Welcome to the Port-A-Cool Blog!

Hard at work - a customer testimonial on evaporative cooling solution

Posted by Melodie Elliott

Fri, Jul 18, 2014 @ 03:52 PM

We love hearing from our customers. Hunter Austin, Operations Manager at Fastenal Manufacturing sent us the following upate.  Thanks, Hunter!

"Our Port-A-Cool evaporative cooler is doing exactly what the sales representative said it would and maybe even a little more. We were struggling with such a large area – 30,000+ square feet — trying to keep the temperature at a safe working level. With our Port-A-Cool evaporative coolers we’re not going to have that issue any longer! 

It’s so easy to operate! It took only a few minutes to figure out optimal ways of running it, which is also a nice feature. It’s as easy as plug and play!  It’s so nice to be able to move it wherever its needed and not just stay stationary and it only takes one person to move it. 

We were able to run a direct water line to the machine with no issues and if we aren’t able to run a line to it due to the area it’s in, it is simple to fill the LARGE reservoir and go. We will definitely be purchasing a second, third and fourth Port-A-Cool evaporative coolers for our areas. Thanks for your great product and on point customer service!"

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 We'd love to hear YOUR stories. 

 

Topics: Evaporative Cooler, customer testimonials, ease of use, cooling solutions

Local Roots - at the "Center" of it all...

Posted by Melodie Elliott

Fri, Jul 11, 2014 @ 04:48 PM

Next year, Port-A-Cool will celebrate its 25th anniversary.  At the ‘center’ of the company’s rich history is its involvement in the community it calls home in Center, Texas.  Center is located in the piney woods of East Texas in Shelby County. From the Rotary Club to the Shelby County Chamber of Commerce,  Port-A-Cool takes pride in helping the community in a variety of civic and philanthropic ways. 

This weekend, festival participants will keep cool at the 25th annual What-A-Melon festival with our portable evaporative coolers.  Our own Misty Wilburn talks about the festival in this interview:

http://www.kltv.com/story/25980894/25th-annual-what-a-melon-festival-starts-thursday-in-center

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Criteria for selecting the RIGHT evaporative cooler for you

Posted by Melodie Elliott

Fri, Jul 04, 2014 @ 01:39 PM

If you are looking to purchase an evaporative cooler, there are several things to take into consideration before making your purchase.  Here are some criteria to consider:

Size. Evaporative coolers are available in a variety of sizes, making it simple to customize cooling for both indoor and outdoor spaces.  Units are typically available to accommodate areas ranging from 500 to 4,000 square feet.  To cool even larger areas, two or more evaporative coolers can be used together to create a comfortable environment.

 Portability and easy control functions. Portability is an enormous benefit of evaporative coolers. With heavy-duty casters, evaporative cooling units can be easily moved from smooth to rough terrain by one person.  Water hose connections also enhance mobility, as there is no need to stay near a faucet in order to refill the water reservoir.  Look for a model that gives you the most flexibility and ease of usage.

Manufacturer. When researching and selecting the best evaporative cooler for your needs, a great place to begin is with the manufacturer. Choose a company that manufacturers their own parts in reputable facilities.  Be certain to understand the kinds of pads and cooling technology that is utilized in the evaporative cooler you select. This extra research upfront will provide peace-of-mind in ensuring product longevity. 

Preventing heat stress on the job to ensure worker safety and productivity

Posted by Melodie Elliott

Fri, Jun 27, 2014 @ 09:08 AM

REF-HEATSTRESSWHITEPAPER

Guest Author:  Scott Jacobs, PE, Director of Engineering at Port-A-Cool, LLC

Recently, I had the pleasure of providing a white paper to Plant Services magazine. Here, please find the opening preview to the white paper:

Many industries face challenges when it comes to providing a cool working environment, particularly in heat-susceptible areas such as industrial plants, warehouses, manufacturing facilities and outdoor jobsites. These extreme-heat situations can impact worker safety and productivity, and certainly, the company’s bottom-line. Without adequate cooling, workers are put in danger while equipment and manufactured products are at an increased risk for failure.

According to the Occupational Safety and Health Association (OSHA), thousands of workers become sick from occupational heat exposure each year.  However, heat-related illnesses are preventable. “The best way to prevent heat-related illness is to make the work environment cooler,” OSHA states.  The dilemma becomes how to effectively and economically cool large, open areas where high-ambient outdoor temperatures and heat-generating machinery are factors.

 Weighing the drawbacks of typical cooling methods 

Traditionally, air conditioning (A/C) is a go-to cooling method.  However, in large open spaces, the first impediment is the inability to close the space off and contain the inside air to achieve maximum cooling. Areas where outside doors will be open, such as in a warehouse, allow air to escape and render A/C an impractical solution.   Another drawback is that air conditioners require compressors and a place to ventilate the heat generated from the compressor.  This limits the mobility of an A/C unit given the fixed-ductwork and adds another point of heat generation.  Harsh refrigerants and energy consumption are other downfalls.  Refrigerants are an integral part of air conditioning systems to emit cool air, and A/C can pull a great deal of energy that translates to more energy expense.

Fans – both oscillating and ceiling options – seem like a quick, inexpensive fix to cooling workers and machinery. However, fans simply circulate stagnate air throughout the space. The air is not chilled in any capacity and cannot reach all areas of the large space to be cooled. In fact, industrial ceiling fans seem to be particularly more effective in the winter to improve heating operations by giving airflow to warm air. 

An energy-efficient and cost-effective approach

OSHA provides clear guidelines for heat-related illness prevention, listing cooling fans as one of the top “engineering controls” for reducing workers’ exposure to heat. 

In this white paper, Here, we review the efficiencies of utilizing an evaporative cooler.

 

Topics: evaporative cooling, heat, heat stress, OSHA, evap vs ac, Port-A-Cool, worker productivity, cooling fans, e

It's Official - Summer Starts Tomorrow

Posted by Melodie Elliott

Fri, Jun 20, 2014 @ 08:30 AM

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Yep, tomorrow is the official start of summer with the beginning of the summer solstice.  That also means that it is the day with the most hours of sunlight during the whole year.  What will you do this weekend to take in all that sunshine?

Besides sunny skies, when we think about the summer we often think ‘hotsoaring summer resized 600 temperatures.’  However, it is more than just what the mercury reads on the thermometer to give us the perception of heat.  The heat index and relative humidity can have a huge impact. We want to have fun in the sun, but we also want to stay cool and comfortable. 

We know using an air conditioner is impractical outdoors, but did you know an evaporative cooler actually works best with a supply of outside ambient air to deliver a temperature reduction by as much as 30° Fahrenheit?  While evaporative coolers achieve significant temperature drops in more arid climates and drier spaces, they provide relief from the heat in any climate.  For example, in regions where relative humidity reaches 70% at midday with temperatures over 90 degrees Fahrenheit, evaporative coolers have been shown to offer noteworthy relief. Given that relative humidity is lowest in the afternoon when the temperature is at its highest, an effective evaporative cooling scenario is achievable.

 

p chart resized 600Example: Evaporative coolers have been proven to deliver a temperature reduction from 8 to 10 degrees in the morning in the highest humidity regions (Miami, New Orleans, or Boston), and  up to 12 to 15 degrees later in the day when the  relative humidity goes down as the temperature goes up.

*Also explained by psychrometrics. See the Psychrometric Chart at left.

 

With units to accommodate 500 square feet up to 4,000 square feet, take a look at the unit  that may be right for your home or business space to achieve effective spot cooling this summer. You don’t have to limit your activity in the heat when you have the right cooling accessory!

Topics: Evaporative Cooler, Summer, heat index, Psychrometrics, psychometrics, psychromatic chart, relative humidity

An evaporative cooler is just a fancy way of saying ‘swamp cooler’ – right?

Posted by Melodie Elliott

Fri, Jun 13, 2014 @ 03:45 PM

In a word – No. Today’s evaporative coolers are not yester year’s swamp coolers.

While evaporative coolers use the same general principles as antiquated swamp coolers, the technology of modern-day evaporative coolers has evolved to become much more energy efficient and effective.  It can be said that an evaporative cooler’s operation hinges squarely on the pad technology.  A quality pad, manufactured in a trustworthy facility by expertly trained technicians, is an important element to selecting a long-lasting evaporative cooler.

 

pads resized 600The Port-A-Cool difference is in our proprietary KÜÜL® pads rigid cooling media that provide maximum longevity and cooling efficiency. Designed and manufactured in the USA, KÜÜL® pads are available in a variety of sizes and flute angles to fit almost any evaporative cooler or cooling application. The KÜÜL® pad stands out against other pads in the marketplace due to its advanced curing process and resin technology.  Utilizing the highest-quality virgin kraft paper, each sheet is cured prior to block formation with the highest resin content in the industry.

That is the technological overview.  To putpump and pad illustration resized 600 it in layman’s terms –basically the interaction between air and water is maximized for superior cooling. The result is a highly-effective, energy-efficient cooling method that uses the same amount of electricity used to run standard household appliances.  Operating for pennies an hour, this is spot cooling that won’t break the bank! 

Topics: Evaporative Cooler, Kuul pads, heat, desert cooler, swamp cooler

King of the Grill - a few stats and a nod to dad

Posted by Melodie Elliott

Fri, Jun 06, 2014 @ 04:07 PM

When it comes to the household, many purchasing decisions relative to appliances or décor can be attributed to the female persuasion.  But when it comes to the grill, according to the HPBA Barbecue Lifestyle, Usage & Attitude Study, it is undoubtedly the man’s domain.

  • The male head (63 percent) most often makes the decision to cook, lights the grill (77 percent) and cooks (72 percent) on the charcoal/wood grills.
  • Across the board, males are most likely to make the decision to purchase a grill (69 percent)

When it comes to utensils, well:

  • Among all grill owners, the most popular utensils are long-handled tongs (72 percent), grill-cleaning brushes (68 percent), long-handled fork (60 percent) and long-handled spatulas (54 percent).

 

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 What about accessories for the griller to make the experience more pleasant? The person sweating at the grill could certainly use an evaporative cooler nearby to provide cooler temps (by as much as 30°F) when they are slaving over the hot grill. The Cyclone is a particular favorite of many homeowners looking for a unit to roll where they need it.  Grill-side, pool-side or on the patio, the Port-A-Cool Cyclone helps make all outdoor summer activities more bearable when the mercury is rising. 

 

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*Don’t forget Father’s Day is just a week away – for the dad who is indeed the ‘king of the grill’, who has everything or who just loves to work outdoors, a portable evaporative cooler could be a great option.  They can even set it up in the garage or their mancave space that isn’t well suited for air-conditioning. You may just be dad’s favorite for giving the truly ‘cool’ gift!

Topics: Evaporative Cooler, Outdoor Living, Cyclone, Father's Day, Port-A-Cool, HPBA, barbecue, grilling, grill

Party Time - Prepping for Outdoor Graduation Soirees

Posted by Melodie Elliott

Fri, May 30, 2014 @ 03:35 PM

It’s celebration time for families with graduates embarking on their exit from high school or college. That also means that party planning is underway.  Many looking for a venue find their own backyard is just right for celebrating their graduate’s achievements.  Luckily there are a plethora of great sources of inspiration for party ideas, décor and set-up on social media and magazine sites such as Better Homes & Gardens.

Grad party resized 600When planning an outdoor celebration, certainly, Mother Nature can often have an impact.  Here are some tips for pre-party prep:

  • Tent set-up – If you have limited covered patio space, consider putting up a small tent.  Many affordable ones are available at mass merchants.  Having even  a small one or two will offer needed respite from the sun
  • Bug control – Be sure to stock up on citronella or other mosquito deterring products to keep the bite away
  • Keep it cool – fans blow stagnant warm air and misters can be unpleasantly drenching.  Using an evaporative cooler will help provide cool air that could lower temperatures by as much as 30° degrees F.  Smaller units are easy to find at home improvement stores and online, or consider renting a unit for the weekend.
  • Lighting for evening hours – Many afternoon parties linger into the evening.  Invest in a few strategically placed solar lights to add décor and lighting ambiance as guests stay into the evening.

Topics: Evaporative Cooler, Port-A-Cool, graduation, better homes and gardens, outdoor parties

Paying tribute this Memorial Day weekend

Posted by Melodie Elliott

Fri, May 23, 2014 @ 02:21 PM

The three-day Memorial Day weekend marks the beginning of summer for many people.

It is a great time to enjoy friends and family, fire up the grill and celebrate outdoors. However, it is important that we remember the real purpose of the holiday by paying tribute to the U.S. Service Members who lost their lives.  Be sure to take a moment of silence whatever you are doing at 3:00 p.m. to observe the National Moment of Remembrance. 

 

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Port-A-Cool would like to pay tribute to those who gave their lives for our freedom, and also give thanks to the active men and women who serve today.  Port-A-Cool is proud to be an approved vendor with the Department of Defense to provide evaporative cooling products at bases in all 50 states and around the world.  According to Jim Altom, long-time Port-A-Cool salesman to the military sector, evaporative coolers were initially thought to be a creature comfort for the military used in areas where air conditioning was impractical or cost prohibitive such as mess halls, kitchens and barracks.  But they quickly became a necessity with troop deployment in ‘hostile weather environments’ that presented real heat stress concerns. Given the small amount of electricity taken to operate the units, the portable evaporative cooler became an essential tool for rehabbing heat-taxed military members.

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Today, Port-A-Cool units are available using the Milstrip and many are available in depots for immediate shipment.  Military members can contact Nancy Thomas (at nancy.thomas@dla.mil) to determine what is in inventory and available for immediate shipment.

We are proud of to be committed to U.S.A. manufacturing of our cooling media and the ability to support the troops.

Topics: evaporative cooling, Outdoor Living, Military, Port-A-Cool, Memorial Day

Port-A-Cool Islander™ Enhances Seasonal Patio Profitability

Posted by Melodie Elliott

Fri, May 16, 2014 @ 01:15 PM

Empty seats at a restaurant or bar equals lost revenue.  Each summer, many establishments lose patio profits due to soaring temperatures. Now, thanks to the Port-A-Cool Islander,™ creating outdoor comfort that translates into revenue is a breeze. 

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The Islander is a ‘first-of-its-kind’ product to lower outdoor temperatures by as much as 30°F with a unique design that projects 360° of cooled air in spaces up to 600 square feet. Patrons up to 14 feet away will feel the cool breeze without any moisture -- a vast improvement over the drenching affects of a mister or fans that simply blow hot air.  Additionally, adjustable louvers and a variable speed fan ensure the Islander provides the right amount of air delivered where it is desired.

This weekend, restaurantNRA show and hospitality owners/management will have the opportunity to experience the cooling power of the Islander in Chicago.  Port-A-Cool will showcase the Islander at booth #1845 in the South Hall of the McCormick Place during The National Restaurant Association’s Show & International Wine, Spirits, & Beer Event taking place May 17-20, 2014.

We’re anxious for this industry to see the Islander in action.  To kick-off the coming season, we are excited to announce that we will be giving away an Islander to one lucky winner in May.  All you have to do is go to our Facebook entry page here:  https://a.pgtb.me/SLVS73

To increase your odds of winning, be sure to share our Facebook page with your friends!

Good luck and we’ll see you on the patio! 

 *To learn more about the Islander features, click here: www.port-a-cool.com/islander.html


 

Topics: Evaporative Cooler, heat, patio, Islander, Port-A-Cool, #NRAShow2014