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Old 03-09-2007, 08:56 PM
 
7 posts, read 35,593 times
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I am going to Las Cruces in two week to buy a home. For various reasons, I need to buy within a very short timeframe, so I need as much info as possible.

I've been watching the MLS daily and am in touch with a realtor who is willing to help me make a rapid selection.

My question: can one comfortably live in Cruces with only a swamp cooler? I live in southern Arizona, about 5 degrees warmer, and have both AC and swamp. I could not do without my AC here. When I lived in the Mojave desert, I similarly had both AC and swamp but used the AC about a month a year. Las Cruces homes seem to offer just one of the other and many of the homes I find attractive have only swamp coolers.

Any opinions?

MGarcia121
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Old 03-10-2007, 03:23 AM
 
Location: Las Cruces and loving it!
576 posts, read 2,123,208 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mgarcia121 View Post
I am going to Las Cruces in two week to buy a home. For various reasons, I need to buy within a very short timeframe, so I need as much info as possible.

I've been watching the MLS daily and am in touch with a realtor who is willing to help me make a rapid selection.

My question: can one comfortably live in Cruces with only a swamp cooler? I live in southern Arizona, about 5 degrees warmer, and have both AC and swamp. I could not do without my AC here. When I lived in the Mojave desert, I similarly had both AC and swamp but used the AC about a month a year. Las Cruces homes seem to offer just one of the other and many of the homes I find attractive have only swamp coolers.

Any opinions?

MGarcia121
MGarcia121, we lived very comfortably in Las Cruces with only a swamp cooler. It added a bit of humidity which was always welcome except for the one week in August when nature sent a tiny bit of outside humidity our way. We loved our ceiling fans.

~clairz
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Old 03-10-2007, 05:38 AM
 
13,138 posts, read 37,701,619 times
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Swamp coolers (evaporative) will work fine as its dry most of the year. Only during high humidity like summer thunderstorms will they be worthless but thats rare. Refrigerated air will cost you more on electricity where as swamp coolers will cost you more on your water bills. But again they work fine for the dry desert.

Also you can service evaporative coolers yourself and the parts are inexpensive where as Refrigerated air you must have a liscened service tech/company to repair (charge system, recovery of refrigerant etc.)
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Old 03-10-2007, 05:51 AM
 
Location: McKinney, TX
271 posts, read 1,054,640 times
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When I was considering buying a home in Las CRuces, I noticed in the listings, that most houses had a "evaporative system" instead of air conditioned for cooling purposes. To be honest, I don't what that is is but I assumed that the previous owners had used it satisfactorily in the hot summers. Eventually, I bought a condo with the conventional "Electric Central Air".
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Old 03-10-2007, 07:45 AM
 
Location: Santa Fe, New Mexico
3,011 posts, read 9,260,182 times
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I have a question.

Do swamp coolers use a lot of water to operate?

Seems like in a state where water conservation is a MUST, this might be a problem to consider.
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Old 03-10-2007, 09:50 AM
 
Location: Lompoc,CA
1,302 posts, read 4,866,999 times
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Default Water coolers...

Someone correct me if Im wrong, but I thought they just used
the same water over and over,except when it got low and then it
drew in more as needed. We had one when we lived on base at
Holloman and it worked fine,except for the monsoon month(s) Also lived
in La Luz and had central air. I think when we move back it wil be the
swamp cooler for us, they are cheaper!!! And work fine. We never used
them at night either. It cooled down enough for us.

Greenchili
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Old 03-10-2007, 06:49 PM
 
7 posts, read 35,593 times
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My experience with swamp coolers is that they do great when it's dry but even a slight rise in humidity can make them ineffective. So, maybe the key question is how long the monsoon season last in Las Cruces? Maybe it is less severe than the other deserts I lived in, since Las Cruces is higher and therefore cooler.

As to water usage, I believe most models recirculate the water, but since it is constantly evaporating, it is still using water. My current one has a bleed-off line so that evaporative deposits don't build up quite so fast, which means more water usage. As I mentioned before, I have both swamp and AC here in southern Arizona.

They are usually cheaper to operate, depending upon water costs vs. electricity costs. I think some come with thermostats, but the ones I've had are either on or off. If you're away during the workday, you have to decide whether to leave it on all day, paying to cool your unoccupied house, which can equal the cost of an AC that is on a set-back thermostat.

Thanks for all the comments. Anymore input?

MGarcia121
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Old 03-11-2007, 05:39 AM
 
13,138 posts, read 37,701,619 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mgarcia121 View Post
My experience with swamp coolers is that they do great when it's dry but even a slight rise in humidity can make them ineffective. So, maybe the key question is how long the monsoon season last in Las Cruces?
I worked at an appartment complex up here in ABQ from 95 to 99 and they had 220 swamp coolers and rarely they didn't cool if working properly (water level, float, pump, supply line etc) as for when Moosoon its usually in the afternoons from like 3:00 to 6:00 p.m.in june/july and although they won't work well then the thunderstorms themselves cool off the area. I was raised as a kid in Las Cruces and we had evaporative cooling and it worked fine and also having a large tree to sit under will cool you as the heat is a Dry heat and not Humid like when i lived in Florida in my Navy days.
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Old 03-12-2007, 02:22 PM
 
Location: Okinawa, Japan
259 posts, read 617,462 times
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Default swamp coolers

Take my advice..forget the swamp cooler. If Cruces happens to have a wet year, the heat will be unbearable and disgusting. Its better to be safe than sorry. I paid the price of using a swamp cooler one summer when it was exceptionally hot and humid--for Cruces standards at least--for a good portion of the time. I'd only have a swamp cooler if you couldn't afford refrigerated air.
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Old 03-12-2007, 03:10 PM
 
Location: Metro Milwaukee, WI
3,198 posts, read 11,699,554 times
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Even up here in Albuquerque (similar climate to Las Cruces but a bit cooler than LC) if money was no object to me, I would actually prefer an A/C...I love the heat of the high desert in the summer, but the strong sun beating down coupled with some possible inefficiencies of swamp coolers makes me yearn at times for an A/C. I love being in the heat OUTSIDE...but when inside, I like a nice, temperate 68, 70 degrees, especially for sleeping.

Having said that though, with you living in Southern AZ, you may be really acclimated to warmer conditions even inside.

Also, I should note that swamp coolers work great for the most part, and with money NOT being a non-factor for me, it is just fine in general. However, all things equal, I would give the slight preference to A/C...but I wouldn't consider it a deal breaker by any means on a great house with a swamp.
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