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The Best Evaporative Coolers for Your Space

family grilling in the yard next to an outdoor evaporative cooler

Evaporative coolers, also known as swamp coolers, are an exciting advancement in air conditioning technology that use the power of evaporated moisture to lower the temperature of the surrounding air. They can work in tandem with other air conditioning systems or as the sole, standalone cooling system in your home or room. Some even work outside to help keep you and your family cool on hot days. Although they are suited for many uses and locations, evaporative coolers perform best in locations with a dry, arid climate. Since there are so many evaporative coolers on the market today, we made this guide to showcase the best ones Amazon has to offer.

Shopping for an Evaporative Cooler

  • Cooling Power: When choosing an evaporative cooler, the cooling power (measured in cubic feet per minute, or CFM) is definitely important and should be considered along with the size of the spaces you plan to use it in. The higher the CFM, the more powerful the device and the larger a room it can fill with cool air. The bigger the room, the higher a CFM you’ll want. If you want to ensure you’re picking the absolutely perfect CFM rating for the space you want to cool, determine the square footage of the room in question, multiple it by the height of your ceilings, and then divide that number by two. The resulting number is the ideal CFM for your entire space.
  • Portability: While plenty of evaporative coolers are designed for mounting in a window or the side of your home. However, there is also plenty of evaporative coolers that are designed to be moved from room to room rather than remaining anchored in one spot. For those wanting to travel with or move around their evaporative cooler, the size and weight of it should be carefully considered. Also look for a portable model with wheels, as this makes even heavier coolers much easier to transport in between rooms.
  • Outdoor Use: Evaporative coolers aren’t just for indoor use. While not all models will function out of doors, there are quite a few that you can interchangeably use inside and outside your home if desired. Some are even designed specifically for outdoor use only. If you are going to use your evaporative cooler outdoors or in a large area, getting a model with a large, powerful fan is the best option. Look for a more portable, preferably wheeled, option if you plan to move your cooler between your home and yard quite often.

Top Pick: Hessaire MC37M Portable Evaporative Cooler

square gray evaporative cooler with wheels

The Hessaire MC37M Portable Evaporative Cooler features 3,100 CFM of evaporative cooling power and three fan-speed settings to ensure ideal distribution throughout your space. This easy-to-operate evaporative cooler also sports three-sided high-density cooling pads for increased evaporative surface area, leading to more cool air for you to enjoy. Additionally, this model features small wheels on the base so you can easily move it in between different rooms in your home as needed.

Top Pick

Hessaire MC37M Portable Evaporative Cooling Fan, Indoor/Outdoor High Temp Low Humidity Environments, 3100 CFM, 950 sq. ft., 3-Speed Fan, 59 dB, Gray

This evaporative cooler offers plenty of cooling power and is great for indoor or outdoor use. It's also very simple to operate.

Most Portable: hOmeLabs Evaporative Cooler with 3 Wind Modes

tall, narrow, white evaporative cooler with built-in LED control panel on top

The hOmeLabs Portable Evaporative Cooler is a versatile device that offers three different wind modes and three different speeds, depending on your needs. Use either the built-in, clearly marked LED control pad or the included remote control to change the settings as desired. It also has a built-in timer for overnight use and low water level indicator that will make noise when it needs a refill. This sleek unit features a space-saving design that nonetheless has a 10-liter capacity tank. It weighs under 18.5 pounds, making it a breeze to travel with. The four wheels on the bottom of the device make it that much easier to transport or move from room to room as needed. The Honeywell Portable Evaporative Cooler is built to cool the immediate area up to 200 square feet away, making it a great cooling option with an attractive price tag to boot.

Best Portable

Honeywell 194 CFM Compact Spot Fan & Humidifier, Indoor Portable Evaporative Air Cooler, (White)

This evaporative cooler features a wheeled, portable design as well as multiple modes and easy control.

Best for Outdoor Use: Honeywell CO48PM Evaporative Air Cooler

small, compact, dark gray evaporative cooler with small wheels

This Honeywell Evaporative Air Cooler is suitable for areas up to 610 square feet and features a powerful, weatherproof design that is perfect for outdoor use. This evaporative cooler is equipped with an ice compartment, large water tank, and optional continuous water supply functionality. The Honeywell CO48PM Evaporative Air Cooler also features powerful 14-inch fan blades for excellent airflow and a long, outdoors-safe GFCI power cord, making it a great choice.

Best for Outdoor Use

Honeywell Powerful 1062 CFM Outdoor Portable Evaporative Cooler with Fan, Long-Lasting Honeycomb Pads on 3 Sides & Copper Continuous Water Supply Connection

This evaporative cooler offers great power, an impressive weatherproof design, and powerful fan blades for excellent cool-air dispersion.

Most Compact: Hessaire MC18M Portable Evaporative Cooler

white, square evaporative cooler with a pale gray base and black wheels

The Hessaire MC18M Portable Evaporative Cooler can provide 1,300 CFM of cool airflow covering spaces up to 500 square feet. This evaporative cooler features a powerful adjustable-speed fan and a large water tank that will last for up to 3 to 4 hours of cooling. This Hessaire Portable Evaporative Cooler also sports a light and portable design and is durably constructed, making it a nice choice for smaller spaces.

Also Consider

Hessaire MC18M Portable Evaporative Cooling Fan, Indoor/Outdoor Low Humidity Environments, 1300 CFM, 500 sq. ft., 2-Speed Fan, 53.4 dB, White

This evaporative cooler can cover up to 500 square feet with evaporative cooling and features an adjustable-speed fan as well as a large water tank.

Most Quiet: BREEZEWELL 3-IN-1 Ultra-Quiet Evaporative Air Cooler

rectangular white evaporative cooler blowing air and leaves, next to its remote control and two ice crystal boxes

The BREEZEWELL Evaporative Air Cooler can be a useful addition to your home in many ways. It serves not only as an air cooler but as a humidifier or a fan as well. Whichever of the three modes you use, this cooler is highly maneuverable to hit just the right angle you need to cool down. Tilt it up to 65 degrees horizontally and vertically, or use the rolling wheels and portable handle to roll it from room to room as needed. Between the 12-hour automatic timer and ultra-quiet operating noise (as low as 55 decibels, which is considered whisper-quiet), this model is an ideal choice to keep in your room overnight. It also visibly and audibly alerts you when the water tank is running low, so you’ll know when to refill it. 

Zachary McCarthy Zachary McCarthy
Zachary McCarthy is a freelance contributor to LifeSavvy. He has a bachelor's degree in English from James Madison University and experience in blogging, copywriting, and WordPress design and development. In his free time, he can be found frying up Tangsuyuk or watching Korean films and MMA events. Read Full Bio »
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