Portable Evaporative Cooler vs. Portable AC – Which is Best for Your Restaurant

portable evaporative coolerA high-quality restaurant experience that keeps customers coming back for more and spreading the word about your restaurant begins with comfort. No matter how good the food is, or how exceptional the service is, if a customer is sweating and miserable, it will diminish their experience. Kitchens get hot and that heat may carry out into the dining room and if it’s summertime, the inside of your restaurant as well as your patio may be hotter than you and your guests would prefer. There are a few ways to cool specific areas such as a dining room or restaurant patio, including portable AC units and portable evaporative coolers. Below, we compare both options to help you determine which is best for your restaurant’s cooling needs. 

Restaurant Cooling with Portable AC Units

Portable AC units operate by pulling in warm air, cooling it by using a refrigerant and then distributing it back into the room. Portable ACs need adequate venting and condensation removal to operate safely and efficiently. They are closed systems that operate better in confined spaces that don’t release the cooled air so they are not ideal for outside use on restaurant patios. When used outside, they will work much harder and less efficiently which is why they are typically not used for outdoor applications. Generally speaking, portable AC units use more energy and therefore cost more money to operate. 

Portable Evaporative Cooler for Restaurants

A portable evaporative cooler works well in low-humidity areas by evaporating water into the air, naturally and efficiently cooling the surrounding area. Evaporative coolers draw air into the machine and then pass that air over water-saturated pads via a fan and motor assembly. The water in the pads then evaporates, reducing the air temperature by 15°- to 40°F and then distributing that cool air to the surrounding area. Unlike AC units that use coolants and chemicals, portable evaporative coolers are an environmentally-friendly, extremely effective, and energy-efficient method of cooling for restaurants.


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