Should I Use A Swamp Cooler And An Air Conditioner To Cool My House

indoor ac unit on blue wall with couch

Should I Use A Swamp Cooler And An Air Conditioner To Cool My House

When you live in a desert climate, keeping your home cool can be an uphill battle. Fortunately, in the quest to make your home as comfortable as possible, you have a lot of tools at your disposal, including air conditioners and swamp coolers.

While both of these systems can help you control the temperature in your home, they function very differently, leading some homeowners to wonder if they can use both at the same time. Find out if you can use a swamp cooler and an air conditioner to cool your home and learn how each of these convenient tools functions.


Swamp coolers, which are also known as evaporative coolers, are a type of open cooling system that work best in climates with low humidity levels and certain hotter temperatures. Essentially, swamp coolers work by taking in warm, dry air, cooling it by passing it over a wet pad, and then directing the now cool air into your home.

Swamp coolers can cool the air in your home to a surprising degree and in some cases can be much more affordable than central air conditioners. However, on days with high humidity and or on days with temperatures into the 100s, the effectiveness of swamp coolers diminishes very quickly.


The first step in using a swamp cooler is to determine the kind you need. Window-mounted room coolers and whole-home coolers are available that can be mounted either on your roof or the ground. Roof mounted are the most efficient but are the toughest to install. Ground-mounted are the most popular.

Get a cooler that can handle up to 40 air changes per hour, with an average of 30, and 1000 CFM per air conditioning ton (referring to the BTUs of heat removed per hour). Purchase one with a solid air filter to remove allergens and particulates.

When using your swamp cooler, be sure the dew point is under 55 degrees Fahrenheit. Open a window to let the air out in rooms you want to cool — you’ll need up to 2 square feet of open window per 1,000 cfm to balance out the operation. Close windows in rooms you don’t want cooled. Choose the right speed to keep your home comfortable. A higher speed will cool more and a lower speed will be more energy efficient.


Most homeowners choose traditional air conditioners to cool the air in their home. Air conditioners, in very simplistic terms, essentially pull warm air through the system and separate heat and moisture from that air, leaving cold air which is then blown back into the house through the air ducts. The excess heat and moisture captured by an air conditioner is then released outside of the home. As you might imagine, this results in the air in your home being much cooler and drier.

Air conditioners are the most effective solution for controlling the temperature in your entire house and are generally unaffected by outside temperatures and humidity. A central A/C unit properly connected to your home’s ductwork can quickly transmit cold air through your home, keeping everyone cool and comfortable.


Now that you know how both cooling devices work, you probably want to know if you can use a swamp cooler and an air conditioner together. Unfortunately, the answer is not effectively. These tools cool your home using diametrically opposed methods. Where a swamp cooler introduces moist air into your home, an air conditioner removes moisture, meaning they often cancel each other out when used at the same time.

To cool your home effectively, you should choose to only use one of these devices at time and not together at the same time.


Since you should not use a swamp cooler and an air conditioner together, to keep your home cooling cost down, you should think about installing or upgrading to a high-quality energy efficient A/C unit in your home with the help of the experts at Legacy Air.

Legacy Air provides residential cooling services, and we would be happy to help you install an air conditioning system that will easily keep your home cool. Contact us right away to get started.

Share this post