Swamp (Evaporative) Cooler Maintenance
This page will cover specific
issues that I have had to deal with regarding my
evaporative (swamp) cooler.
For a information
on how to winterize your swamp cooler, please go to
If your cooler is blowing hot
air, please go to
The type of evaporative cooler I
have is the Champion Master Cool, Model ADA71.
It was purchased May, 2011 at Lowes for $629.
Replacing the Float Valve
If you are looking for information on the best float
valve on the market for your swamp cooler, you can
stop looking now. There isn't one.
I have spent hours searching on the
web for the best float valve that will actually cut
off the water and not leak. I would spend big
bucks to have a float valve that lasted more than
They just do not exist. All there is, are
these cheap valves, made by a couple of companies
and none of them are perfect.
So.....I will discuss the float valve I found that
works best for me and my cooler. And...it has
its faults. And yes, it cost more than others.
The float valve that I am now using is the 1/4 inch,
Dial Evaporative Cooler Bronze Float Valve. Model
4161. Available at the
Depot. I purchased it at the store. Not
online. The valve is pictured to the right.
1/4 in Dial Evaporative Cooler
Bronze Float Valve,
Model 4161 with the long arm
This particular valve comes in
two sizes. One with a long arm and another
with a short arm. The short arm does not work
for my cooler. For some reason, Lowe's only
carries the short arm model. So I had to
travel further to a Home Depot to get the long arm.
|I do not
purchase float valves online because I want
to make sure the valve closes all of the
way. You can only see this in person.
See photo to the right.
If the valve does not close all of the way,
water dribbles into the cooler and
eventually overflows. I do not have a hose
connected to my overflow hole so this water
drips off the roof wasting water.
When purchasing a float valve make sure the
valve closes all of the way
by operating the float arm
All of the other cheaper float
valves I have bought, do not close all of the way.
When I try to install them, sure enough, they do not
cut the water off like they should.
When you purchase a float valve make sure all of the
parts are there. The Home Depot I purchased my
float valves from, had them in a large bin.
Many of the washers and nuts had been removed.
There should be the valve float itself and a washer and nut, which is used to
hold the float valve tight against the cooler wall.
There should also be a sleeve and nut that is
attached to your tubing. This is then attached
to the float. See photo below.
Make sure the washer, nuts, and sleeve are with the
float valve when you purchase it
float valve itself is very simple:
1) Turn off the water to the cooler at the source.
2) Remove the tubing from the end of the valve.
3) Remove the nut and washer on the outside
4) The float valve can now be pulled through wall of
the cooler and removed.
5) Install the new valve reversing the steps above.
Make sure the washer and nut hold your new float
valve firmly in place against the wall of the cooler
with the water spout facing down.
To adjust the arm of the float valve, you just
loosen the screw, and adjust the arm. To tighten,
Where to adjust it? Trial and error.
You want enough water in the reservoir to keep water
being pumped up over the pads. But you do not
want the water overflowing. You have to play
with it until you get it right. I start with
an inch in the reservoir with the pump running.
If I turn off the pump and the water overflows when
all the water comes off the pads, then I need to
adjust the float valve down a little so it cuts the
water off sooner.
Remove water tubing from float valve
and then remove the nut holding the
valve onto the wall of the cooler
After removing the tubing and
mounting nut, the float valve can be
easily removed by pulling it out
spout on valve should be facing downward when
installed. Move float arm by loosening
Use pliers to tighten this screw snuggly.
this particular valve does a good job of
cutting off the water, it has a big problem.
Spurting water from one area.
For some, this would not be a problem.
For my cooler, this spurting of water hits
the blower housing which means I have water
dripping into my ducts.
The fix for this is to take a small rag and
drape it over the spout section of the
float. The spurting water no longer
sprays in the air and into my ducts.
Water always sputters out of one area on
this particular type of float valve.
Cover spout section with a rag to keep water
from getting all over the cooler.
Do not throw away the brass
section of your old float in the trash. You
can get money for them at a recycling center that
buys scrap metal. I just keep the old brass
and copper fittings I acquire until I have a few
pounds of it, then take it in.
Replacing A Damaged Access Panel
September 12, 2016
The access panel on the east side of my
cooler, that I use the most, was damaged
during the winter of 2012. Somehow it
blew off the cooler and off of the roof during some high winds.
This is now the reason why I place a cover
over the whole cooler when it is not being
Access panel secured with bungee cords
New panel to install, resting against cooler
During late August of 2016 the cooler was
not blowing cool air.
As soon as some seasonal rain cleared out, I climbed up on the roof,
why. The stupid panel had blown off
again, but the screws on the bottom at least, kept it
attached this time.
If your cooler
access panels are not closed, you will not have cool
air blowing in your house.
I took the panel off and
used pliers to straighten out the metal as
well as I could and bungee corded around the whole
cooler to keep the panel from coming off
Time to look for a new access panel.
Easier said than done. This type of part is
not easy to find. Since I had the manual I
knew the part number. The manufacturer does
not carry the parts. I found only one
website that carried these parts. That is it.
The website said it had 2 access panels in stock.
I took a chance and ordered a panel. I half
expected a phone call telling me that they really
didn't have the panel and it was no longer
But no, they actually had the panel and I received
it 5 days later. I was very pleased.
Some stick-on weather stripping placed on
new panel to
cushion and prevent rattling in wind
Cooler Parts World
I initially needed to check out the website
because it felt a little "off" to me. It ends
up that this website is part of a larger company
called Appliance Factory Parts out of Denver, CO.
So if you order from them, the e-mail correspondence
will be from them. Something they should
mention on the Cooler Parts World website.
The panel is held in place on the bottom by
two flaps on the edge. However there
is always some rattling in strong winds.
So I placed some stick-on weather stripping
along the long edges to cushion it.
At the very bottom of the opening, where
three screw holes had been drilled to keep
the damaged panel fastened. I covered
these old holes up with a strip of white
duct tape to keep the rain out.
New access panel in place on cooler.
And because I don't want to lose
this panel after spending $67, I placed one screw
with a washer holding the edge at the bottom.
This will hold the top part of the panel in place
under the ledge at the top of the opening. To
access this panel, I only have to remove one screw
instead of the 4 that were holding on the damaged
panel. Oh....and it looks much better now.
To be continued if
I have something new to add...