Both, an air cooler and an air conditioner are appliances that help cool the indoor air. And this where the similarities between both the domestic devices end! The differences are many with few of the main ones highlighted here.
- Air cooler use water as the medium to cool the air. Air conditioners use chemical compounds called refrigerants to do the same. Water is a natural resource whereas the refrigerant due to its chemical nature emits poisonous gases in the air while cooling the air. The air cooler without water will not be able to perform its basic function of cooling the air.
- Air coolers use electricity to run but as per some available estimates, the electricity required by an air conditioner to run is 8 times more than the room coolers.
- The running costs of an air cooler are much less compared to that of an air conditioner. Not only power bills, ac’s require high installation costs vis-à-vis an air cooler that do not need any special insulation or mechanical work for installation. Maintenance of an air cooler too is simpler that can be done by any layman however maintenance of an air conditioner needs professional servicing that can be an expensive affair. Spare parts are easily available for the former whereas for the latter any change in part is again an investment if outside the warranty period.
- The cooler price is cheap which is about 10-15% of an air conditioner price. Thus the difference between the initial investments for an air conditioner and air cooler or the desert cooler is enormous.
- A cooler works best in dry and hot conditions and fails in to work effectively under humid conditions or places where the pollution levels are very high because it adds moisture to air. The conditioner on the other hand removes moisture from air and works best in hot, dry and humid conditions.
- Not only does a cooler circulate natural, fresh and clean air because of its mechanism to draw in air from outside, it works superb with doors and windows open as it allows maximum ventilation and circulation of air. Not so with the air conditioner – it works best when all doors and windows are closed.
- An air cooler works effortlessly and noiselessly vis-à-vis the air conditioner that makes noise when operating.
The best air coolers in India come from some of the top international brands. The good part is that these coolers are built with durable material like ABS plastic body and honeycomb pads that are made of natural fibers. They are equipped with water level indicators and some additional features available at very competitive cooler price to make them the natural choice for people with budgetary constraints.
One major limitation of the air cooler is that if not maintained properly especially if the water tank is not cleaned from time to time and the pads not changed, it can become breeding ground for mosquitoes, generate a bad odor and overall create unhygienic conditions in the space where the device is placed.