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The Evolution of Air Conditioning

30 Jun
first air conditioner

Dr John Goorie’s Air Conditioning Invention

Air conditioning is something that can be found in about 100 million homes across the USA but that was not always the case.

There was a time in our history that people were very uncomfortable when the temperature went up due to air conditioning not yet being invented or not yet developed to the point where it could be easily installed into someone’s home.

Let’s take a look at the evolution of the air conditioner:

1840 – A Floridan named Dr John Goorie, proposed that a cooler environment would help decrease disease and make patients more comfortable in their hospital rooms. He tried to accomplish this by having ice shipped in from frozen lakes and streams up north but that became too expensive. Next, he started fiddling around with the concept of an artificial cooling system.

1851 – Dr John Goorie secured a patent for a compressor that was powered by a horse, wind and utilized water or steam. Although his financial backer died before this invention could come to market, the foundation for modern style air and refrigeration was set.

1904 – Willis H Carrier filed a patent for an apparatus for treating air. His system controlled humidity by using cooling coils. He eventually left his job and with six other engineers formed Carrier Engineering Corporation.

1904 – The first time the public was exposed to the comforts of having cooled air was at the St Louis World Fair. Organizers for the fair used mechanical refrigeration to cool the 1,000-seat auditorium at the Missouri State Building.

1922 – 1925 – The first early public cooling systems were in the movie theater where crowds would flock to watch movies while sitting in the comfort of cool air. These early units were heating systems modified with refrigeration equipment (huge sized systems) that cooled to some degree but not evenly. Some areas of the room would be hot and some cold.

1929 – Frigidaire came up with a split level unit for home use but still it was too expensive, heavy and required a separate condensing unit.

1930 – 1931 – General Electric produced 32 prototypes of a room cooler that was self contained which was an improvement on Frigidaire’s model from the year before.

1932 – H.H. Schultz and J.Q. Sherman built units that could fit on a window ledge but were too expensive so not many were purchased.

1947 – Engineer Henry Galson developed a better more compact ac unit that was spin off of the window ledge unit but was less expensive so he set up production lines with multiple manufacturers and for the first time the public could enjoy the comfort of cool air without having to make expensive changes to their homes.

1960 – Most new homes were being equipped with central air conditioning and window units were very affordable.

1970 – After the energy crisis hit, new laws were passed to reduce energy consumption which included new regulation on energy efficiency standards for air conditioning units.

Since 1992 conservation standards from the Energy Department for manufacturers of residential central air conditioners and heat pumps have been issued. New a/c units are much more efficient than they were in 1990 utilizing 50% less energy to operate.

What will happen with the future of air conditioning? As we all know new technologies are always on the horizon in many different industries including HVAC so we will see what comes down the pipeline in the future.

If your ac unit is in need of maintenance, repair or you need a new system for your home or business, give us a call. Don’t Settle for Less, Use RDS!

We are a Certified Florida Contractor – Lic.# CAC1816713

 

 

 

 

Sources: Dept of Energy
Wikipedia

Learn the Link Between Disease and the Temperature in your Home or Business

15 May
human with arms stretched out

New research is showing how with the touch of a button, you can improve your health.

Many of us here in Southwest Florida are concerned about our health so we try to eat right, exercise and reduce stress. You don’t often hear about your environment being part of this healthy living equation.

There are some health conditions that are prevalent in our society like heart disease, diabetes, stroke and some forms of cancer. According to NIH (National Instituites of Health) metabolic syndrome is the name for a group of risk factors that raises your risk for heart disease and other health problems (such as diabetes, stroke and some forms of cancer).

Metabolic risk factors include:

  • High Blood Pressure
  • High Triglyceride levels (type of fat found in the blood)
  • Low HDL (good cholesterol)
  • A Large Waistline (apple shape)
  • High Fasting Blood Sugar

As human beings, we naturally produce about 100 watts of heat energy just from our basic body processes like pumping blood, digesting, breathing, and bio chemical reactions.  As mammals, our bodies can maintain a comfortable core temperature of 98.6 F (unlike reptiles who are the same temperature as the air around them).

The average adult’s thermoneutral zone (most comfortable temperature) in a climate controlled environment like one with air conditioning is 64.4 – 71.6 degrees Fahrenheit. This means within this temperature range, the average healthy adult body can still maintain their core temperature without needing assistance (warmer clothing etc).

Many of us spend our time either at home or in a building working where our environmental temperatures are usually set by a thermostat to a temperature that is comfortable and constant (it doesn’t change).

New research shows a link between metabolic syndrome diseases and a comfortable constant environmental temperature. When the human body stays in a thermoneutral environment the body needs to produce little heat to maintain core temperature.

There is a positive link between fluctuating environmental temperatures (throughout the day) and metabolic syndrome. Slightly increasing temperatures in winter and decreasing them in summer just outside of our comfort zone, can have positive affects on our metabolic health and when coupled with diet, exercise, proper sleep, exercise etc, our overall health.

Having a programmable thermostat installed in your home or business will allow you the flexibility to program temperatures in different areas (zones) in your home or business.

RDS Air Conditioning can install a programmable thermostat in your home or business plus assist with ac repair, maintenance or replacement. We are standing by ready to help with all of your air conditioning needs. Don’t Settle for Less, Use RDS! GiveSensi™ Wi-Fi Thermostat, us a Call Today.

 

References:

tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.1080/09613218.2017.1307647
en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Thermal_neutral_zone
sciencedaily.com/releases/2017/04/170426092347.htm
nhlbi.nih.gov/health/health-topics/topics/ms

Do You Know How Temperature Can Affect Your Pet’s Health?

12 Dec
variety of pets looking down

Do you know the correct temperature range for your pet? Too cold or too hot can cause health problems.

Whether you have a dog, cat, rabbit, ferret or bird, our pets become part of the family. Some pets are furrier than others and temperature affects them differently depending on how well covered they are.

The annual temperature in our area of Southwest Florida ranges from 65.4°F to 84.8°F but as we all know it can get much colder or hotter.

If your pet is younger, older or has a health condition, they may have a more difficult time adjusting to temperatures and humidity levels than a healthy adult pet.

Here are some optimal air temperatures for some types of pets:

  • Most dogs begin to overheat when the temperature rises above 80ºF. Optimal temperature for a dog will depend on the thickness of its coat and how efficient their breathing. Pugs, Bulldogs and Boston Terriers do not have as efficient breathing to keep cool through their primary cooling mechanism (panting).
  • Your indoor cat will usually be comfortable at the same temperature you are.
  • Optimal air temperature for a rabbit is between 50ºF and 70ºF.
  • The optimal indoor temperature for a ferret is between 68ºF and 76ºF.
  • According to Gregory Burkett, DVM, most pet bird’s comfort range is between 65ºF and 80ºF.

It is a good idea to check with your vet to be sure of the best temperature range for your pet.

If your air conditioning or heating breaks down, as you can see, temperatures rising too high or too low can affect your pet. It is a good idea to have regular maintenance performed on your air conditioning unit to keep it running efficiently and to avoid breakdowns to keep you and your pet/s comfortable.

RDS Air Conditioning will maintain, repair or install a new air conditioning system in your home or business. RDS offers a comprehensive affordable maintenance package to take care of your a/c unit all year long. We are a Certified Florida Contractor – Lic.# CAC1816713.

Don’t Settle for Less, Use RDS!

How to Stop a Hurricane or Severe Storm from Ruining Your Air Conditioner

5 Oct

hurricane with palm trees

As hurricane Matthew pummels the Caribbean and heads towards the Southeast Coast of the United States, many business and homeowners are putting up hurricane shutters and boarding up to protect their properties.

When preparing for a storm protecting your a/c unit is usually not on the list. It can be very costly if your air conditioning
unit is damaged during a hurricane. High winds, debris flying around and if your a/c unit isn’t secured, it can loosen and become a dangerous flying object.

Luckily, it looks like this time SWFL has avoided a direct hit. Follow these tips to prepare your air conditioning unit before and after a hurricane or severe storm:

Before the storm:

  • In Florida, most of us have a split system with an outside unit on the ground. This outside unit should be installed on a concrete slab and tied down with hurricane straps.
  • Take a look around outside of your home or business and remove anything that could be picked up by heavy winds and become a dangerous flying object.
  • Clean up debris around your yard and a/c unit plus trim and dispose of any branches that are hanging near your a/c unit.
  • Often, debris flies around during a hurricane or severe storm so cover your a/c unit with a heavy tarp to protect it from flying debris.
    Make sure your air conditioner is turned off before covering it.
  • There are quite a few electrical components on your a/c unit so install a surge protector that can protect your air conditioner as well as your entire home.

After the storm:

  • Inspect the area surrounding your a/c unit before removing a tarp or turning the unit on. Look for downed power lines, water or debris that are close by. If you notice a downed power line do not go near it and call FPL immediately. Everyone knows downed power lines can be deadly.

Hurricane season 2016 does not end until November 30th and hopefully we will not have to deal with a hurricane anytime in the future but it is a good idea to keep these tips in mind if you ever have to prepare for a hurricane or severe storm.

RDS Air Conditioning would be happy to install a surge protector on your a/c unit to protect it from power surges that frequently occur in our area even when there is no hurricane or severe storm. Also, regular maintenance will help prolong the life of your a/c unit as well as keep it running as efficiently as possible.

Don’t Settle for Less Use RDS!!

Is Your A/c Unit Protected Against Power Surges?

21 Sep
a/c surge protector

You protect your computer, television and many other electrical appliances in your home but are you leaving something out?

Many people do not think twice about adding a power strip surge protector to their home to protect computers, televisions or many other electronic devices.

Most of these items cost well under $3,000 but an expensive item in your home that is not often protected against power surges is your air conditioning unit.

Basically, a power surge is a spike in the electrical current in your home. Although it is very brief (1/1000 of a second), it can still cause damage to anything in your home that runs on electricity.

Most power surges are caused by lightning but they can also be attributed to faulty wiring or appliances (dishwasher or refridgerator).

Appliances use a lot of energy to start up and shut down which can interrupt your home’s steady electrical flow.

Power surges can degrade the wiring and components in your a/c unit, cause a/c interruptions plus damage and reduce the life of your air conditioning system.

An easy thing that you can do to protect your air conditioner from power surges is to have a surge protector installed on your a/c unit.

A surge protector works by shunting the voltage to ground. A good ground is imperative. Also, it must be installed properly. It is important to have an HVAC contractor install your a/c unit’s surge protector to make sure it is installed properly for correct operation.

Florida has about 1.4 million lightening strikes per year so there are many opportunities for power surges.

Contact RDS Air Conditioning to have a surge protector professionally installed on your a/c unit to protect it against power surges. RDS Air Conditioning is a Certified Florida Contractor. Lic. #CAC1816713.

Don’t settle for less, Use RDS!

Air Conditioning Maintenance

28 Jun
As you know, air conditioning in South West Florida is an absolute necessity. Without it our homes would be unbearable.

Not only do we need the air conditioning to cool our homes, but it also removes the humidity.

Not to mention, high humidity in your home can cause damage to furniture, electronics and cabinets.

Mold and mildew thrive in high humidity. When your air conditioning system stops working, the heat and humidity build quickly. Every time your system turns on, it moves a lot of air through its coils and this moving air brings dirt and debris along with it, greatly reducing the efficiency of the system, making it work much harder.

Proper maintenance of your air conditioning system will reduce the likelihood of a break down. A complete and thorough tune up will keep your system working efficiently and at full capacity making your home cool and comfortable. Also, routine maintenance of your A/C system can reduce your electric bill and increase the lifespan of your system.

Humidity Control

Before and after cleaning an air conditionerHumidity Control in SW Florida is very important, especially for the part time resident. Electronic thermostats available today combine temperature and humidity settings, so humidity can be controlled more effectively.

This eliminates the need for the old mechanical humidistat and separate thermostat. Now is a good time to get this type of thermostat installed before the hot weather returns!!

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