Air Conditioning: Is it worth it?

THIS will be my first summer with a fully functioning (hopefully) air-con – it’s a long story, but the bottom line is that when Procoal put in the original system it was old fashioned and out of date repair-wise. Every year someone would come and tinker with it with very little result, but it gave up completely a couple of years ago.

Fransisco, our Spanish neighbour and a polymath, signed it’s death certificate, got and installed a new unit which of course needed gassing – gassing is expensive, and this was the fourth time we have had to meet this particular expense.

Fine last year, but when I switched it on this year – it was working except it was not giving out cold air.

I called him. ‘Francisco’ I said, ‘the aire is not working!’

He came post-haste, climbed about in the ceiling a bit, then informed me cheerfully that there was no gas.

‘But it had new gas last summer. You said it would not need re-gassing for years.’ I added ‘And years’ for emphasis.

‘Yes, but the gas has escaped.’ His bonhomie was undented.

Lions and tigers escape, and are caught again, but how can you catch escaped gas? I don’t suppose a tranquilizer dart would be much help, even if you could find where the escaped gas was hiding.

Where is it? And why did it escape in the first place?

I felt a nasty twinge coming on in my pocket. Four gassings is more than the purse can readily stomach.