set it to shut off a couple of hours after you go to bed. You won't need to get up to turn it off because you are freezing.

4. Manual settings

You can yet regulate the swamp cooler if you so wish. The thermostat does not take away that function.


Limitations of a swamp cooler thermostat

There are several advantages to using a swamp cooler thermostat, though there are a couple of things to take into account before installing one.

1. It does not create your swamp cooler feel like fridge air

The fridge air feels quite different from air chilled with a swamp cooler. Even if your swamp cooler includes a thermostat, the comfort level is still influenced by humidity. The thermostat just regulates the temperature.

2. It runs on high voltage power

The thermostat employs a similar voltage of power to phone chargers and curling irons. Just a couple of swamp cooler manufacturers, namely MasterCool® and ArrowCool®, operate with low voltage. You will want to share this with your heating professional.


What about the airflow?

evaporative cooler thermostats

With a traditional swamp cooler installation, the outdoor air is drawn into the house and cooled using the swamp cooler. This chilled air is then dispersed through the port system. After the air enters the house, it builds up. This is known as positive air pressure.

If you're already knowledgeable about swamp coolers, you understand that the best way to release this air pressure would be to open doors and windows. The air then circulates back outside. When the cooler shut off, this creates negative air pressure, and the windows will need to be shut to keep the warm outside air from coming back in the house.

This is important because using a thermostat, you are not the one turning it off and on anymore. With the old setup, you opened the windows once you turned the cooler on and shut them once you turned it off. But how does this work now it is turning on and off alone?

Thankfully, you do not need to run and shut the windows each time the thermostat shuts off the cooler. There's a simple, innovative fix for the air pressure issue: barometric dampers and upward ducts. Here is how they work:

The barometric damper is a special vent installed in the ceiling of a room or several rooms in the home. How many you want and where to place them depends upon how air flows throughout your home. Your HVAC specialist can help you evaluate how many you need and where to place them.

The damper contains hinged flaps that open in the attic. After the thermostat turns the cooler on, the house fills with the chilled outside air. The home fills with this air, producing positive air pressure that forces against the coupled flaps. The flaps open and release the air into the attic, which then goes back outward through the gable vents. When the swamp cooler automatically switches off, negative air pressure is produced in the house, and the flaps in the damper close.

Some of the advantages include being able to leave your home with the cooler running and the windows shut. Additionally, it reduces the loft's temperature, so your swamp cooler does not have to work too hard, which may turn into utility bill savings!


What's the bottom line?

A swamp cooler thermostat can make life so much easier! Instead of this back and forth that involves turning it off and on and down and up, you can adjust the temperature where you want it. Stay comfortable and cool this summer!

About the Author Tom Hanson

I’ve worked as an HVAC tech in Phoenix, AZ for the past 10 years. I created CoolAndPortable.com to help home owners select the right portable air conditioner, cooler or air purifier for their needs & budget in just a few minutes.

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