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Last updated July. 19, 2017

We know the difference between an air cooler and an air conditioner. The differences are vast and clear cut. But what are the differences between an evaporative air cooler and a humidifier? Many believe that they perform the same functions and partially that’s true.

Yet their differences are the important factors to concentrate on and study. Their differences make them unique and meant for two entirely different comforts for your home. Evaporative air coolers and humidifiers are not the same nor do they provide the same functions.

While shopping for cooling systems that will provide therapeutic benefits, you need to do your homework before you invest. We have compiled some information to take with you as you shop. Being aware of the main differences of each will help you to make an informed decision on which will be right for your home.



First, let’s talk about the air cooler. This air cooling system runs on a natural system of air and water. It is perfect for those who live in a hot and dry climate. The evaporative air coolers work by cooling the air with a system comprised of a pump, a fan, and water-soaked pads.

Operating it is easy. All you need to do is fill the tank with the right amount of water. When the air cooler is switched on the hot air in your surroundings is circulated into the cooler and through the water-soaked pads. The air is then cooled down and distributed out the air vents with the use of the fan. The air in your home is cooled significantly and a tiny layer of moisture is added to make the air softer to breathe.

The air cooler is a fantastic choice because it is constantly bringing in new air from outside. This makes the air you breathe constantly refreshed and not stale. Evaporative air coolers are also a very healthy choice to use as they reduce certain allergens and health concerns such as eye and skin irritations, nosebleeds, as well as respiratory illnesses.

These systems are also very economical as they are low maintenance, easy to care for and cost very little to buy and install. Because they run on air and water, the energy they use is minimal and the water that they require is minimal as well.

They work throughout the whole house and can be bought in different sizes and models to fit your needs. They can be purchased as a permanent unit to serve your whole house or as a portable variation to serve just one room. Each make and model have special features to use. Choose the one that is best for you and your family.

To calculate the size you need you can use a simple formula: square footage of space X ceiling height in feet. Once you get that answer divide it by 2 to get the number of CFMs, which are the cubic feet per minute of air that the air cooler will need to blow. This is an important calculation to do so you will know the size of the cooling system that you will need to keep your space sufficiently cool.



Now let’s talk about humidifiers. Humidifiers add moisture to the dry air. They do not work to cool the air but mainly to raise the humidity level. They do not bring in fresh air from outside but rather work with the air already indoors to purify and add moisture. They are meant to work throughout a limited space, typically just one or two rooms.

Humidifiers work very well in the colder months of winter when the humidity in the air drops. Generally, cold air cannot hold in the moisture as well as warm air. Thus, the air inside our home becomes more dry and harsher to manage in the wintertime. There are different types of humidifiers to choose from and each one works a little differently to improve the air quality of your home.

The evaporative humidifier is a cool mist humidifier. It works by pulling air into an internal fan. The air is then passed through a water-soaked wick filter to absorb the moisture. Once the air is filled with the moisture it is released into your home.

The ultrasonic humidifier is another form of cool mist humidifier. This model utilises an ultrasonic vibrating system instead of the fan to make very fine water droplets that are then forced into the air of your home. These are quiet in comparison to the other types.

Cool mist humidifiers create room temperature moisture. The air is not cold but just cool enough to lower your home’s internal temperatures by a few degrees. They are the most popular option. They tend to spread their cooled moisture over a larger area than the warm mist varieties.

Warm mist humidifiers, on the other hand, will distribute warm, moist air into your environment. Of these two, the cool mist is great for temperatures all year long and the warm mist humidifier is good for the winter months when our outside temperatures drop.

When looking for the humidifier that is right for your space you need to calculate your square footage then look for a humidifier that will work for that sized space. Humidifiers will need to be refilled with water typically every 24 hours if you’re using it continuously. There are different makes and models to choose from. Each come equipped with special features to help make your living a little easier.

If you are looking for an air cooling system, then it is important to remember that evaporative air coolers cool the air in the room and add moisture. Humidifiers do not cool the air enough to replace an air cooling system. They will add moisture for therapeutic and medical reasons.

You can also choose to use both depending on where you live and the conditions there. Whether you choose an evaporative air cooler or a humidifier, they both work great for adding in the much-needed moisture.

If you are looking forward to the air being cooled as well, then you will want the evaporative air cooler. It will be your best choice and will keep you cool throughout the long and hot summer.

If you have any further questions, contact us and we would be happy to help you.