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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Swamp coolers are pretty simple as far as I can tell. A pump sprays water along the pads and a fan blows the cool/humidified air into the house.

Pump seems to be working fine and pads are definitely wet. Air isn't even remotely cool. Any suggestions on where to begin troubleshooting? Pads/Float are new.
 

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Proud luddite
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I live in AZ and while we have AC now, I lived with swamp coolers for years and know them pretty well. I'm not sure where you are but around here, the humidity kicks up in July and August, rendering swamp coolers relatively ineffective. It's all about the dewpoint, which is determined by a combination of relative humidity and air temperature. When the humidity rises, so does the dewpoint and water won't evaporate as quickly as it does when the humidity is low. When water evaporates it cools the air around it, so swamp coolers work great when it's dry and not so great when it's humid. That's just the nature of the beast, and your cooler should return to normal in September when conditions dry up again.
 

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Adorable Furry Hombre
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azpeterb said:
I live in AZ and while we have AC now, I lived with swamp coolers for years and know them pretty well. I'm not sure where you are but around here, the humidity kicks up in July and August, rendering swamp coolers relatively ineffective. It's all about the dewpoint, which is determined by a combination of relative humidity and air temperature. When the humidity rises, so does the dewpoint and water won't evaporate as quickly as it does when the humidity is low. When water evaporates it cools the air around it, so swamp coolers work great when it's dry and not so great when it's humid. That's just the nature of the beast, and your cooler should return to normal in September when conditions dry up again.
This.
 

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Proud luddite
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The beauty of swamp coolers is that they cost a fraction to operate compared to the electricity required by an AC system. I like to keep our house cool in the summer (about 1300 square feet, single story) so I keep the AC at 75. Just got our last electric bill.....$350!!! If we had used the swamp cooler it would have been maybe $100....but then we'd be sweltering because the cooler doesn't do diddly this time of year. So it's a tradeoff, but I'm willing to pay more to be comfortable. I'll just send my kid to community college instead of the university in the Fall.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Denver, CO. Humidity ain't much of an issue around here. My swamp cooler works great a few blocks away from my friend's place. It is her cooler that is having the issue.
 

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No hero that's understood
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Sorry, just reread you op. The air coming out of a swamp cooler isn't really cool, just wet. The cooling takes place when the water evaporates. Not sure if this helps any, but there are really only four parts, water, pumps, pads and fan. Perhaps the fan is not powerful enough for the new pads?
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
q_and_a said:
Sorry, just reread you op. The air coming out of a swamp cooler isn't really cool, just wet. The cooling takes place when the water evaporates. Not sure if this helps any, but there are really only four parts, water, pumps, pads and fan. Perhaps the fan is not powerful enough for the new pads?
Old pads were the "bamboo" or whatever type pads. New ones are blue synthetic material. You might be onto something there. Guy who sold them to us said to oversize them as they will shrink. So they aren't sitting flush (kind of bunched up in places). Could this be the issue?
 

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Seat's not level
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FrontRanger said:
Old pads were the "bamboo" or whatever type pads. New ones are blue synthetic material. You might be onto something there. Guy who sold them to us said to oversize them as they will shrink. So they aren't sitting flush (kind of bunched up in places). Could this be the issue?
That probably is the issue. If the air can go around the filter it will. If it goes around the filter it will not get wet and won't provide any cooling. At that point you are literally just blowing hot air.
 

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turtle killer.
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Also check and make sure that the aspen in the pads is actually wet.. if the spiders are clogged, or the drip holes are clogged it brings forth the suck.
 

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No hero that's understood
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When I lived in Arizona, my then girlfriend, now wife, had an evap cooler. I had to fix it for her once, but that was a broken pump.

She will tell you that the only reason she married me was because I had A/C.

Swamp coolers in dry temperate places sound like a good idea. Swamp coolers in Arizona seemed to be a pretty bad idea.
 

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turtle killer.
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Still only have swamps.. Not really much of an issue, would AC be nice for about 6 weeks? Sure. Necessary? Not one bit ;)
 

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azpeterb said:
I live in AZ and while we have AC now, I lived with swamp coolers for years and know them pretty well. I'm not sure where you are but around here, the humidity kicks up in July and August, rendering swamp coolers relatively ineffective. It's all about the dewpoint, which is determined by a combination of relative humidity and air temperature. When the humidity rises, so does the dewpoint and water won't evaporate as quickly as it does when the humidity is low. When water evaporates it cools the air around it, so swamp coolers work great when it's dry and not so great when it's humid. That's just the nature of the beast, and your cooler should return to normal in September when conditions dry up again.

Yep, what he said. Swamp cooler are still popular here in AZ mostly for garages. No good in humidity though.
 

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Spicy Dumpling
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We lived in Northern Az and up there all you really needed was a swamp cooler. Almost always dry and never really got much above about 90. I still remember the yearly clean the drip holes and pads ritual because of the hard water.
 

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Anything over 40 percent humidity and your little swamp cooler is perfectly worthless.
 

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My Own Private Idaho said:
The pads must fit. If the pad is too small the air will just go around, and you won't get any cooling.
That's a lot of kode for this late in the day...:thumbsup:
 

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swamp coolers remind me of my youth growing up in the desert in far west TX...

ahhhh, the sweet smell of brand new pads always marked the end of school and the start of summer vacation...yay!

on my 13th birthday, as a newly-minted teenager, my dad 'allowed' me to prepare the swampie by myself. scrape the pan, coat with nasty tar stuff, tear off the old pads, put on the new ones, and paint the outside with super-duty aluminum paint. damn, it made me feel all grown up and responsible.

humidity was near zero in those days and the air from the a/c could make the house frigid after an hour or so.

but, the humidity has steadily increased over the years and the old swamper has been replaced with refrigerated air. bummer.
 
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