When Was Air Conditioning Invented?

Years before an air conditioner was officially invented, some great scientists and inventors had marvelous ideas about cooling the air to reduce the heat inside the house. 

Their ideas contributed a lot to the invention of an actual air conditioner. When was air conditioning invented? Read on…

Benjamin Franklin and Professor John Hadley in 1758

Benjamin Franklin and Professor John Hadley once touched on experimenting with quick evaporation and freezing using alcohol and other liquid elements to freeze water. 

They wanted frozen water to cool down the room or lower room temperature. They probably did some exciting experiments, but they found that frozen water was insufficient.

John Gorrie in 1840

Because of the grueling heat in Florida, Dr. John Gorrie picked the pieces from Franklin’s experiment. His idea was about artificial cooling, which became the groundwork for an ice machine. He made a device that used compressor technology to produce ice. 

Although the experiment was not a big success in air conditioning, it was used as the basis for the invention of modern air conditioning.

Willis Carrier in 1902

Working at a publishing company was extra demanding for Mr. Willis Carrier. The heat affected the quality of the paper and the ink on the prints. Willis Carrier’s job was to design a system that would help keep the temperature and humidity steady so as not to damage the paper or the ink. After much trial and error, Willis Carrier eventually came up with a solution that worked, and his invention changed the printing industry forever.

During those times, they used an apparatus that blew air into the room while working. The cool air from the device managed to keep the papers flat and smooth and the ink intact. The employees also benefit from the said device, making it a little less irritating.

Meanwhile, Mr. Carrier came up with a notable idea from the apparatus. 

He also borrowed some concepts from the mechanical refrigeration developed in the previous years. He then created the first-ever electrical air conditioner, which was intended for industrial purposes and not for personal or home comfort.

The device was designed to control the printing plant’s humidity and temperature and improve its manufacturing process. It was a machine that sent cool air through some coils that were filled with ice-cold water. 

Through this invention, Mr. Carrier established the first-ever air conditioning company in the US, the Carrier Air Conditioning Company of America. He adopted the term “air conditioning” from Stuart W. Cramer.

In 1933, the company developed a device that became the model for the modern air-cooling systems in the US. The device was made using a belt-driven condenser, a blower, and some mechanical controls and coils for evaporation.

More developments came up, which include Thomas Midgley, Jr.’s discovery of freon refrigerant in 1928, the rotary compressor in 1957, heat pumps in 1977, R-22 alternative refrigerants in 1992, chlorofluorocarbon in 1995, and more. The simple concept of blowing cool air to protect the paper from wrinkling became a big achievement in air conditioning technology that homeowners and commercial businesses now benefit from every day.



ECM Air Conditioning, with its headquarters located in Boynton Beach, FL, provides air conditioning services within Palm Beach County, Broward County, Martin County, and St. Lucie County. If you’re looking to have a new HVAC system installed, we’re on-call and ready to assist you. So if you’re in need of an HVAC installation, don’t hesitate to contact us today to schedule an inspection! Our HVAC installation experts will check your ductwork, measure, check wire sizes, and more before making recommendations to ensure maximum efficiency and comfort. Call us at 561-295-1763 or contact our HVAC installation team online by clicking here.


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