There are lots of ways to keep your home cool during summer. Evaporative cooling is one of the most affordable and effective solutions, but what do you do when your system isn’t quite cutting it?

If your evaporative cooler isn’t providing the cooling power you need, you may be considering upgrading to refrigerated air conditioning. That sounds easy, but making the switch may not be as simple as you think.

In this article, we’ll see if you can convert evaporative cooling to refrigerated air conditioning, and whether there are any alternative options available.

Evaporative cooling unit on the roof of a house | Air Conditioning Doctor

Can You Convert Evaporative Cooling to Refrigerated Cooling?

No, you cannot.

While evaporative cooling and refrigerated air conditioning both use ducts in the ceiling, evaporative coolers move a higher volume of air. This means they use large diameter outlets and ductwork that’s unsuitable for refrigerated air conditioning.

Similarly, the ceiling vents used for evaporative coolers and reverse cycle air conditioning need to be located in different positions to maximise efficiency. If you’re upgrading from evaporative to refrigerated cooling, your installer will need to remove the ceiling vents and patch any holes left behind.

Can I Install Both Evaporative Cooling and Ducted Air Conditioning?

Yes, absolutely! Ducted air conditioning and evaporative cooling are two very different technologies. And, while they can’t operate using the same ductwork, there’s no reason you can’t have both types of systems in your home.

The challenge is that both systems take up space in the ceiling cavity. The ductwork and internal components required for both types of cooling may not fit inside your ceiling. You’ll need to talk to an air conditioning technician to find out if you have sufficient space to install two sets of ductwork.

If you don’t have enough ceiling space, your installer may be able to place air conditioning ducts under the floor, but this depends on the construction of your home.


Can I Run an Evaporative Cooler and a Reverse Cycle Air Conditioner at the Same Time?

No. There’s no point in running evaporative cooling while your reverse cycle air conditioning is turned on.

This is because evaporative cooling requires you to open doors and windows to create airflow and prevent buildups of humid air. On the other hand, refrigerative air conditioners work best when you shut your doors and windows to contain the conditioned air.

How to Make Your Evaporative Cooler More Effective

It is easy to learn how and when to use evaporative cooling to maximise its effectiveness. We recommend the following:

  1. Use evaporative cooling on hot, dry days – Evaporative coolers perform better on hot days when the relative humidity is low. Your cooler will perform best at a relative humidity of 50% or less. Ducted reverse cycle air conditioning may be the better choice if you live in a humid area.
  2. Keep doors and windows open – It’s important to understand that evaporative cooling uses air flow to lower the temperature inside your house. While running the system, you need to open internal doors and some external windows. This creates cross-ventilation and lowers the internal temperature.
  3. Invest in a yearly evaporative air conditioner service – Your evaporative cooler is a simple system with very few moving parts. But components like the filter pads wear out during normal use, and they may become clogged by calcium and mineral deposits. Annual servicing ensures your evaporative cooler is always performing at its best.

Improve Your Evaporative Cooler with Servicing from the Air Conditioning Doctor!

Staying comfortable during the Adelaide summer is never easy. When you’re dealing with hot and dry conditions, evaporative and refrigerated cooling are both excellent ways to keep cool.

While evaporative coolers are affordable, efficient and very effective, they don’t work in the same way as refrigerated air conditioning. That means you can’t expect to get the same cooling power from your system.

If you want to improve the performance of your evaporative cooling system, yearly servicing from the Air Conditioning Doctor is your best bet!
The Air Conditioning Doctor is a team of experienced technicians who work throughout Adelaide. We service, maintain and repair evaporative cooling and refrigerated air conditioning systems. If your evaporative cooler isn’t cutting it, our servicing program will ensure you’re always getting the best performance possible.

Contact us today to book an air conditioner service in Adelaide with the Air Conditioning Doctor!