Feeling the heat

Well, the weather finally warmed up for the long weekend. And my apartment has been getting hot.

This has been a regular thing for my apartment. It has two rooms facing west to the park, and tends to trap summer heat. Air conditioning has been a bit of a recurring tribulation too. The second summer after I moved in, I bought a window air conditioner at Canadian Tire, put it into my kitchen, took it out and put it in its box when the weather cooled down – and the next summer, my friends, family, and I absolutely could not figure out a way of putting it back into that window without the fool thing falling out. My apartment has oddly shaped windows. I ended up selling that window unit for something like 20% of what I bought it for around the end of that third summer.

I think the same year, I bought a model of air conditioner that sits inside the room, with a hose that connects it out the window, and a little plastic tank to collect the water that’s condensed out of the air, so that when the tank is full the air conditioner shuts off. It’s a nifty little machine, and can also run as a dehumidifier, fan, or an electric heater in the winter, but it doesn’t really have that much ‘oomph’ as an air conditioner, especially since the hot air has to run through the hose. So my apartment would still get pretty warm in the hot spells, even with that air conditioner running non-stop.

But I got along that way for many years. I actually got a lot of good writing done during the summer from avoiding being in my apartment – I’d take the Alphasmart Dana, go down to the Red Hill library and write all Saturday, and two evenings a week. I set my all-time personal daily best at the library, 10,000 words split between four or five different stories.

But eventually that got a bit ridiculous, and I decided that I was going to get a new window air conditioner for the kitchen, and possibly enlist the help of a handyman to help get it in. I was mentioning that to Paul, the guy who runs the laundromat downstairs, and he mentioned that he knew a guy who did that kind of work, and gave me the friend’s number. I called the guy up, he said that he was refurbishing a good used window model air conditioner that might work with my place, and so he set it up and installed it at a bargain price. I’ve been leaving it in the kitchen, (because it’s basically built into the window with plywood,) and plugging the tiny drafts as they come up with foam or paper towel or anything else that’s handy.

So, last year at around this time, I tried turning on the air conditioner, and noticed that I wasn’t getting a rush of cold air, or indeed a blast of any air at all. There was a sound, so I figured that something was working, but it wasn’t the fan. Did a bit of tidying up in the kitchen just on principle, called Don up, and he came over on the Monday of the Victoria day long weekend, tweaked the fan motor, mentioned that I should be cleaning the filters, and I paid him a little for his time. Well enough.

Pretty much the same thing happened this year, except that I made sure to clean the filters before trying to turn the power on. Don’s coming by at 9 am tomorrow.

Also, I managed to accidentally break something in the other air conditioner’s hose attachment last fall when I was packing it up, so that though everything else on that unit is working fine, I cannot actually get the hose to stay in the window, and thus cannot actually expel the hot air from my apartment. Sigh. My mom has a similar model air conditioner that I may be able to borrow parts from, or I may show the broken hose and fitting to Don tomorrow and see if he can think of anything better to do for it.

At least I shouldn’t need to worry much about the heat after tonight.

One Response to Feeling the heat

  1. roguemutt says:

    I have central air in my place…unfortunately it was broken and they couldn’t fix it until at least Monday, so last night I had to use two fans on high to try and make it somewhat bearable with the heat and humidity.


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