Willis Carrier, a 25-year-old engineer born and raised in New York, worked at Sackett-Wilhelms Lithographing & Publishing Company of Brooklyn in the summer of 1902. Every summer, intense heat caused ink not to dry quickly, resulting in runs of ink spreading across book pages, and paper enlarged during hot times, causing type font to look different whenever it had left the sweltering-hot facility.
Tired of dealing with these common issues, Carrier invented the modern air conditioner shortly after. Four years later, in 1906, Carrier got a patent for his air conditioner and began selling it.
Over the past century-plus, air conditioning has advanced tremendously. Still, however, plain air conditioning just doesn’t satisfy many of our needs from time to time. Plus, leaving air conditioners on full-blast all day isn’t good for electricity bills, though it is effective in dropping behind a sizable carbon footprint for planet Earth to deal with.
For these reasons and several others, many of us seek alternatives to traditional air conditioning systems. Let’s check out six popular alternatives to traditional air conditioning networks and learn a little bit about each of them.
1. Air Conditioners Don’t Always Need Ductwork, Believe It Or Not
Ductwork refers to the network of flexible ducts spread throughout spaces in between walls, ceilings, and floors to distribute heated and cooled air throughout homes that have central air systems. In some cases, especially for renters who don’t have permission to carry out full-fledged home improvement projects, ductless air conditioners are the best means of staying cool during spring, summer, and the first few weeks of fall.
Traditional air conditioning systems, those that consist of bulky HVAC units stationed outside of homes, are far bulkier than their ductless counterparts. Also known as mini split air conditioners, this effective alternative to the traditional air conditioner is connected to a not-as-big condenser located outside of the home.
2. Who Needs Central Air When You’ve Got Its Outdated Brethren?
Window-mounted air conditioners, also known as portable air conditioners, used to be the most popular form of air conditioner in the entirety of the United States. The simple, boxy design of these AC units effectively hang the business end of the unit well outside of the window frame. As such, exhaust can freely drip to the ground.
Although these units won’t work unless you have them properly mounted in windows, they are a suitable alternative for cooling one to three normal-sized rooms per wall-mounted air conditioning unit if your home’s central air unit is out or you’re not in a place with one.
3. The Higher The Humidity, The More Heat Remains In The Air
Humidity is a term that refers to the saturation of water vapor in a body of air. The higher the humidity, the hotter a body of air feels.
Even though the swamp cooler, also referred to as the evaporative cooler, doesn’t have the power that the two air conditioners listed above have, it is still effective in environments that does not have much water vapor present in the air.
Swamp coolers work by releasing water vapor into a closed environment. First, the operator soaks a pad or sponge with cold water. The swamp cooler circulates air via a fan, causing water to spread all throughout homes. To keep a house cooled by a swamp cooler feeling A-OK, quickly cracking and closing windows as a means of waving goodbye to unwanted heat was the go-to move.
In short, swamp coolers are effective in dry areas. Humid areas and swamp coolers simply don’t mix.
4. The Least Powerful Tool On The List
Are you familiar with the round, spinning, metal things affixed to many homeowners’ roofs? These devices are known as attic fans, which are essentially a dumbed-down version of the aforementioned swamp cooler.
Attic fans cool homes by pushing stuffy, hot air out of homes and making a constant breeze blow inside. These tools are great for temperatures that don’t get higher than 80 degrees Fahrenheit.
5. The Poor Man’s Air Conditioning Unit – The Box Or Rotating Fan
White plastic box fans and rotating steel fans are arguably the two most popular styles of home ventilators. Although these fans don’t actually cause the temperature of nearby air decrease at all, they deceive the brain into feeling more comfortable.
A good way to take advantage of these fans during tough times is to place the fans as close to the ground as possible. Next, face them upwards. The coolest air in the room, the air nearest the ground, will be circulated throughout the upper tiers of the room, regulating temperature and causing people inside them to feel better.
6. The Ground Can Work Wonders, Believe It Or Not
Geothermal heating and cooling use the power of the Sun and the cool ground. First, a wide network of plastic or rubber tubes is buried about a foot underground. When homes need to be cooled off, this water can absorb heat from houses that use these systems.
To heat homes up, hot water, which is made hot by carefully, neatly coiling one or more hoses on a black shingle roof, is circulated through hoses inside the home. This is the hardest system to implement but is cheaper than a new A/C Unit, but is the best for the environment.