Fore score and lots of years ago, there were a lot more sweaty Americans in July. Modern HVAC was not a common amenity until the 20th century, and only the rich could afford the inefficient systems that were around. The use and abundance of modern day A/C and climate control is a pleasantry of life that many before us did not experience. As our summer memories set in, it’s worth remembering how the indoor cool down came to be.
In the US, the first electric fans began appearing in home in the early 1900s. But attempts to keep cool date back to ancient Rome, where the wealthy circulated cool water through their homes using the aquaduct systems, an emperor built a mountain of snow (imported by donkeys), and hand fans were all the rage.
The real breakthough came with Nikola Tesla’s development of current motors and oscillating fans.
Then, in 1902, 25 year old Willis Carrier invented the first modern AC system. The first design was not made for human comfort, but rather humidity control at a printing factory. After it’s introduction into the Rivoli Theatre in Times Square, the purpose changed, and the summer blockbuster was born. People would crowd the theatres on hot summer days to use the air-conditioned space.
The spread of A/C in commercial and factory use spread like wildfire, but in 1965, only 10% of residences had AC. This shot up to 86% by 2007. So relax, sit back, and enjoy the AC. We’ve come a long way from ice in our beds or hiring handmaids to fan us in summers…Thank you Willis Carrier.
If you are looking to update your old unit, call A/C Masters today!