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Albuquerque VetCo

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Swamp Cooler of Death! Or At Least Allergies

Do you have your swamp cooler up and running yet? We keep having the occasional cool day but most days are hot. Did you know that improper servicing of your evaporative cooler could be cause you and your pet health issues?

You know that musty smell that fills your house when you first turn on your swamp cooler? We usually just think that is dust but it could be mold.

Swamp coolers have big pads on the sides of them that get wet with water and then air is pulled through those pads and cooled down. That cool moist air is blown through our house and cools us down, as well as adding a little bit of humidity to our air. It feels great. The problem is, it is easy for a pad to develop mold in it over the winter and as you blow that cold air you are also blowing mold.

Breathing mold can cause things like:

  • Allergies
  • Asthma
  • Infection
  • Difficulty breathing
  • Lethargy
  • Chronic lung issues

Things To Check for During Swamp Cooler Maintenance

  • Look for visible mold on the pads. Even if it is not time to replace your pads, if you see mold, you need to replace them
  • Replace the pads according to the manufacturer recommended schedule, if not sooner.
  • Hose out the pan of the swamp cooler to clean out any debris that developed over the previous year.
  • If you see signs of mold anywhere on your cooler, thoroughly clean the cooler before turning it on.
  • Wet down the pads and rinse any dust and debris before you turn on the system.
  • Give your pads a sniff after they have been wet, if they smell moldy, they probably are, and it is time to get new ones.

Though doing a thorough mold check does take a little more effort, it is worth it for your health and the health of your pets.

If you notice your pets having any breathing issues, bring them in to your Albuquerque vet immediately for an evaluation. If they have had an allergic or asthma reaction, if addressed early enough it can prevent it from developing into a chronic condition.