A Look Back: Vintage Air Conditioning Ads

How Air Conditioning Saved Lives, Marriages, and the American Way

As the dog days of summer stretch on endlessly, leaving us to dash to and from our air conditioned homes and cars only if we have to, we reflect with gratitude on the enduring value of air conditioning. What the heck did people do before HVAC systems were clean, safe and affordable for most American families?

Judging from vintage advertisements from the 1950s and 60s, apparently they suffered a whole lot.

Just look at this guy.

air conditioning
A sad man without air conditioning

He’s barely holding it together. In fact, he looks a few degrees Fahrenheit away from stripping down to his underpants and running into the center of town, babbling incoherently about sales receipts and the icky sweat stains on his office chair.

This poor gentleman also looks like he needs medical attention, along with a cool beverage and of course, some HVAC.

HVAC systems
Get him a glass of water, stat!

In contrast, those who installed air conditioning from the beginning enjoyed benefits that went far beyond the temperature. This man, for example, is making every day a good day: cool, dry and comfortable. In fact, he spends most of his time parked in front of his HVAC system, reading. Here is his secretary, trying to get him to sign some documents.

air conditioning
His other window has a view of the ocean.

His life is way better than the unhappy film noir Mr. Sweaty is living In fact, it’s unlikely that our hero would be friends with the man in the first picture, let alone ever wear a yellow tie.

Looking through other vintage ads, it’s clear that even then, HVAC was good for kids and marriages as well. Look at this happy couple.

air conditioners
Air conditioning for marital bliss.

Things are working for them, in more ways than just agreeing on the thermostat. This is a love match, clearly. He looks like he might even help her vacuum later.

Here’s another happy family. That air conditioning system has somehow also inspired Dad and son to make some kind of structure made out of pipe cleaners that perhaps they’re planning to lock the dog into later.

Air conditioners
The dog will love it!

To live without air conditioning back then wasn’t just uncomfortable. It was tragic. Take little Billy, for example. He was apparently cast out to deliver newspapers in the sweltering heat, while his stepmother dressed her biological child in tutus, indoors.

air conditioners
Billy is sweaty, while Karen and her mother are cool and comfortable.

Billy looks not just hot, but as if he’s going to end up within the court system soon, another sweaty truant undone not only by his unhappy family but also by the ambient temperature.

Air Conditioners
She realized her mother was right.

This family is also under stress. Hot and uncomfortable, Dad is now re-evaluating his decision to marry and reproduce in the first place, while Mom looks on sadly, aware her own mother was right about the risks of not getting a good HVAC system. Meanwhile, Junior looks out the window, working out the hours and days until he can leave for a faraway university and its superior cooling systems.

Love means a thermostat.

What a contrast with this happy couple. They know better.  They have married well-and obviously enjoy a thermostat set to a balmy 68 degrees.

HVAC systems
He knows his HVAC.

And this guy. This guy. He has no existential doubts, no dark moment of the soul where he contemplates the past and wonders where it all went wrong. Look at him enjoy his new Philco Noiseless system in manly comfort. He stands by his choices.

Air conditioning
She’s in her own world of air conditioned comfort.

And finally, check out this lady. She doesn’t need cold, clammy air, unattractive, spinsterly cardigans, or even friends, family or other furniture. Her HVAC, like her self esteem, is enough, and it’s functioning perfectly.

So there you have it. People with air conditioning, people without air conditioning. Even in the 1950s and 60s, it’s obvious that HVAC brings benefits far beyond just environmental comfort. Happier families, greater success at work, even better hair.

Whether you’re a hip Millennial or a proud member of the Greatest Generation, everyone enjoys the cool comfort that a cost effective and energy saving air conditioner can provide. Visit airtro.com today to learn more.