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HELP on cooling orchid room

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Grandma M

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I grow some of my orchids in an extra bedroom, 10 X 12. In the summer, with all my lights on, it gets quite hot in there. I am thinking about getting a single room cooler, evaporative cooler, swamp cooler, or what ever it may be called. I want to also use it to increase the humidity.

I have AC in my home but that room is the farthst away from the unit and I don't keep the AC on at all times, only when necessary. The home AC is not able to cool the room enough for my plants to do well. Even with all my fans on, it will sometimes get 95, or even more.

Has anyone had experience with this time of cooler? Any suggestions on what type I should buy or what brand?

Any help or suggestion will be appreciated. TIA
 

Kyle

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Whats your outside humidity in the summer? Swamp/evaporative coolers are only effective if the humidity is low.

I was in Toronto last month and noticed a portable evaporative cooler at a store in china town. It was cheap. I wrote down the name and webstie of the manufacture, I can pass it on to you if you would like.

In the past, I have used a window air conditioner. It lowers the humidity, but works.

Kyle
 
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Grandma M

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What type of light?
I have 48inch tubes 4 in a unit. 3 units are T5, and 5 units are T10 bulbs. The T10 are high intensity units. I have them on timers so they are not all on at the same time, hopefully that helps a bit. My plants are on shelved units using 8 shelves. My room faces south.

I have a 30 inch overhead fan and also use a floor fan unit.
 

orcoholic

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It's hard to control heat in such a small room, but I would try putting a fan in a window blowing out. You can also put a fan up at light level behind the lights so that fan pushes the heat to the fan in the window. Kinda like turbocharging.

If there is no window, or if the above is not enough, put a couple oscillating fans so they blow lightly right on the plants. You'll have to water more, but this should be effective. This cools the plants because they transpire and it's like when we get out of a swimming pool when there is a breeze - the evaporation cools us to less than the ambient temp.

In addition to drying the plants out after watering, by blowing the transpiration off the plants, you force the plant to take up more water from the pot where you have all the nutrition, etc. so the plant benefits from getting more of the good stuff.
 

Rick

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Grandma
I totally recommend swamp coolers in green houses or wardian case like enclosures, but in a house your humidity will get so high you will have mold growing on your walls and furniture. So before adding allot of humidification I would try to enclose your growing area in water proof materials. This could be just a matter of painting with mold inhibiting high gloss enamel paints and a linoleum floor.

Wet pad or evaporative systems are available from most good greenhouse supply places. I built my own, but I bought the pad material from Morton's Supply in McMinnville TN. I believe they also sell complete systems that you can check out on their web site.

Sizing the unit is the most difficult part of the job. Also as Kyle said their efficiency drops with increased humidity. However, they are the core cooling and humidification system of major greenhouses down here in the South where we often have 80+ percent humidity and temps in the 90's.

Also allot of your heat is probably from the light ballasts rather than the bulbs. Its probably too late and costly for the retrofit, but relocating the ballasts away from the plants into a ventilated space can reduce heat input considerably.
 

NYEric

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Yes, she says shelves. And No Windows??!!! Welcome to Sing-sing. My high school didn't have windows but if we had that much light ...
 

the jive turkey

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I have 400mh and other lights so my place gets hot. AC runs constantly in summer but hooking up exhaust helps a lot. you could try first to blow a fan into the room and a fan out of the room.

 

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