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Air conditioning question for the scientists

 
 
Mame
 
Reply Wed 21 Jul, 2021 11:01 am
Air conditioners cost U.S. homeowners a total of about $29 billion per year, according to the Department of Energy. They also release about 117 million metric tons of carbon dioxide into the air on an annual basis.

https://realestate.usnews.com/real-estate/slideshows/6-alternatives-to-traditional-air-conditioning


I don't want to contribute to carbon dioxide emissions.

This article mentions an evaporative or swamp cooler:

Evaporative cooler or swamp cooler
In dry climates, an evaporative or swamp cooler is a common option. With a fan and water-soaked sponge or pad, air is blown by the fan through the pad, allowing the water-cooled air to blow into the room or the rest of the house. To cool the house and manage the temperature from room to room, you crack windows to allow the hot air to escape, leaving the cooled air.

Advantage: With a fan and small amount of water use while running, a swamp cooler is much cheaper to operate than refrigerant air conditioning. You’ll be pleased with lower utility bills.

Disadvantage: With water serving as a cooling factor, a swamp cooler, which is often installed on the roof, only works where humidity is low. For example, at 50% relative humidity, you’re able to achieve around a 10-degree difference. The more humid the air is, the less effectively you’re able to cool.

Cost: Home improvement network and information company Angi reports most swamp cooler installations cost between $1,402 and $3,454.

~~~

I'm in a town/province that is pretty dry (not much humidity).

Do you think this is a good way for me to go? I would just be doing the bedroom. My husband already has problems sleeping and with the current and expected heat waves, I'm trying to think of ways to cool the room down.

Thanks for any and all advice/opinions.
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Type: Discussion • Score: 3 • Views: 215 • Replies: 15
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edgarblythe
 
  1  
Reply Wed 21 Jul, 2021 11:06 am
I would consult local people first, but it could be right for you.
About 1971 I lived for a short time in a home with an attic fan. It kept us cool without A/C. I was not there long enough to know much about it.
0 Replies
 
roger
 
  1  
Reply Wed 21 Jul, 2021 11:15 am
@Mame,
I'm no scientists, but I do use a swamp cooler. They perform adequately if the humidity is low enough. You should keep in mind that they need to be drained before you start getting freezing temperatures, and that includes any exposed water lines. Also, replacing the pads will usually have to be done annually.

Of course, they don't release any carbon dioxide. That comes from the fuel used to generate the power if your power plant uses fossil fuels.
maxdancona
 
  1  
Reply Wed 21 Jul, 2021 11:38 am
@roger,
I am a scientist (at least by education), but I don't use a swamp cooler.

1) The issue here is energy usage. Neither air conditioners or "swamp coolers" emit any carbon dioxide on their own. The only carbon dioxide in question comes with your use of electricity. Of course, if you ware using wind based electricity, or solar power, or nuclear there will be no carbon dioxide generated for either type of cooling.

2) In Boston (where I live) a real air conditioner is very nice to have for the two or three weeks a year when things get oppressive. Air conditioners simply perform better than "swamp coolers" in their ability to cool and to remove humidity from the air.

3) My personal moral calculus is this... I have efficient air conditioners in two rooms of the house. We seal off the rest of the house. I have another portable air conditioner, but this is rarely used.

That way we have air conditioned comfort where we need it at a minimal cost.

If a "swamp cooler" works for you... then sure. It will use less energy.
0 Replies
 
Mame
 
  1  
Reply Wed 21 Jul, 2021 02:22 pm
Thank you everyone, including Max (just so you know I read your comments).
roger
 
  1  
Reply Wed 21 Jul, 2021 02:35 pm
@Mame,
One thing I forgot to mention: swamp cooler will increase your indoor humidity. Right now I show:

Inside humidity 51% Outside is 19%

Inside temperature 85f Outside is 98f.

This is fairly typical.
maxdancona
 
  1  
Reply Wed 21 Jul, 2021 02:39 pm
@Mame,
You are welcome Mame. If you have a question on a topic where I have some expertise (such as the science of air conditioning) I am happy to help.
0 Replies
 
maxdancona
 
  1  
Reply Wed 21 Jul, 2021 02:48 pm
@roger,
Does that feel comfortable, Roger?

I tend to be unhappy with a dew point above 60F (and if I calculate correctly you are at 64F).
InfraBlue
 
  1  
Reply Wed 21 Jul, 2021 02:57 pm
Evaporative coolers loose effectiveness above 35% humidity. We have both an evaporative cooler and an AC. We run the AC during monsoon season when the humidity gets above 35% and the heat is in the triple digits. This monsoon season we've had a lot of rain which has kept temps below 100. We'll switch on the cooler at night when the heat and humidity go down. Last night the indoor temperature was 71°. That's kinda chilly.
roger
 
  1  
Reply Wed 21 Jul, 2021 03:09 pm
@maxdancona,
Comfortable? Well, better than nothing. At our altitude and air quality, outside air temps will drop from 30 - 40f overnight. The cooler will be off starting around sundown. The house will stay comfortable till at least 10a.m.

I'm just sharing experience here, not making a recommendation.
0 Replies
 
Mame
 
  1  
Reply Wed 21 Jul, 2021 05:32 pm
@InfraBlue,
InfraBlue wrote:

Last night the indoor temperature was 71°. That's kinda chilly.


71 is chilly? LOL We love it at that temp, esp at night!
Mame
 
  1  
Reply Wed 21 Jul, 2021 09:57 pm
@roger,
that actually might work since Alex has about 90 acoustic guitars and we have two indoor humidifiers ... I think I'll look at what you have, rog.
roger
 
  1  
Reply Wed 21 Jul, 2021 10:10 pm
@Mame,
Great. You can probably scrap at least one humidifier.
Mame
 
  1  
Reply Fri 23 Jul, 2021 11:56 am
@roger,
Just spoke with the manager of a highly recommended air conditioning company and, like my friend here JoeBlow, he recommended a window unit. He's researching them for me now.

This fellow went through the pros and cons of all the options (mini split, portable, etc). The room has 3 outside walls and an attic.

The whole house is fine (open concept, no doors), it's just the bedroom on the top floor that needs attention. I would love to have this installed before Alex returns as a surprise.
edgarblythe
 
  1  
Reply Fri 23 Jul, 2021 12:04 pm
@Mame,
Window units are quick and easy. I wasn't sold on the swamp cooler.
0 Replies
 
Mame
 
  1  
Reply Fri 23 Jul, 2021 12:18 pm
@Mame,
Mame wrote:

InfraBlue wrote:

Last night the indoor temperature was 71°. That's kinda chilly.


71 is chilly? LOL We love it at that temp, esp at night!


I went into the swimming pool in Tempe, AZ when it was 72F and everyone was all bundled up Smile They said, "You must be Canadian". Just what you get used to. We had a cold snap here for 10 days (and we're just a bit above the 49th) where it was -35C (-31F) give or take.. now, that was bitter.

Dogs wouldn't even go out (except to pee) and they have fur!
0 Replies
 
 

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