Bring On The Heat
The human body can only bear so much heat. So creating a bearable human habitat has been an ongoing concern since ancient times. Egyptians hung moistened reeds in the windows for the breeze to blow through. In Roman times, wealthy citizens circulated water through the walls of their homes with help from aqueducts. Chinese inventor Ding Huan built a water-powered rotary fan ten feet in diameter for the royal palace.
But still, most of the common folk were hiding in the shade and fanning themselves with whatever was available.
A Current of Change
Then came electricity. Finally, in 1902 New York inventor Willis Carrier, in an attempt to control the humidity as much as cool the air in the printing factory where he worked, built the first air conditioning system. Over the next two decades, Carrier continued to improve the operation and size of his invention. In the thirties theaters, businesses, and even train cars began to be cooled with air conditioning units.
Slowly, this indulgent comfort came into homes. As is often the case, only the wealthy could afford such a luxury at first, but as improvements in product and manufacturing techniques improved, so did economic availability.
Coming of Age
Especially in the hot and humid climate of the south, air conditioning has radically changed the quality of life and enabled many to enjoy the tropical climate.
In 1965 only around 10% of U.S. homes had air conditioning systems. By 2007, the number increased to 86%. There is very little new construction that does not incorporate AC/Heating units in the building plans. Older buildings can be fitted with window units or modified for a central unit.
Your Comfort Zone