August 23, 2014

FAQ

Coolerado FAQ


Facts at a glance:

  • 100% fresh, filtered, cool, and comfortable air with no added humidity
  • Uses 50% – 90% less electricity than traditional air conditioners
  • Affordable, cost competitive with traditional A/C
  • Cooling capacity increases as temperature increases
  • Does not contribute to ozone depletion or have a high global warming potential because it does not use chemical refrigerants
  • 3 year limited warranty
  • Sound rating of 55.9 dB*
  • Low, easy maintenance
  • Net zero water impact
  • No moisture added to conditioned air
  • Patented, new thermodynamic cycle and technology
  • EER of 100 plus compared to traditional air conditioners which are below 15 and evaporative (swamp) coolers which are below 10

*Sound power level @ 2,500 Hz in reference to 1pW.


What is a Coolerado air conditioner?

A Coolerado air conditioner is multi-award winning and the most efficient air conditioning system made. It provides fresh, cool and healthy air while using about one tenth of the electricity of traditional air conditioning systems – saving customers on their energy bills. Coolerado air conditioners have won the R&D 100, the Governor’s Excellence in Renewable Energy, the Western Cooling Challenge and the Popular Science Best of What’s New – 2009.

What are the benefits of Coolerado air conditioners?

Along with providing a more comfortable cooled space, Coolerado air conditioners save you a lot of money on your electricity bill and are healthier for you and the planet. They provide filtered, fresh and cool air without using any chemical refrigerants – such as Freon or other CFCs, and they reduce environmental impact by using a fraction of the electricity of traditional air conditioning units.

How energy efficient are Coolerado air conditioners?

This depends on the climate. Factors such as outside temperature, level of humidity and water quality all play a role in determining the amount of energy usage. Coolerado units are capable of operating on about one-tenth the amount of electricity of a traditional air conditioner, that equates to less than the amount of energy used to operate a hair dryer.

How much power do the Coolerado AC units consume?

When Coolerado units first start up and go through the wet-out cycle, which lasts approx. 42 minutes, the fan runs at half speed and the water solenoid valve cycles on and off. It is expected the current draw to be approximately 150 watts during this time. Once the unit has competed the wet out cycle and the fan comes up to full speed the power draw would be approximately 650 watts. The associated current draw will vary depending on the exact voltage to the units (200 to 277 vac.). At full fan speed, the current draw would be approximately 3.25 amps at 200 vac. and 2.4 amps at 277 vac.

What is the cost of a Coolerado air conditioner?

Coolerado equipment costs are comparable to the most energy efficient traditional air conditioners on the market.

Because of Coolerado’s extremely energy efficient systems, most customers realize a complete payback within two to three cooling seasons.

What makes the Coolerado air conditioner unique?

Coolerado air conditioners are equipped with our patented HMX systems and using the Maisotsenko Cycle, are the most efficient air conditioning systems made. They provide dry, cool and healthy air, while only using about one tenth the electricity of a traditional air conditioning system.

What is the HMX?

The patented Coolerado Heat and Mass Exchanger was developed to economically take advantage of the Maisotsenko Cycle. A Heat and Mass Exchanger (HMX) consists of several plates of a special plastic that is designed to wick water on one side and transfer heat through the other side. The plates are stacked, separated by channel guides to provide structure to and direct air movement within the HMX. The channel guides divide the incoming air stream into product air and working air. The product air is cooled sensibly (rejecting its heat to the working air), and can be designed to cool below the wet bulb temperature of the incoming air stream. The product air travels the distance of the exchanger and into the space designated for cooling.

The working air initially enters dry channels where it is pre-cooled sensibly before it is fractioned into multiple streams which are directed into wet channels. The heat from the product air is transferred to the working air in the wet channels by means of evaporation (mass transfer and state change). The heat is exhausted out the sides of the HMX and then to the atmosphere.

This process occurs multiple times in a short physical space within the exchanger, resulting in progressively colder product and working air temperatures.

For more details, see the “How it Works” page of our website.

What is the Maisotsenko cycle?

Essentially, the Maisotsenko M-Cycle is the heart of our cooling system – and is based on the discoveries of our Chief Scientist, Dr. Valeriy Maisotsenko. The M-Cycle is best explained through our two-part video series. Basic aspects of the M-Cycle are reviewed in this video, and a more in-depth explanation of the M Cycle, is presented in this video as well.

How do Coolerado air conditioners produce cold air?

Coolerado air conditioners use the same latent* cooling process that transfers heat to a thunderstorm. Water is evaporated into air in one chamber within the air conditioner, and this cools the air flowing in an adjacent chamber. The cold air is used to cool the building while the water vapor holding the heat is exhausted to the outside to be renewed by the atmosphere. This ensures the freshest air possible is delivered to the customer.

*Latent Energy: Undeveloped energy that is capable of being converted into usable energy under suitable conditions.

Do Coolerado air conditioners change the humidity of the cool air they provide?

The cool air provided by the M30, M50 and C60 models is the same humidity ratio as the outside air. The relative humidity will go up as the air is cooled, as is the case with any AC system. Cooler air will hold less moisture.

Can Coolerado air conditioners be used in humid climates?

Depending on the application, Coolerado air conditioners can be used in any location. While “high and dry” is optimal, many commercial and industrial applications do not require low humidity or temperatures below 80°F (such as a restaurant needing makeup air in a kitchen) and Coolerado is a great solution for those needs. Coolerado air conditioners work well in “low and dry” climates also.

Don’t we want to add humidity to the air in the dry western states in the summer months?

No, the humidity is at optimum levels in the summer months throughout most of the western USA, including the deserts. Traditional air conditioners dry the air out too much in this region, causing many people to run humidifiers to make it more comfortable.

Direct evaporative air coolers add too much humidity. When the air becomes too humid, the skin cannot evaporate moisture off easily and use the body’s natural cooling system. This humidity, and the musty smell that sometimes comes from such a cooler, is why many people refer to a direct evaporative cooler as a “swamp cooler”.

There is direct evaporative cooling advertising stating humid air feels colder. That is true for temperatures 50°F and colder; however, in the summer months, room air is generally held at about 70°F or above, where high humidity feels like a swamp. Skin becomes clammy and can’t evaporate water easily.

How do Coolerado air conditioners reduce environmental impact?

Coolerado air conditioners use up to 90% less electricity depending on the humidity and elevation above sea level. As a result, electrical demand is significantly reduced, thereby reducing the amount of pollutants created by power plants. The hotter it is outside, the better Coolerado air conditioners work, making them much more efficient than traditional air conditioners during peak cooling periods*, and further reducing peak power loads. In addition, Coolerado air conditioners do not use any chemical refrigerants, and the hearts of our air conditioners are made from completely recyclable materials, so if they ever wear out, they won’t clutter up our landfills.

*Peak cooling periods: The period of time during the day that power plants are producing and consumers are using the most energy.

How much air is needed to cool with a Coolerado air conditioner?

There are several variables that determine how much air is needed. These include the size of the space being cooled, activities taking place in the space, desired temperature in the building, moisture in the outside air, temperature of outside air and altitude. Generally, you need about as much airflow as a traditional air conditioner for the same heat load.

What type of thermostat is needed with Coolerado air conditioners?

Coolerado air conditioners can be controlled with standard heating and air conditioning thermostats.

Will the unit build up with mineral deposits?

Not if the water hardness is low (below 60 PPM). Coolerado units allow dissolved minerals in the water to wick out and flow down an incline where minerals are flushed away to the drain. A sodium based water softener can be used to lower the water hardness.

Can Salt Water, Storm Water or Gray Water be used as an alternative to Fresh Water?

In some cases, these water sources can be used as an alternative to fresh water by:

  • Filtering out un-dissolved minerals.
  • Determining the Total Alkalinity (must be less than 175 PPM).
  • If there are dissolved organics in the water, they may need to be removed – such as in a water treatment plant or a continual addition of chlorine, or some other biological killing chemical.
  • Hard water, (presence of calcium and magnesium in the water, represented by a total alkalinity being over 60 PPM), along with soap will create soap scum that could create problems.

Coolerado cannot know the details of your water supply and therefore how the water will react with our evaporation process. You should have your water tested first to properly address any water quality concerns.

What is the average water usage and cost associated with operating a Coolerado air conditioner?

The average amount of water used for our 6-ton unit will be about 4 to 6 gallons per hour depending on the climate and water quality. It will consume more water during the day through peak periods* and less in the evenings and transitional seasons.

Even with the high water rates in desert climates, it will generally cost less than $15 per month to supply water to our 6-ton unit. Assuming average electricity rates during the summer months, a consumer would likely spend a total of less than $60 per month.

Additionally, Coolerado air conditioners are net-zero water products.

*Peak periods: The period of time during the day that power plants are producing and consumers are using the most energy.

What does Net-Zero water usage mean?

Power plants use water as part of their process to create electricity – therefore products that use a lot of energy require power plants to use more water to create the electricity required.

Traditional air conditioners use 80% to 90% more electricity and energy than Coolerado air conditioners – therefore, requiring more water to create this needed power.

Coolerado air conditioners use water as part of the operating requirements. Net-zero water usage means that the amount of water used by the electrical power plant to generate electricity, combined with the amount of water a Coolerado unit will use, is less than or equal to the amount of water a power plant would use to produce energy for a traditional air conditioner.

This is referred to as being net-zero water, or net-water neutral.

Do we need to use a water softener to treat water or do we use tap water?

Yes, a sodium based water softening system is required, if your water is considered hard (more than 60 PPM). The 30 micron water filter that is supplied with the units must be used regardless of the water hardness.

Is there any fungus problem in the water side of the unit? Does it need treatment?

Coolerado’s plate material is a polypropylene with a biocide impregnated into it to keep organics from growing. If your water contains organics then it should have a biocide, such as chlorine, added.

Are Coolerado Air Conditioners compatible with Photovoltaic systems (solar panels)?

Yes, Coolerado air conditioners are compatible with photovoltaic (PV) systems. This application uses our Electronically Commutated Motor (ECM) which allows for significantly greater power generation from the PV system by ducting Coolerado exhaust air behind the PV panels (to cool them).

For a more detailed explanation, view the solar air conditioning video in the Tech Info section of our website.

Are Coolerado systems capable of Heat production?

We currently have an award-winning, commercial Roof Top Unit (RTU)* with an optional heat application that will be in limited production in 2011. For more information on the H80, please visit the Products section on the Coolerado website.

*Roof Top Unit (RTU): Acronym for Roof Top Unit. This is an air conditioner model type that is utilized for commercial application. These units are typically larger and much heavier than residential air conditioners.

Are Coolerado units noisy?

They are very quiet with a sound rating of 59.9 dB. The heat and mass exchanger media deadens the sound coming into the building. The fan itself is very efficient and quiet.

How often should a Coolerado air conditioner be serviced?

Maintenance needs are dependent upon the local water quality, as well as the outdoor air quality. Under normal conditions, there is a start-up procedure at the beginning of each cooling season that includes removing any winter duct blocking, ensuring the filters are clean, checking the fan for obstructions, cleaning and filling the water strainer with a liquid soap, turning on the water valve and powering up the unit. The water strainer needs to be cleaned more or less frequently depending on the quality of the local water. Air filters need to be replaced monthly to seasonally, depending on the amount of dust in the outside air. This is no different than changing the filters on a furnace. There is a winter shutdown procedure to drain the water, as well as dry the unit out. These general maintenance procedures are simple to perform and quick to complete.

How often do you need to change air and water filters and what is the cost?

It depends on the air quality, but usually once a quarter, which is about $20 USD.