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Heat & Smoky Air Increase Demand For AC in Northwest

Jennifer Ford

The recent historic heatwave and expectation of further heat and smoke in a changing climate has more northwesterners installing air conditioners. 



Bill Jerome owns Climatize, an HVAC company in Eugene. He says his call volume is up 400 percent over the past couple of months. He said with the fires and smoke last year and the recent triple digit heat wave, more people want AC.

“A lot of people who have been wanting and thinking about it over the years are now ready to make that decision,” Jerome said. “ Both to deal with their comfort now with these heat waves but then also to plan for possible smoke when they would have to close up their homes in 85-90 degree weather because they don’t want the smoke coming in.”

Air Conditioning isn’t widespread in the northwest. And, the ubiquitous electric ceiling heat is inefficient. Utilities offer rebates for energy efficient systems like ductless heat pumps.

Copyright 2021 KLCC.

Rachael McDonald is KLCC’s former News Director. Rachael has a BA in English from the University of Oregon. She started out in public radio as a newsroom volunteer at KLCC in 2000. After reporting for the Northwest News Network and KAZU, Rachael returned to KLCC in 2007 as Morning Edition host and a general assignment reporter covering politics, the environment, education, and the arts. She was hired as KLCC News Director in 2018. Rachael departed KLCC in June, 2022.
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