How to Maintain an Evaporative Cooler

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Evaporative Cooler works on the simple phenomenon of the cooling effect when water evaporates. Warm dry air is passed over damp pads which evaporates the water thereby it cools the pads and the air which is then blown into the room. Evaporative Cooler is much simpler device as compared to an air conditioner. The parts of an evaporative cooler are all designed to facilitate efficient evaporation of water. It main components are: The main electrical motor, motor pulley, blower pulley, V-belt, water pump and cooler pads all enclosed in a steel or aluminium enclosure.

Maintenance of the Evaporative Cooler

Evaporative coolers are mostly robust machines require very little maintenance. Basic cleaning of the key components will ensure for the long life of the equipment.

Preparation: Preparing the Evaporative Cooler summer start-up and shutting it down for the winter season is very important. To prepare Evaporative cooler for use during the warm months, change the moisture pads, clean the pump, and oil the motor (if necessary). To shut it down during the winter, drain any excess water from the cooler and water supply line, disconnect the water line, cover the cooler, and unplug it from the power supply, especially if it will not be used for an extended amount of time.

Damp Cloth: The outer housing of the portable swamp cooler should also be cleaned periodically with a damp cloth. When you have finished using your portable swamp cooler for the season, simply wipe it clean, drain the water tank, clean the filter and water curtain, and operate the fan-only function (if available) for 30 to 60 minutes to completely dry the device before storing.

Frequency: The filter and water curtains of the portable evaporative cooler should be cleaned once every 2 weeks with lukewarm water and a mild detergent to avoid dust, dirt, mould, and mildew build-up, especially if the device has been used for long periods of time.

Cooling pads: However, the main routine maintenance that is essential for Evaporative Cooler is the regular cleaning of the cooling pads. There are two main pad types:  rigid media pads and fibre pads. Fibre pads are usually the more inexpensive option of the two, but generally require more frequent cleaning and if necessary they have to be replaced if clogged excessively.  On the other hand rigid pads are more expensive, but can last for years and they just have to be cleaned with warm water and some mild detergent. They need not to be replaced frequently. Some paper and synthetic cooler pads can be cleaned with soap and water or a weak acid according to manufacturer's instructions. Filters should be cleaned when the pads are changed or cleaned. Be sure to disconnect the electricity to the unit before servicing it.

Ongoing work: Preventative maintenance includes regular draining and cleaning your Evaporative cooler so that any build-up of sediment is removed.  The more a cooler runs the more maintenance it will need. In hot climates where the cooler operates much of the time, look at the pads, filters, reservoir, v-belt, motor and pump at least once a month. Replace the pads at least twice during the cooling season, or as often as once a month during continuous operation.

V Belt: Check the fan V-belt to see if it has adequate tension. It shouldn’t move much more than an inch, and in some cases an inch may be too much. If it is visibly sagging then it definitely needs replacement. Lubricate the blower assembly bearing and the motor if it has an oil receptacle with the appropriate oil.

Noise: If there is excessive noise of the motor or blower or the machine fails to run at all, then it is prudent to call an electrical repairman.

In addition, Popular Evaporative Cooler Models can also be viewed by clicking on any of the images provided below…

Finally, it would be greatly appreciated by the community if you can share your own experiences of maintaining your own Evaporative Cooler by leaving a comment in the comment box below – So that the community can learn also!

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