How Much Is an Evaporative Cooler? Cost To Install Evaporative Cooler?

How much is an evaporative cooler?

Paying huge energy bills on air conditioning can be quite overwhelming. Some people pay as much as $60 to $100, and even higher, monthly for air conditioning, and that can put a strain on their finances.

If you’re tired of those huge bills, you may be looking to find alternatives and evaporative coolers easily come to mind.

Portable, easy to install (if needed), and less expensive to run, evaporative coolers- also called swamp coolers- are fast becoming a perfect remedy for people requiring alternative cooling solutions to the summer heat.

But, there are also larger swamp coolers and, as with all appliances, the most important piece of information for any potential buyer is the price. How much exactly is an evaporative cooler? Is it worth it?

We’ll tell you all about the cost of buying and installing an evaporative cooler, as well as the different prices for the different categories.

How Much Does an Evaporative Cooler Cost?

The average cost of an evaporative cooler is dependent on a number of factors. Swamp coolers are available in different sizes, designs, types and capacities, and their prices reflect these differences.

This is why you can find a small, portable unit for less than $200 with DIY installation and yet find another large, whole-house, roof-mounted and professionally installed unit for as much as $7,500 (including installation costs).

For small units that do not require professional installation, the price range is between $150 and $600. For larger, professionally installed units, that price goes up to around $1,500 to $4,000, excluding installation costs.

However, to put a blanket price on evaporative coolers would be wrong. As we noted earlier, they come in different types and sizes and these affect their prices. Let’s explore the various categories of swamp coolers and see how much each category costs.

Price of Different Types of Evaporative Coolers

There are three major types of evaporative coolers; direct, indirect and combined evaporative coolers. These different types often have different price tags based on their level of complexity.

1. Direct Evaporative Cooler

Direct evaporative coolers can either be used portably or mounted and often cost between $200 and $5,000. They are the cheapest and most common type, involving the process of fan blowing air through soaked-up pads into the air.

2. Indirect Evaporative Cooler

This is almost always mounted because they are designed that way. Indirect units are slightly more expensive than direct units overall, and their prices range from $1,500 to about $6,000. These are more complex because they use heat exchangers.

3. Combined Systems

These ones are specially designed to combine the mechanisms of direct and indirect swamp coolers. They are the most expensive, ranging from $3,000 to $6,000 on average.

Price of Evaporative Cooler by Square Footage

Apart from type, the coverage capacity of the swamp cooler is another factor that determines its price. The smaller the room the unit is able to cover, the lesser the price- quite naturally.

A large unit will be able to cover larger spaces in your home, but will also cost more to purchase and run.

For instance, if you need a swamp cooler that can cover your entire 2,500 sq ft home, you’d need a pretty large unit, like a ground or roof-mounted cooler, and that would cost you between $1,500 and $5,000, depending on other factors. Here’s a simple list below.

Square FootagePrice of Evaporative CoolerRecommended Cooler Model
100 sq. ft – 400 sq. ft$150 – $500AGILLY 3-in-1 Evaporative Air Cooler
500 sq. ft – 1,000 sq. ft$300 – $1000Hessaire MC37M Evaporative Cooler
1,000 sq. ft – 1,900 sq. ft$850 – $3,500Hessaire MC61M Evaporative Cooler
2,000 sq. ft – 3,000 sq. ft$2,000 – $5,500Aerocool Ecokool Pro
Above 3,000 sq. ftAbove $4000Big Ass Fans Cool-Space 400 Portable Evaporative Cooler

Price of Swamp Cooler by Location/Installation

How the swamp cooler is designed to be located or installed is another factor that affects pricing. There are four different ways to look at swamp coolers in this regard; portable, window-mounted, ground-mounted and roof-mounted, and each of them is priced differently.

1. Portable Units

These are the cheapest you’ll find on the market. They are small and only often cover small to medium spaces. A portable evaporative cooler is sold for $150-$1,300, depending on the square footage and other factors.

They also usually do not require professional installation. A good example is the Hessaire MC37M Evaporative Cooler.

2. Window-mounted Units

Just as the name implies, these ones are designed to be mounted on a window. They’re larger and usually more than portable units, but smaller than roof or ground-mounted swamp coolers.

Window-mounted swamp coolers cost around $700 to $2,000, depending on the capacity and size. The Essick Air Window Evaporative Cooler is a good example.

3. Ground-mounted Units

These are a very powerful set of evaporative coolers which are installed outside the house, with vents created from airflow into the house. They are, however, easier to set up than roof-mounted units.

Along with installation costs, a ground-mounted unit would gulp between $2,000 and $6,000, depending on the size and capacity.

4. Roof-mounted Units

These are the most expensive type of evaporative coolers, with prices ranging from $2,500 to $7,000 per unit. They are really powerful with the capacity to cool entire buildings.

Depending on the type and condition of your roof, the installation might cost a small fortune, which would affect the overall cost. A typical roof-mounted evaporative cooler can cover an entire house or large hall.

Price of Swamp Cooler by Brand

Some brands ride on popularity and brand equity and tend to be more expensive than other regular brands. This is not a secret and is common among most products.

The bigger the brand name, the more likely it is to command a higher market price. This is why a brand is a factor here too.

The most expensive brands for swamp coolers are those that design industrial units and fix their prices at $1,500 to $4,000. The cheaper ones like Hessaire have products for as low as $150.

Let’s check some of the popular evaporative cooler brands and price range.

BrandSwamp Cooler Price Range
Hessaire$150 – $1,000
Breezewell$150 – $1,000
Agilly$170 – $1,000
AOLOS$200 – $2,400
MasterCool$400 – $3,000
Bonaire$700 – $3,200
Breezair$1,000 – $3,500

How Much Does an Evaporative Cooler Installation Cost?

evaporative cooler installation cost

Generally, installation for evaporative coolers costs around $200 to $2,500.

The cost of installation differs based on the type of cooler you have. Naturally, roof-mounted air coolers will require much more to install than other types.

Simple, portable units, for instance, can be DIY and not require any significant cost. But others would. Larger units like roof and ground-mounted swamp coolers are quite technical in design and installation require some level of expertise.

For instance, a window-mounted swamp cooler may only require some basic installation kits and a few man-hours, all amounting to between $300 and $500.

For ground-mounted units, much more professionalism is required and you can spend as much as $1,000-$1,500 on installation. But if you’ve just bought a roof-mounted evaporative cooler, you should be ready to part with around $2,000 and even more on installation.

Final Words:

Evaporative coolers are very useful for homes in warm and dry climates. Even though they’re considered more affordable than air conditioners, some of them still command a relatively high price, especially the large, whole-house, ground or roof-mounted units.

These ones also tend to require professional installation which will cost some money. On the other hand, there are portable units for less than $200 that should effectively take care of your single room and small spaces.

The best way to go is to get an accurate measurement of the room you intend to cool and find the least expensive (but equally effective and efficient) unit on the market.

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