Summers in India are uncomfortable at best, especially places in the South. Some areas can even heat up to 45 degrees (Celsius) so cooling your home or business is a must.
Rising temperatures can make having an air cooler more of a necessity than something luxurious or “extra” for the home.
When you consider what to buy, there are many factors to consider, and of course, you want to get value for your money. I already have an article discussing the best air coolers in India that you can take a look at.
For anyone who may not know what exactly an Air Cooler is, here’s the rundown:
Air Coolers actually cool the air. Most Air Coolers consist of three components, internal cooling pads that absorb and retain water, a fan, and a pump system to circulate the water.
The Air Cooler then uses evaporated water to operate. It draws water from the tank, soaks the cooling pads, filters hot air through them and cooling it, before returning it to the room. They are usually able to cool the room by two or three degrees, but in some cases, up to fifteen degrees.
Air Coolers are usually more cost effective than Air Conditioners. That begs the questions: What’s the difference? Which one should I buy?
Air Coolers vs. Air Conditioners
• Air Coolers are a little more budget friendly than Air Conditioners. There’s usually an affordable Air Cooler for everyone’s bank account. (You can get an one for around Rs. 7000, and Air Conditioners usually start around Rs. 30000)
• Air Coolers are easy to install, and they don’t require servicing like most Air Conditioners. They also don’t use as much powers as Air Conditioners. However, you do need to be aware that Air Coolers do require daily attention and weekly maintenance (filling water tank, and cleaning pads/fans)
- Most Air Coolers are portable, so you can move them to whatever room is hottest.
- Air Coolers are more eco-friendly than Air Conditioners, and don’t omit harmful gases.
- If you have an Asthmatic in your house, air coolers are better for them. As air coolers deliver fresh air to your room(s), using air from outside and cooling it down. Air Conditioners circulate internal air.
Types of Air Coolers:
Being familiar with the types of Air Coolers will help you choose what you need for your home or business.
The info below is general. Make sure you check the specific Air Cooler you’re considering to ensure it’s the right Air Cooler for you.
• Personal Air Cooler (also referred to as Room Air Coolers)
Generally used in households, because they’re ideal for small to mid-sized rooms. They’re usually portable (with built-in wheels or on a trolley) and the air is forced out by the fan in this style of Air Cooler. They’re less powerful than the other kind of Air Cooler, which is called the Desert Air cooler (we’ll cover that shortly).
Here’s a list of general specs:
- For small to mid-sized rooms
- Usually 20-30 Liter Water Tank Capacity
- Blowers/Fans for cooling
- Most economical (Prices start from around Rs. 7000)
• Desert Air Coolers
This style of Air Cooler is usually fixed to an outside window. It uses air from the outside, and the fan acts as an exhaust. This Air Cooler will require more power, but it can cool a larger area. It also needs more water and occupies more space compared to a Personal/Room Air Cooler. Here’s a list of general specs:
1. For medium to large sized rooms.
2. Usually 30-60 Liter Water Tank Capacity
3. Large Fans acts as Exhaust
4. Can be more of a cost (Prices start around Rs. 9000)
Some features to consider before buying
Of course, you have to check the specific Air Cooler you’re considering, but here are some common must-have features:
• Tank size—As mentioned above, the room you’re trying to cool may make this decision for you, but just remember, the bigger the tank, the less you have to fill it, and the longer the Air Cooler can operate without attention.
• Timer—If your choice of Air Cooler has a timer, you can set it and forget it! It will turn on or off when you specify.
• Speed Settings—This is something to consider as you shop around. The more settings it has, the more flexibility you have on how hard it blows.
• Remote Control—This is an excellent (and desired) feature! You don’t have to be close to change a setting, or turn your Air Cooler on, off, or change the Speed Settings.
Air Cooler Usage Tips
Hopefully knowing the types of Air Cooler will help you choose one, and the features will help you know what you want. Being hot is uncomfortable enough!
Here are some usage tips for your new Air Cooler:
- The size of the room you’re trying to cool is one factor that will help you know what you need. If you have a smaller space, you can purchase a Personal or Room Air Cooler, but if you’re trying to cool a larger room, you will need a Desert Air Cooler.
- Place the Air Cooler in front of an open window(s). The hotter the air, the faster the evaporation. The room needs to be well ventilated, pushing the humidity out.
The Air Cooler should not be in a closed off place/room. That’s a common misconception, and blocking the airflow inhibits the Air Cooler’s proper operation. Airflow is required for Air Coolers to work most efficiently.
- You can add ice to the water tank to increase the Air Cooler’s efficiency. Some Air Coolers even have special compartments for this purpose. The internal pads will get cooler faster as the ice melts.
- Too much ice can slow the evaporation process (which is how the Air Cooler cools) so be careful to follow recommendations in the manual.
- Make sure you keep the cooling pads clean for optimal performance. Since the Air Cooler is pulling air from the outside, the cooling pads collect pollen and dust over time, so they will need maintenance about once a week.
- Ensure the same maintenance is done for the water tank. It needs to be kept clean, and to be checked for leaks. It can be checked weekly, when the cooling pads are cleaned.
- The fan blades will also require frequent attention. If they’re clean, the Air Cooler can blow at its highest efficiency.
One last tip:
If the pump is permitted to run when the tank is being filled, it will offer almost instant cooling. When this is performed, the cooling pads soak up the water before the fan kicks on, so it takes less time for the water to evaporate.
Enjoy your new Air Cooler, and stay cool in the hot Indian summer!