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Air Coolers – What Are They and How Do They Work?

air cooler in bedroom

April 17, 2018 by Chris Chapman

A quality air cooler is a cost-effective way of keeping your room or office cool in the hot summer months. However, you’d be surprised how many people have never heard of them, or just lump them in with more expensive air conditioners and assume they can’t afford one! There are many key differences between air conditioners and air coolers, but the short version is air coolers are cheaper, more eco-friendly and usually much more portable, making them ideal for use in small offices, homes or anywhere that installing a big aircon unit isn’t practical. If an air conditioning unit seems like too big of an investment for you, but you still find yourself getting hot and sticky in the summer months, read on.

What does an air cooler actually do?

Most air coolers come with wheels to make them easy to move around

The clue’s in the title! They’re portable units you can pick up or wheel around to any room, that push out a steady stream of cold air to keep the room cool. Their small size and light weight makes them ideal for use in the home as you can easily carry one upstairs, and they’re also a godsend for high-rise office buildings.

Sounds a lot like an aircon unit to me…

Well, yes and no. Air coolers do kick out cold air, but that’s where the similarity with air conditioning units ends as they work in a very different way. Aircon units use compressed refrigerant gas to cool down warm air. That’s the same technology as a common household refrigerator, except instead of keeping that cool air internally, they blow it out into a room. It’s a complicated but extremely effective solution. The downside is that the combination of those two factors means aircon units tend to be more expensive, which can put some people off.

Air coolers take a more natural approach to cooling air. They draw in warm air and use a specially designed pad to cool it down. This pad soaks up cold water, which then evaporates, sucking all the heat out of the air and resulting in a cool, humid breeze. As a result of this, it’s advisable to put your air cooler near an open door or window so the cool air is naturally carried around the room by the air flow. Of course, the air won’t be cooled if the water tank is empty, so it’ll need to be refilled every now and again. If you’re looking at air coolers, always be sure to check the size of the tank.

So there’s no chemicals involved?

Tossing and turning in sticky heat at night? An air cooler gives a natural air flow to send you off to sleep

None at all. It’s all entirely natural, meaning air coolers are a little more eco-friendly. The process is basically a micro version of the way wind cools as it blows over a lake. This results in a very natural-feeling, relaxing cool breeze.

Air conditioning unit or air cooler – which one should I get?

Both are good at very different things. Air coolers are not air conditioning units and you shouldn’t expect the same results. If you need something to keep a large shop floor or open plan office cool, consider looking at an aircon unit as they’ll probably provide better results. You can also get portable air conditioners, which while nowhere near as light as an air cooler, are still easily wheeled around and can be placed in any room. If you’ve got a sun-facing room or office, or a conservatory that gets baking hot, the extra cooling power of an air conditioning unit is probably best for you!

If you’ve only got a small or regular-sized room to keep cool, like a bedroom or boardroom, then an air cooler might be the more efficient choice. They use far less electricity than an aircon unit and don’t cost as much to buy. To break it down into the simplest terms, if you want cold air to be blasted into a large room, get an air conditioner. If you want a more natural flow of cool air to circulate your room, an air cooler will be great.

What should I look for in an air cooler?

The key things that an air cooler has over an aircon unit are:

✔Lower price

✔Cheaper to run

✔Lightweight and portable

Ideally you want an air cooler that excels in all these areas, while still being strong enough to keep your room cool. With that in mind…

HSD Recommends: Symphony Large Portable Air Cooler

Mylek is rapidly becoming known as a market leader for electrical appliances, and the Symphony is a great example of why. It combines all of the above factors with an incredible performance, packed into a sleek, modern design. The minimalist Symphony also weighs just a few kilos, meaning anyone can lift it up stairs, into attic conversions or anywhere. It offers remarkable value for such a low price point, boasting 3 speed settings that you can flip between with a remote control. If you’re tossing and turning on a hot midsummer night, this means you can power up the Symphony from your bed! It also comes with a 4L tank, big enough for you to safely use it all day or night without needing to refill the tank. For an entry level air cooler that can cope with regular use, there really isn’t any competition.

If you have questions about the Symphony or any other air coolers, or you’re still not sure whether an aircon unit is more your speed, give us a call on 0800 091 3171 or use the live chat function on

Air Conditioning

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One response to “Air Coolers – What Are They and How Do They Work?”

  1. MR CM NUTTALL says:

    I Bough Mylex Air Cooler very happy with the Air Cooler 2019

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