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10 Easy Steps To Know How To Make A Swamp Cooler Colder

10 Steps - How To Make A Swamp Cooler Colder

A swamp cooler or an evaporative cooler is much cheaper to run than a graduation conditioner. On average the running cost of a swamp cooler is only 15 to 35 percent better than an air conditioner of the same size. They are always the most efficient to cool your home but there are a few simple ways to boost the impact of your swamp cooler. 

To make your swamp cooler edgier and colder you can replace the pads once in a while, avoid using them on humid days, keep your windows somewhat open, place a dehumidifier next to it, place moisture soaking plants inside your home, do regular maintenance, add ice on the water, keep your tank full, etc. 

There are a few other tips and tricks that can surely eliminate the performance of your swamp cooler which you can only learn about in detail if you read our whole piece more carefully. 

How To Make A Swamp Cooler Colder? 10 Easy Step

To make your swamp cooler colder than usual follow the steps down below:

Step 1

Replace the blue sponge pads. These do not tend to absorb water as you would hope. A good and cheap replacement is to pull them out and place aspen wood in the gap that’s left. This is much better at absorbing the water and allows the cooler to work more efficiently. 

Step 2

Avoid using it on humid days. Swamp coolers make water evaporate into the air. On humid days there’s a lot of water in the air. This dampness means that evaporation is not enough and so the temperature does not seem to be reducing as significantly as it should have. These types of cooler work much better in hot dry climates. 

Step 3

Open your windows. By opening windows you increase the airflow in the room which boosts the swamp cooler’s power. In addition, it will release any humidity that has built up in the room from the swamp cooler itself. This will let the humid air out of the room and permit drier air from the exterior to come in. An inch of space should be plenty to allow a breeze in and booth the functionality of your cooler. 

Step 4

Invest in a dehumidifier. If you don’t want to open your window the dehumidifier will extract the moisture from the air and collect the water in a reservoir where it will sit until you empty the tank. Place it near the air intake vent on your cooler. 

Step 5

Add some plants to your home. Health plants are very good at taking in moisture from the air. Plants like cacti, succulents, yucca, euphorbia, aloe, bromeliads, air plants, peace lily, Boston fern, and English ivy. 

Step 6

Use a portable swamp cooler. In addition to the larger swamp coolers which are designed to be plumbed into your home and resin stationary, you can also purchase portable smaller coolers. With this, you can move the cooler around your house easily. 

Step 7

Change where it sits. Modify the tack in which they are frittering air. This means you can target the areas that you regularly sit in ensuring that you’re comfortable no matter the temperature. 

Step 8

Allow the pads to get wet. When you first divert on your swamp cooler the evaporative pads are all dried up. It takes around 15 minutes to saturate with water. You should confirm the water tank is maximum when you turn the fan on. You can also leave the fan off until the evaporative pads are fully soaked. 

Step 9

Use cold water. Room tent water is the most efficient at evaporating in a swamp cooler. Studies have shown that water from the cold tap is the optimal water temperature for swamp coolers. So add ice to your swamp cooler. 

Step 10

Clean your cooler regularly. It will perform optimally when it is run and in good condition. You should clean your cooler before first use and when you’re putting it away in the storage. 

How To Make A Swamp Cooler With A Box Fan 

There is a quick and easy way to make a swamp cooler with a box fan and some other cheap things in the process. This works great if you are in a small room or any confined area. 

Ingredients & Tools 

  • 20-inch box fan
  • Cooling pad 
  • Screen 
  • Bucket
  • A water pump
  • 10-feet clear aquarium tubing (⅜-inch)

Step 1: The first thing you have to do is, cut a piece of the screen just about the same size as the dimensions of the fan. Meaning, that for a 20-inch fan, cut 21×21 inches of screen. This will act as the barrier between the back grill of the fan and the cooling pad to ensure no water gets in there. 

Step 2: Now go ahead and cut down the cooling pad to match the back of the fan as well. About a 21×21 square. But remember to measure before you cut. 

Step 3: Now fix the pad and the screen to the fan. Remove all the nuts from the rear side of the fan. Put a washer over each screw to hold it in place. Now screw the nuts back in the hole over the pad and screen setup. Trim the excess padding from the sides. 

Step 4: Poke the holes in the hose pipe across the top so that the pad will get soaked. Add water to your bucket. If you want, go through and wrap around some wires with a fan and the padding so everything holds securely. 

Step 5: Use a push pin to make some holes into the house all the way around. Make sure to punch enough holes in your tubing ao it saturates the pad. Now connect the hose with the water pump and clamp it off the bucket. Put the fan in front of a window and make sure the back end is hanging outside. You can put a drip tray underneath as well.

How To Optimize A Swamp Cooler 

  • Make sure you don’t have any gaps when installing the pad in the pad frame
  • The damper has to be removed
  • Make sure your pump is putting the proper amount of water to keep the pads wet
  • Keep the back screen clean so they don’t clog
  • Ensure plenty of relief air; not too much or too little relief; just the right amount where a piece of tissue will cling to your window glass lightly and won’t fall

How To Make Evaporative Cooling Pads 

There are three main types of evaporative cooling pads on the market. Most people like to use a blue-colored foam made of polyester pad that works great for DIY projects like this. They are about an inch thick and cheap as well. The cardboard-style pads are mostly used for larger projects as they come very expensive. These pads are called rigid media pads. And the last kind is the aspen pads. 

To make an evaporative cooling pad you need a blue pad, a screen, a push pin, wires, and a scissor. Measure the height and width of your fan first. Then cut your screening and your pad according to the measurement. Flip your fan and place the screen and the pad on top. Cut the wires short and use them to tie the fan with the screen and pad so they remain in place. Cut the excess padding from the sides. Now just finish the rest of the tubing connection. 

How Many Windows Should Be Opened For The Swamp Cooler 

With an air cooling system like this, the air has to get out as fast as it comes in, so you need the right amount of window space open. If you’ve got too much open, the hot breeze can just blow in. If you don’t have a proper opening in the room, the floors get sticky and damp. So to make it easier we’ve just broken it down to daytime use and nighttime use. 

Daytime Use

It is a little bit different because you get the load from the sun coming in. So what you can do is, shut every external window in the house. Open every internal door and open the windows at the furthest point of the room that you are in. 

What happens here is, when you turn the air on, air comes out of every vent and it makes its way through the passages through the room that you are in and out the window. So you’re amplifying the amount of air that’s coming through. 

Nighttime Use 

It is pretty easy. As there is no load of the sun heat it doesn’t matter what windows you’ve got open. You can do whatever you like. But if you are still considering the right amount of venting then, leave 1 to 2 square feet of the window opening or door space for each 1000 CFM. 

Suppose, you have a 4k CFM cooling system and your windows have 4 square feet of space on the outside while open. Here you’ll need 4 to 8 square feet of space which means 1 or 2 open windows at best. 

How Does A Swamp Cooler Work  

Do these coolers use the natural power of evaporation to cool your indoor and outdoor space? They soak in hot dry air passing through a moistened pad. The pad soaks in the heat and humidity by cooling and humidifying the air by as much as 20 degrees. This cool air will recirculate back into your environment to create a gentle breeze. 

Since the process is completely natural, evaporative coolers are more efficient than traditional AC. They use about ten times more energy and typically cost less upfront. Plus unlike portable ACs there’s no installation or venting needed just make sure there’s water in the reservoir and you’re good to go. 

There are a few things you need to consider when it comes to an evaporative cooler:


If you’re planning to use it indoors, then you must know that the evaporative coolers work best in hot dry climates, like the southwestern United States as they release moisture to the air which can feel damp and muggy. If you live somewhere humid, it’s also important to maintain a fresh air supply by opening a door or window while the cooler runs. otherwise, it will circulate humidified air which can leave space feeling cool but clammy. 


They come in various sizes and capacities. They often include multiple cooling speeds, programmable timers, and water refill and cleaning indicators. 


It is a very easy task.  Just clean the water reservoir regularly and replace the cooling pads as needed. If you know your square footage it’s easy to find the right size cooler at 


Most of the models are best for cooling small bedrooms and small living areas. Others can be used both indoors and outdoors like garages, sunrooms, patios, and backyard sand pool areas. Larger commercial-grade coolers are available for large garages, warehouses, sports fields, and outdoor training facilities. 

Swamp Cooler Vs Air Conditioner  

Swamp coolerAir conditioners
They are also called evaporative coolers. They are regular and simple appliances which is why they are so cheap. If you take a powerful fan and regulate its airflow through a wet material you will get a waterfall like a breeze.  They have a spongy, almost cardboard-like material at the back. They work using what’s called a refrigerant which is a chemical liquid slash gas that’s great at holding a temperature. It cools down in the air conditioner and then a fan is blown over that is on the evaporator. 
When you use it, this adds a ton of moisture to the air. So if you live in a dry area it will help keep that air feeling much more comfortable. It dries air before releasing it back out. This removes moisture from the air. So if you live in a humid part of the country an air conditioner is probably your best option. 
They are much cheaper than air conditioners. They can cost anywhere from thirty dollars up to three hundred dollars for a quality portable one. Though industrial models can go up to a thousand dollars. In comparison, portable air conditioners start at around three hundred dollars and quickly go above five to six hundred dollars for a standard home model
Usually uses about 1 or 2 cents per hourUsually uses about a thousand watts per hour that’s 15 cents  
Makes very little noise when on It is a lot louder when turned on
To set up a cooler does not require any extra help as anyone can set it upAc requires some extra steps which are very intricate and might need to hire someone to do that for you

Do Evaporative Coolers Work?

Air coolers or evaporative coolers add humidity to the air through the evaporative cooling process. This resolves many problems that may come from dry air. You can use them both inside and outside with a little bit of adjustment. The operating cost of an air cooler is also far cheaper than an AC. 

The filters in the air cooler ensure that pollen and dust are removed from the air making it healthier to breathe as it eliminates harmful bacteria and particulates. Like this, there are lots of other benefits you can get from an evaporative cooler which makes it a popular choice among many people which also means that it does work very well after all.  

Do Evaporative Coolers Work In Humid Climates?

All through an evaporative cooler works best in dry areas where humidity is low. But if you are living in an area where humidity is very high you can still make your cooler work effectively by providing a proper amount of airflow. If you are using your cooler in a room then make sure the windows or the doors are a little bit open so the air can come in and the heat can get out. This way you can get your cooler to give you much colder air eventually. 

Final Verdict

If you live in a hot humid area and are also running on a fixed budget then there is no better option other than a swamp cooler. It is cheap and won’t even need that much electricity which is a complete blessing for many people. That is why many people living in smaller apartments or dorm rooms prefer to buy a swamp cooler and not an AC.

See Also:

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

What Can I Put In My Swamp Cooler To Make It Colder?

If you are a user of swamp coolers you probably know that they need water to run or produce cool air regularly. To make your swamp cooler you can add ice cubes to the water which will make the water cold and the air will be even colder. Make sure there is proper ventilation in the room to make the cooler much more effective. 

Does Putting Ice In A Swamp Cooler Make It Colder?

Yes, it will surely make the water colder which will also make the air colder as well.

Why Is My Swamp Cooler Not Getting Cold?

There can be many reasons for this kind of problem such as the lack of water in the cooler, clogged padding, lack of airflow, no ventilation, etc. 

How Many Degrees Does A Swamp Cooler Cool?

A swamp cooler can reduce the heat from 15 to 40 degrees Fahrenheit and even more if there is proper air circulation in the area. 

How Effective Are Swamp Coolers?

If you live in a dry area where humidity is very low then a swamp cooler can surely help you with the cooling and increasing the humidity level. In that case, you can say that it is pretty effective. 

What Are The Pros And Cons Of A Swamp Cooler?

Pros: It requires half the cost of central ac to install, costs 75% less electricity to run, humidifies the air, is perfect for cooling smaller areas, is less noisy, purifies the air, etc 

Cons: Requires regular maintenance, a breeding ground for mold and bacteria, you’ll need to fill up the tank regularly, not allergy sensitive, won’t cool large homes, not allowed by all HOAs, makes your floor sticky, does work well in the humid areas, etc.  

Can A Swamp Cooler Cool An Entire House?

Usually, swamp coolers are used in smaller spaces like a room or living area. But when it comes to cooling an entire house, a regular-size cooler won’t work. But perhaps you can use an industrial-sized cooler or a central ac. 

Do You Need A Window Open For A Swamp Cooler?

Yes. You have to have a  window or door slightly open so that air can get in and out. 

How Long Should I Run The Pump On My Swamp Cooler?

Usually, many swamp coolers come with separate switches for the fan and the pump. But if you don’t have one, then allow the pump to run first for a few minutes and then turn on the fan so that the pad gets saturated with the water.