How to install a swamp cooler

How to install a swamp cooler

Evaporative cooling works through heat absorption by moisture evaporation. The cooler pulls the outside air into special pads soaked with water. This air is then cooled by evaporation and then circulated into the house or office space.

Most swamp coolers are mounted on the roof having a blower pushing the air through a down-discharge cooler. A rooftop installation is cheaper than the other installations but there are problems with rooftop installations such as:

Deterioration of the roof (coolers tend to leak over time)
Having to get on the roof to maintain it
Deterioration of the framework for supporting the cooler if wood is used

Ground-mounted or wall mounted can have similar problems, but not as detrimental.

Installation procedures for rooftop mounting:

First check with your city for any building codes you will have to comply with and then determine the location of the cooler. Once you have the location determined measure and mark the opening. Next, construct a platform out of wood or angle iron to support the cooler. Now attach the platform to the roof and cut the opening with a reciprocating saw.

Make sure you have checked carefully the area you are cutting so as to not cut any structural framework. The opening size will be determined by the instructions that come with your cooler. Make sure the cooler is in line with the ductwork also and then install flashing and seal the area around the ductwork.

Now it is time to mount the cooler on the platform. Depending on the size of your cooler you may have to rent equipment to lift the cooler into place. Larger coolers are rather heavy and awkward to manipulate even with a few healthy guys. Follow all instructions coming with your cooler as to the type of spacers used between the platform and cooler. In some instances, you might want to support the unit with guy wires if you live in an area that receives very high winds.

Follow the cooler instructions as to the size of water tubing needed also and connect the tubing to the water supply line using a saddle valve. Next, connect your electrical wires to the power box using the proper conduit and connectors. Check with your city also to make sure you can make the electrical connections your self or if you have to hire an electrician. All cities have specific codes for wiring and some things can be done by the homeowner while other things cannot.

If your cooler is new you will have to attach the motor to the mount. Once the motor is attached you will have to adjust the belt tension. If your unit is used most likely the motor is already attached and a simple adjustment to the belt is all that would be necessary. Now it is time to connect the ductwork and install the vents and vent covers in the rooms.

Once all the vents are in and ductwork is hooked up go over a final check making sure ductwork is installed properly, and all vents and dampers are open. Check to make sure the electrical is installed properly and then turn on the power to check the blower and pump motors.

Now it is time to turn on the water and make any adjustments to the float valve that is necessary and set the water level. The water should be at least 2 to 3 inches deep. Make sure all the distribution tubes are working properly. Once this is done adjust the dampers and vents for the desired airflow into space.

For mounting on the ground or wall the same basic instructions are followed as with the rooftop mount.

For mounting

Leave a Comment