In the hotter parts of the world, air conditioning, whether in a home or a public building, is a must-have. To give one example, according to the Department of Energy, 98% of houses in the southern state of Texas use air conditioning. The systems used range from old-fashioned window units to central air, integrated with the heating, ventilating, and air conditioning (HVAC) of many houses. While the types of cooling units may vary, the goal is the same: to let us exist in a wider range of temperatures than biology would normally allow in comfort and style.

There are many questions one could ask about this phenomenon. For instance, which varieties of air conditioner work best in which environments? What is the relative popularity of each type among the general population? How does AC usage vary by region across the United States and its varied climate systems? These questions are more than theoretical; the answers to them are used to decide what kind of HVAC system to put into newly constructed buildings, dictate government policy, and shape an entire industry. But where can you get this information?

This following infographic, created by McWilliams & Sons Inc., sums up the basics of keeping indoor temperatures under control in hot environments like Texas, as well as elsewhere in the U.S. It takes data from a wide sampling of sources and converts it to a visually interesting and straightforward form. Give it a look, and come to understand this important facet of modern life just a bit better.

HVAC infographic

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