Evaporative cooling is a climate control principle that is used in industry and residences every day across the world. Evaporative cooling is popular due to the efficiency and environmental friendliness of the units. However, they do not suit all operating climates, evaporative cooling works best in dry, hot climates. Using an evaporative cooling system in a coastal area would be an example of a bad operating climate. To truly appreciate an evaporative cooling system, you need to compare them to an air-conditioning system. Let’s look at the primary differences between the two methods of cooling to find the best air cooler for you;


Evaporative cooling

  • Very economical to operate
  • Energy efficient
  • Best air cooler with fresh, clean, cool air
  • Inexpensive to install
  • Best used in dry conditions
  • Minimal maintenance
  • Next to no CO2 emissions or harmful CFCs
  • Quiet operation
  • Allows windows and doors to be left open


  • High cost to operate
  • High energy consumption
  • Works effectively in all conditions
  • Recirculates the air
  • High installation costs
  • Higher emissions in comparison to evaporative cooling
  • More regular maintenance required
  • Quiet operation
  • Needs an enclosed sealed room to operate effectively
AB50 Air Cooler
AB50 Evaporative Cooler

The operating costs

Evaporative coolers, or swamp coolers as they are sometimes known, are a very efficient and effective cooling solution that costs a lot less than running air-conditioning. While they still require maintenance, it is not very advanced and can be done by your average home owner in no time at all. Maintenance costs are involved with the cooling pads and the cleaning of the unit, occasionally there may need to service the internal fan inside the unit, but this is very seldom. Usually, all that’s needed to service the unit is a twice seasonal inspections to ensure that the pads are clean, the filter is clean and not clogged and that the pump unit is still operating and soaking the pads with just enough water to keep them damp. Keep cool this summer with the best air cooler.

Evaporative coolers require less energy to operate, in some cases up to 80% less power is needed for the same cooling effect offered by an air-con unit. Over a summer season, this can end up saving you a lot of money that would have been spent on your air-con power bill, making them the best air cooler for providing energy efficient operation. You can view our full range of evaporative coolers in our online shop now here if you have any questions at all then please don’t hesitate to contact us and we’ll be more than happy to help with any queries you may have.

hot air dry air cooling

Quality of the air

Evaporative coolers are a great way of taking outside air, purifying it and cooling it and then pumping it into your home. Evaporative coolers require the home or offices doors and windows to be open to creating air-circulation and force the warmer air out of the building.

On the flip-side, air conditioning units work best in closed areas that allow for them to recirculate the air. This recirculated air is filtered and cooled and released into the room, giving the room clean air.

Evaporative coolers cool the air down by pulling it thru a wetted pad that cools the air down as it passes through it. This cooled air is then forced into the room, cooling down the air and exhausting the hot air in the room outdoors through an open window or door.

Air moisture Levels

Being that the air is somewhat moist, it can stop your skin and eyes from drying out, as well as keep fresh air entering the room at all times. It is important to make sure that you have a door open, or else the room will become damp fairly quickly, this is easily remedied by opening a door or window until the amount of air exiting the room is a little more than the amount entering the room.

insulation map for air coolers

Environmental issues

Air-conditioning units and evaporative coolers alike both use power to operate. However, the evaporative cooler uses a lot less. The power requirements from the fans are minuscule and they can often be up to 80% more energy efficient that air-conditioning units. Evaporative coolers have a much smaller carbon footprint compared to air-con systems.

Another area of pollution is noise. Evaporative coolers are incredibly silent in operation, making them the perfect cooling solution for the home or office, making the evap cooler the best air cooler system available.

Eco friendly air cooler

What are the types of evaporative coolers available?

Take a look through our online catalog to find the right cooling solution for your specific needs. Evap coolers come in ratings for any size office space or residential room up to 125 square meters.

Commercial units with advanced ducting systems are also available for larger installations.

What kind of businesses can benefit from using an evaporative cooler?

  • Laundry facilities
  • Commercial kitchens
  • Industrial plants
  • Greenhouses
  • Industrial factories
  • Warehouses
  • Workshops
  • Event venues
  • Animal housing / poultry and dairy farms
 AB630 Evaporative Cooler
AB630 Evaporative Cooler

Why does evaporation lower temperature?

Evaporation is happening around us all the time. Water evaporates in warm weather and as it does, it cools the air around it when it changes to its gaseous form. Therefore, areas around waterfalls and lakes can sometimes feel cooler than on hilltops or elevated areas.

This is what makes evaporative coolers the best air cooler system that is very effective in hot, dry climates as they have the ability to draw in a lot more heat from the air.

Where do I get my unit from?

Always buy your evaporative cooler, or air-con from a credible, reputable dealer that has good client reviews and offers quality customer service to its clients. Their products should have a warranty and meet global quality and energy usage standards. Make sure that they offer guaranteed installation as well. You can also find out more information in our blog or FAQ page.


GMC Air conditioning is South Africa’s leading cooling and heating distributor, backed by 22 years of real world HVAC experience we’re proud to bring you our line of Evaporative coolers. These include our AB630 for home use with a cooling capacity of 630 cubic metres p/h. Our AB50 for outdoor and large area use with a capacity of 5000 cubic metres p/h and our industrial AB18 with a capacity of 18000 cubic metres p/h. Evaporative coolers are a cost effective eco-friendly way of cooling your premises no matter how larger or small. Got any questions? We’d love to hear from you and the GMC Aircon team is always on hand to help.

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3 Comments on “Evaporative cooling and air-conditioning: Pros and cons”

  1. Very informative article – to be honest we use both evaporative cooler and aircondtioners and find they both have their own uses.

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