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How Much Does an Outdoor Mist System Cost?

Mist System Prices

The past few summers have brought some of the hottest temperatures on record to the United States and beyond. While air conditioners make indoor conditions bearable during the dog days of summer, remaining cooped up inside the house is hardly an ideal solution. If you want to beat the heat and spend time outdoors, consider installing an outdoor mist system. These systems deliver microscopic water molecules that lower air temperature by up to 35°.

Outdoor Mist System Options

The basic mechanism of a mist system is simple: water is delivered through tubes and nozzles in a very fine mist…so fine, in fact, that the droplets evaporate in the outdoor air and provide instant cooling. Depending on the type of system and system components, however, the cooling power of atomized water varies. Below are some of the variations possible on an outdoor mist system.

PSI

The pressure that naturally occurs when water passes through tubing and nozzles doesn't generate the tiny water particles associated with maximum evaporative cooling. In order to increase a mist system's pressure (measured in pounds per square inch, or psi), and therefore increase its cooling power, a high pressure pump is needed. For the best cooling results, a high-pressure mist system (between 800 and 1,200 psi; the type used by restaurants and bars) is recommended. Also keep in mind that higher pressure systems result in less residual moisture.

Nozzles and Pumps

PSI isn't the only figure relevant to pump performance. There's also the pump size, measured in gallons per minute (gpm). Larger pumps deliver more water and are capable of feeding more nozzles. But nozzle size (.008, .012, .015, etc.) also plays a role because smaller nozzles have a lower flow rate. For example, a 1 gpm pump may only support 32 standard (.012) nozzles, but it could support more .008 nozzles or fewer .015 nozzles. Another nozzle consideration is humidity. Larger nozzles are associated with more humidity and smaller nozzles with less humidity.

Mist Systems vs. Misting Fans

A mist system consisting of tubing, nozzles, and pumps is best suited to cooling a confined space such as a patio or outdoor eating area. For larger areas, a misting fan, which uses the same cooling technology but can service a larger area thanks to its enhanced air circulation, is best. Misting fans are often used in warehouses and at sporting events.

Kits vs. Custom Systems

Most manufacturers sell misting system packages that contain all the major components (lines, nozzles, and pump) of a basic setup. Another option is to pick and choose individual components and design your own mist system.

Outdoor Mist System Average Costs

  • Outdoor misting kits that rely on line pressure (no pump) start as low as $50 to $150.
  • Mid-pressure pump-based mist systems start at $350 to $500.
  • High-pressure pump-based mist systems start at $1,250 to $2,500 but larger setups could cost $5,000 to $10,000.
  • If hiring a contractor for professional installation, add 30 to 40 percent to the system cost.
  • Misting fans start at $400 to $800 (for smaller, stationary models) but can cost $1,000 to $2,000 (for high-pressure pedestal and industrial models) and as much as $2,000 to $6,000 (for larger, cart-mounted models).

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