Looking Back at the History of Air Conditioning

Air conditioning is like electricity and indoor plumbing—it’s hard to imagine modern existence without it. However, air conditioning itself is not a particularly modern idea. Of course the air conditioner of today is a far cry from the early machines that relied on ice and fans, but the basic principle of air conditioning is hundreds of years old. Whether you’re looking for AC repair in Murfreesboro or buying a new AC system, this brief look at the history of air conditioning is a fun way for you to learn more about one of our most important modern appliances.

Looking Back at the History of Air Conditioning Early Discoveries
The groundwork for the eventual air conditioner was laid more than 250 years ago when Benjamin Franklin and Cambridge University professor John Hadley discovered that evaporation of alcohol and other volatile liquids can cool down an object enough to freeze water. This fundamental principle is still at the heart of all air conditioning systems.

Carrier’s Apparatus
In 1902, Willis Carrier invents the Apparatus for Treating Air for a lithographing and publishing company in Brooklyn, NY. Carrier’s machine blows air over cold coils to control room temperature and humidity. The machine is designed to keep paper from wrinkling and keep ink aligned. As demand grows for Carrier’s Apparatus, he establishes the Carrier Air Conditioning Company of America.

AC Hits Home
Air conditioning is available in homes for the first time in 1914. The very first residential AC system was in the Minneapolis mansion of Charles Gates and was approximately seven feet high, six feet wide, and 20 feet long. Oddly enough, this giant residential AC unit was possibly never used because no one ever lived in the house.

The Next Chapter
The future of air conditioning can be summed up in two words: Energy efficiency. Thanks to federal standards that went into effect in 2006, air conditioners must achieve a minimum energy efficiency rating (SEER 13). The good news is that plenty of AC manufacturers exceed these standards, providing even greater energy savings. Your Murfreesboro HVAC installation company can help you pick out the most energy-efficient AC system for your home.