How much do you know about HVAC? If you’re like the average American, not much. In fact, many people don’t even know the big differences between furnaces and boilers — yet you probably rely on one or the other to avoid frostbite indoors during chilly winters. Your HVAC system is a literal lifesaver, and worth getting to know. At the very least, these facts can help you dominate at the next trivia night!
- Heatstroke kills 658 Americans each year: This average comes from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and is completely avoidable. Not having access to an air-conditioned environment isn’t just uncomfortable, it can be deadly.
- The NYSE was among the first U.S. buildings with A/C: The New York Stock Exchange got air conditioning in their building in 1903, making it one of the first American buildings to have such a luxury. How did people keep cool before that? Cross-breezes, fans and cold drinks (but the heatstroke averages were also much higher).
- Radiant heating is nothing new: It might seem fancy, but the Romans invented it first. They used stone flooring with a variety of heat sources below. This made those famous Roman baths even toastier.
- Old radiators were monsters: The very first radiators were made out of cast iron and weighed an incredible 450 pounds for every square foot. If you think installing a radiator these days is tough work, imagine what it was like decades ago.
- Nearly 65 percent of U.S. homes have A/C: The U.S. Census bureau reveals that around 65 percent of Americans live in a home with air conditioning. That’s 72 million homes. Most of these properties are in the south and in states where the heat is unbearable without it. Everyone else relies on fans and open windows.
- The A/C creator was an MD: Who invented air conditioning as we know it today? Dr. John Gorrie, MD, who created an air conditioner in 1842 to help his patients who medically needed to keep cool. This Floridian doctor got a patent, but in less than a decade died bankrupt after his financiers fell through.
- Thank A/C for no summer break: Before air conditioners became popular, it wasn’t uncommon for businesses to shut down for about two months in the summer. Not just schools, either, but business offices and shops, too. However, with the advent of air conditioning, we can now work year-round. This is the one time when A/C didn’t do you any favors!
- Insulation boosts efficiency by up to 30 percent: Want to make your HVAC system work better, lighten your carbon footprint and lower utility bills? Make sure you have proper insulation, especially around exterior doors and windows (and any window A/C units). This can make your system up to 30 percent more efficient and save you a bundle.
Your HVAC system goes above and beyond for your comfort every day of the year. Return the favor with an annual inspection. Call Complete Heating & Air Conditioning to schedule an appointment for an HVAC installation, repair or maintenance check.