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When is the last time you thought about your Heating, Ventilation and Air Conditioning system? While HVAC systems aren’t typically a topic of conversation around the dinner table, they certainly become the center of attention when they aren’t functioning properly or when an airborne threat is present.

As new data emerges about the virus that causes COVID-19, experts are looking to outdated HVAC systems as one of the culprits leading to the spread of the disease. Some recent studies have suggested that SARS-CoV-2 can be spread through aerosolized particles in the air. One study that is awaiting scientific review found that samples from various areas of a hospital’s HVAC system contained genetic material from the novel coronavirus.

Needless to say, HVAC systems are getting a little more attention than usual these days. Here are five interesting facts about these important pieces of modern technology you might not know.

  1. Air conditioning started in movie theaters. Air conditioning units got their popular start in movie theaters in the 1920s, where the cool, dark atmosphere was a draw for patrons, especially during the summer months.
  2. HVAC accounts for most household energy usage. Nearly 50 percent of all energy consumption in U.S. homes is related to HVAC systems, according to the Energy Information Administration.
  3. Household air conditioning is relatively new. Home air conditioning units have been common for less than 100 years in the United States, making them a relatively new invention.
  4. Not everyone has AC. Although about 100 million U.S. homes are air conditioned, about 13 percent of American households do not have air conditioning, according to the Energy Information Administration.
  5. Air conditioning makes people less heat tolerant. While HVAC systems reduce the risk of temperature-related illnesses and deaths, they can also make individuals less tolerant of extreme temperatures.

Life Balance Technologies helps hospitals and other companies easily analyze air quality conditions and effectively manage their HVAC systems. By streamlining the process for compliance, auditing, and reporting, we help reduce costs and save lives.