Commercial Portable Air Conditioners: Water-Cooled vs. Air-Cooled

Commercial portable air conditioners provide many businesses with cool and comfortable working conditions in times and places otherwise thought impossible. They keep both workers and equipment working at their maximum efficiency and are fantastic to have around in case of a cooling emergency. If you’re considering using a commercial portable A/C unit for your business, you’ll want to know more about your options.

While scouring the web, you may have noticed that there are both water-cooled and air-cooled units to choose from. In order to determine which of these would be best for your business needs, let’s explore the pros and cons of each type.

Water-Cooled Commercial Portable Air Conditioners

As you may have guessed, water-cooled commercial A/C units use water to cool down the warm air that’s been pulled in. Also, as the unit works hard to cool down the space, it heats up. All of this heat is also dissipated by the incoming water.

Water Cooled Commercial Portable Air Conditioners

Pros:   Water-cooled commercial portable air conditioners are slightly more energy efficient than air-cooled units, typically using less amperage to operate. If your building has a chiller system, water cooled units are the most efficient option. They do not require any ducting, making them completely self-contained units. Because you don’t have to route the warm air out of the room, installation is fairly minimal. You need simply to plug it in and connect it to a water supply.

Cons:   Water-cooled units require a water supply as well as a place to drain condensate. Because of their continual need for water, these units can run up your bills and end up being very expensive to operate. If you have a chiller system, however, this may not be the case.

Questions to Ask Yourself:
  1. Do you have an available water line in the area you want to cool?
  2. Does your building run on a chiller system?
  3. Is energy efficiency of great importance to you?
  4. Is portability of great importance to you?
  5. Is there absolutely no way to vent the warm air out of the room through ducting?

If the answer to most or all of these questions is yes, you’ll want to invest in a water-cooled commercial portable air conditioner.

Air-Cooled Commercial Portable Air Conditioners

Air-cooled commercial A/C units work much like traditional air conditioning systems. The cold air coming from the unit must be routed where it’s needed, while the warm air being pulled in must be routed out of the area. Air-cooled portable A/Cs are the more widely used option, because more often than not, neither a chiller system nor continuous water supply is available.

Air Cooled Commercial Portable Air Conditioners

Pros:   Air-cooled units can handle many industrial environments and do not require the use of a water supply. When it comes to cooling power, air-cooled units have a wider range to choose from. You can locate air-cooled units with a cooling power up to 120,000 BTU/hr, while the highest cooling power found in a water-cooled unit is close to 60,000 BTU/hr.

Cons:   Air-cooled units must be ducted so that the warm air is removed from the area you are cooling. This can require some configuring on your part. Many people duct the unit and vent it through the ceiling tiles.

Questions to Ask Yourself:
  1. Do you have a way to vent warm air out of the room?
  2. Do you need an exceptionally powerful cooling unit exceeding 35,000 BTU/hr?
  3. Is your business not equipped with a chiller system?

If the answer to all of these questions is yes, you’ll want to invest in an air-cooled commercial portable air conditioner.

The Main Difference Between Water & Air-Cooled

The main difference between air-cooled and water-cooled commercial portable air conditioners is how they manage to dissipate the heat in the room. Both pull in warm air but air-cooled units route this air out of the room while water-cooled units dispel the heat with incoming water.

Hopefully you now know which option would be the best cooling solution for your business. If you still have lingering questions about this technical product, please give one of our product experts a call at 1.800.297.6076.

Learn More:


About Author

Sarah is a savvy urbanite with small town roots. As a foodie, wine lover & adventurer, she loves the bustling city and the great outdoors equally. Her motto is that you don’t have to sacrifice comfort, convenience, or fresh air for small-scale urban living.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *