The History of Air Conditioning-and What’s Next

Air conditioning technology has evolved dramatically over the centuries.


180 AD
Chinese inventor Ding Huan uses fans to blow air across cool water, marking the birth of mechanical air cooling.

Willis Haviland Carrier invents the first modern air conditioner for the Sackett-Wilhelms Lithographing and Publishing Company. He goes on to found the Carrier Air Conditioning Company of America.

The first modern CFC refrigerant is invented. It is known as R22 and is marketed under several brand names, including Freon®. R22 becomes the most common refrigerant used in air conditioning systems throughout the 20th century.

The United States signs on to an international environmental treaty, leading to an agreement to phase out the production of R22 by the year 2020.

As the production of R22 is reduced, the cost of recharging the refrigerant in air conditioning systems continues to rise, from less than $10 per pound in 2010 to over $50 per pound, and more in some cases, today.

How American Home Shield is addressing the increased cost of R22.
As a result of the R22 phase out, even simple air conditioning repairs may cost significantly more. Technicians commonly add 1-2 pounds of refrigerant on a routine service call. A more complicated repair or replacement can require up to 10 pounds. As you can see, the cost can add up quickly.

In order to accommodate customers’ coverage needs while keeping our plans affordable, AHS has included a $10 per pound limit on refrigerant on all new or recently renewed contracts. If a homeowner requires refrigerant, AHS will cover the first $10 for each pound of refrigerant, and the homeowner will be responsible for the remainder.

As always, you can count on professional care from our contractors if your air conditioner needs service. They’ll diagnose your problem, determine what’s needed to restore your unit to working order and advise you of any non-covered charges for which you may be responsible.

Our goal is to provide reliable, trusted service while helping shield our customers from high repair costs. If you have any questions regarding the refrigerant phase out and its impact on our policies, visit