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Old 10-29-2020, 01:30 AM   #1
Bus Crazy
Join Date: Sep 2018
Posts: 1,641
Year: 2007
Coachwork: Thomas Built
Chassis: Minotour
Engine: Chevy Express 3500 6.6l
Evaporative/Swamp Cooler

A month ago I traversed the Western Mojave Desert in my short bus without AC. It was sooo hot! It was about 100 degrees. I’m not planning on having a mini-split or a generator to run it. I don’t have room for either.

I’ve been thinking about a swamp cooler. I don’t have a lot of wall space left so I was thinking of making something that lives under the bus and has air grates in the floor.

All thoughts, ideas, insight are welcome.

Danjo is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-29-2020, 02:13 AM   #2
Bus Geek
Join Date: Sep 2015
Posts: 3,630
Year: 2002
Coachwork: Thomas Built Bus
Chassis: Freightliner FS65
Engine: Caterpillar 3126E Diesel
Rated Cap: 71 Passenger- 30,000 lbs.
You probably know that swamp coolers are only effective in arid regions (like the Mojave). The coolers run the air through wet material (usually a form of straw). The moisture absorbs heat from the air, making it cooler ... and more humid. In higher humidity areas, the heat absorbed is much less because the incoming air is already moist.

That said ... they are effective in those dry regions.
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Old 10-30-2020, 12:52 AM   #3
Join Date: Mar 2020
Location: So Cal high desert
Posts: 49
Year: '46?
Coachwork: Wayne
Chassis: Chevy Big Bolt
Engine: 216 putt-putt
Rated Cap: 35mph downhill with push
There are small single room sized swamp coolers you might take a look at for ideas. They tend to be about the size of a kitchen trash can. Some can connect to a water source and some need to be refilled as needed.
Under the bus presents several challenges, like how to get the water supplied/resupplied, and having the water tank and soak pads in available space and still be effective, while one big advantage is eventual water leaks are less of an issue than a roof mounted cooler.
There are 2 electrical needs, fan and water pump. The most power consumed by a swamp cooler is the fan and getting it to work is absolutely essential to keeping your cool. For a 12 volt electrical system on a vehicle an electric radiator fan can really pull the air like a tornado with multiple speeds possible. Bonus, on warn but not-so-hot days you can run just the fan for ventilation without soaking the pads.
The only other electrical power needed is for the water pump motor to soak the pads and for a vehicle that can be something like a 12 volt fuel pump or something that can handle pumping water.
One other point, coolers need to have Air In/Air Out, so letting the air out is just as important as getting the air in.
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evaporative, swamp

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