Today I’m going to share with you Free Air Conditioner Programs, Get Free Air Conditioners from Government.
Electronic equipment has allowed us to live a life, which our ancestors never thought was possible. From flying in the air to creating the weather as we like, technology has helped us evolve multiple times in just hundreds of years.
The level of growth human ace has seen in the past few hundred years, especially with the invention of electricity, is unprecedented. If you want to wash your clothes, you don’t have to go to the river anymore.
There is a perfectly sophisticated machine at your house, ready to do your work for you, in a better manner. Similarly, if you want to talk to someone, you don’t have t write them letters and wait for their replies for days.
Simply a text will do the work. If you are feeling too hot in the extreme weather, just turn on the air conditioners, and the air will be as cool as you want it to be.
Talk about air conditioners. They are the type of inventions that don’t get enough credit for aiming our lives simpler. We cannot imagine a life without air conditioners, especially when the weather is not so kind to us anymore.
However, even with all this, air conditioners are sophisticated pieces of equipment that do not come free. Or do they? Technically, they don’t. It needs time and effort to build them and maintain them, so they don’t come for free, or for that matter, even cheap. This doesn’t mean that it is a luxurious item anymore.
A few years ago, it was a luxury item, however, with more competition and better techniques with low-cost mechanisms, air conditioners have also become relatively affordable.
Even after all the low-cost techniques and technology, the air conditioner is still a very heavy expense on your pocket. That doesn’t mean you can’t get it.
The government and federal programs are here to help you. There are many civil society organizations as well that might be of help to you.
In this article, we are going to talk about free standing air conditioners and how to get them. We are going to cover various free air conditioner programs offered by the government and NGOs for people below the poverty line, and low-income families.
We will also discuss how you can get financial assistance for an air conditioner, and how to get a free air conditioner by following few simple steps.
Many schemes include free air conditioners for the disabled, free air conditioners for seniors, etc. We are going to discuss all of these aspects.
If you are also fed up with the heat at your house, and want to get one, but don’t know how to get a free air conditioner, you have come to the right place. We are going to guide you through the whole process.
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Introduction to the Free Air Conditioners Programs:
Before dwelling further into the technical aspect, it is important to understand what the topic is all about. The federal government and the state governments offer many assistance programs for low-income families, that help them pay for the new air conditioners, or repair the old ones.
These governments and LIHEAP make continuous efforts to ensure that everyone has access to a decent and working air conditioner. These ACs are a part of the grant from the government.
The only eligibility requirement to be met is different for different grants. The basic ones include having an underlying health problem, having a low income, being above a certain age. You can apply for these ACs through the Home Energy Assistance Program or HEAP.
If you are from a low-income family or a senior citizen, all you have to do is apply for free standing air conditioner and fill the form prescribed. These schemes do not usually run throughout the year.
There are specific dates on which they open. Make sure you follow these dates and stay updated. These grants for air conditioner units are available on the websites of the respective government agencies. Keep checking them.
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Free Air Conditioners for Seniors:
Senior citizens often need more support than usual due to their inability to move freely, underlying medical conditions, income issues etc.
This is why many federal assistance schemes are focused on them specifically. HEAP also provides free air conditioners for seniors and low-income families.
If you have a senior at your house, he or she may be eligible for getting a free air conditioner from HEAP. If not, there might be some financial assistance on their part.
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Free Air Conditioner for Disabled Veterans:
There are some organizations and government schemes that also provide free air conditioners for disabled veterans, and disabled people in general. HEAP also takes into account such requirements.
Due to their underlying issues, they are unable to earn properly sometimes, which is why federal assistance programs are readily available for them.
If you have someone who is a disabled veteran, the chances of them getting a free C are considerably higher because such individuals are often considered favorably for the schemes.
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Free Air Conditioner for Medical Reasons:
People from low-income families often find it difficult to buy an AC. However, there are medical conditions that need an AC to be stable. Often seniors and people with medical health conditions have increased chances of getting heart strokes.
Now, this factor is being considered by federal schemes and private organizations for granting free air conditioners and financial assistance for the same.
If you have someone who is having underlying medical conditions, HEAP and private organizations provide financial assistance for AC and even provide free AC for such individuals. You need to show some medical certificates and doctor’s verification to prove the same.
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Free Air Conditioners for Low-Income Families:
Low-income families often find it difficult to buy air conditioners. This does not mean that the heat is kinder to them for their lack of resources. The climate is striking everyone equally, and people without an AC bear the major brunt of it and often even die with heat strokes.
However, the government and many charitable institutions have started providing free air conditioners to such individuals.
People with low income get assistance from NGOs, NPOs, the government etc in form of financial assistance and free electronic equipment as well.
It all depends upon the total number of donors, and the level of funding available in any given year. Sometimes people directly donate air conditioners to charitable institutions, which are then further distributed among the applicants.
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How to Get a Free Air Conditioner for Low-Income Families?
Now coming to the question at hand, we are going to discuss various communities and groups that are eligible for these grants, and how they can approach applying for the same. First, if you are from a low-income family, we are going to focus on you.
There are various schemes and grants that work towards providing free air conditioners from the government. We have listed them out for your convenience.
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HEAP or the Home Energy Assistance Program is a program designed to assist people who have low income or come below the poverty line. It is important for the applicant to confirm their eligibility through verified documents.
How Does HEAP Work?
It’s very simple, as the name suggests, HEAP helps in procuring energy assistance for low-income families. This includes procuring heat if the home is being run by oil, propane etc.
The government also runs financial assistance for the air conditioner program that provides free access to those who fulfill the criteria and apply for it. You need to contact the local government officials and know more about what is needed.
This program was introduced years back and has been successfully providing heating to low-income households. Note that only one air conditioner or any other equipment can be granted to one family.
If your home is not fit for installing an AC, then you can get a fan instead of it. If the price of the item is more than $800, it will not be eligible for financial assistance.
It does not matter if it is an AC or a fan. The price should be kept below this amount to ensure financial compensation is paid.
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Who All Are Eligible for Heap?
Like all other government schemes, you need to fulfill some criteria to get assistance. Below, we have mentioned two main requirements of the program.
- You must be a citizen of the USA. Your house should be situated in the USA, and you should have a member who has a health condition that might deteriorate due to extreme heat conditions. You have to provide documents to prove this stage.
- The income of your house should be within the guideline shared by HEAP from time to time. This includes the gross monthly income of the household and not just of one person of the family.
If you don’t qualify for these requirements, don’t worry, you still can get a free air conditioner at your home if you are a recipient of the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, which was earlier known as the Food stamp scheme.
Moreover, there are certainly other ways through which you can become eligible for HEAP.
- if you receive Code A supplemental security Income while living alone.
- If you receive more than $21 benefits in one year and do not have an air conditioner. Alternatively, if you have it, it must be more than 5 years old for you to be eligible for the program.
Keep in mind that you need to fill the application form with the local department of social service in order to get air conditioners for low-income families.
In order to be eligible for this scheme, you need to come within the maximum gross monthly income guidelines. These guidelines are updated each year.
Below is the table of gross monthly income size depending upon the size of your household. You can get a better view of eligibility from these guidelines. This is for the year 2020-2021.
Each addl’ person
If you have a household of 2 people, the total income of this household should not exceed $2,178 to become eligible. Similarly, you can assess the gross monthly income after adding $568 for each individual further on.
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Where to Get Free ACs?
Now that we have told you how you can get free ac, we are going to further tell you where you can get it. You need to have your documents ready and apply to the scheme. You need to visit the local department and apply.
After that, all you need to do is wait for them to visit your house and inspect it accordingly. If you want to check the list of different types they offer, you can visit the local HEAP contact and ask for it. Once you have installed it, make sure you have it in the best condition.
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How Do These Emergency Assistance Programs Work?
There are first very few simple steps involved. If you already have an air conditioner, you will not be automatically eligible for a new one.
LIHEAP will first get your old one repaired. If that works, you wouldn’t get a new one, however, if it doesn’t work even after repairing, you will become eligible and you will get a new unit.
The application criteria depend upon the size of your household, as mentioned in the table above and the medical conditions of the person who is to be considered.
You need to show valid medical proof to the officials. This is because Air conditioners are granted to people who have someone with medical conditions, and without an AC, their situation is likely to get deteriorated.
Apart from these government schemes, there are other institutions that can be approached for similar assistance.
You need to look up such alternatives before going forward. We have listed down some of the places you can approach for getting financial assistance for air conditioners.
Salvation Army Thrift Stores:
You can look up for Salvation Army free air conditioner scheme for getting free ACs. They provide free air conditioners for disabled. The applicant can also participate in a family service program.
The best thing about the salvation army’s free air conditioner scheme is that even if you are not eligible as per their criteria, you can still go to their stores and get heavy discounts on it.
They offer some great discounts that might help you out. If you can show some medical emergency, they also consider relaxing their eligibility criteria and install the AC for free. Some of them also go for elder members, families of veterans, as preferred candidates.
If you are chosen, they will come and install the AC at your house without any cost. All you need to take care of is fulfilling their eligibility criteria and providing them with authentic documents for verification.
Churches and Local Communities:
Another great way to get free AC is through local communities and churches that run loan and financial assistance programs for people. There are summer cooling programs that offer free units for low income families.
Moreover, not only new ones, but they can also offer repair services for free.
Some of the organizations ask for a little fee for donation so that they can continue serving others. This is not a big amount, and people can consider giving. These assistance programs start in May and end around July.
The program for low-income families gets filled up very quickly, and they have a limited supply of free ACs.
So you should consider keeping a check on it and ensure you get a slot. Filling the application form as easily as possible is a very important factor to be considered in such assistance programs for low-income families.
Cooling Assistance Program:
If you or any of your family members have any medical health issues, and cannot tolerate the summer heat, you can apply for this program which opens in May and ends in August. You need to show medical documents verifying your claims.
For more information, you can call them and ask for details. Some eligibility requirements are mentioned on their website, which we are producing below.
- You must satisfy the HEAP eligibility criteria which includes the gross monthly income limit as well.
- One person must have health and medical issues that tend to get worse during summer. This must be authenticated by a doctor’s verification.
- You must not already have an air conditioner at your home.
- If you have an AC, it should be more than 5 years old for you to be eligible.
Society of Saint Vincent De Paul:
Society of Saint Vincent De Paul is an international organization that aims to help people with low income and disabilities, to live a better and healthier life. They have a free home AC program which opens every summer.
If you have a low income, you can apply for this scheme and you might get a free AC for your home. You need to show necessary documents which include your ID proof and medical conditions as well.
They fix an appointment for interviewing the candidate who has applied for the scheme. If you are selected, you will get an AC at your home within a few days.
In order to be eligible, you must not have gotten an AC under the same program in the last five years. Only one person from one household can apply for the program.
This organization is known for its charitable endowments and assistance programs for the disabled, seniors and low income people.
It works tirelessly to help them get a better life. If you can prove that you are a person in need, they will surely come to your aid and help you in whatever manner they can. They have partnered with big electronic companies to provide free AC to such people.
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Alternative Ways to Get Free Air Conditioners:
Even though HEAP and the institutions we have mentioned above, are a great way to get free air conditioners, not everyone is fortunate enough to get lucky here. This doesn’t mean you cannot get it from any other source as well.
If these sources do not work, there are other alternatives that can help you get a free, or cheap unit for the home. These are very basic tips and do not involve some government schemes or charitable institutions. You can follow the tips below to increase your chances of saving money.
- Buying an AC during the off season will reduce the expenditure on it considerably. This is because, like all other products, the prices of AC also fluctuate through demand and supply. During the offseason, which is winter, people don’t buy AC, however, it’s not like companies stop making them. Therefore, the supply usually remains the same however the demand goes down. This leads to a fall in prices. You can take advantage of this phenomenon and get yourself an AC at a much cheaper rate than other times of the year.
- You can also consider buying AC during the offseason from online stores like Amazon that bring out great deals for customers. There are clearance sales and festive sales that offer huge discounts on electronics. You can consider buying from there.
- You can also consider buying a second-hand AC from websites like Craigslist. These items are generally in a good condition and offered at low prices. You can search for the model of your choice online and buy at heavy discounts.
- Many schemes that we have mentioned above, like the Salvation Army scheme also provide ACs at low cost to people who need them. You need to lookup more for their services to get details, as this changes from state to state. If you have any medical emergency, or disabled, or are a single mother, you can also get window AC for yourself.
Now, these were some tools that you can use to get a better deal for air conditioners. We have some more tips and grants that you can look into, for getting a free air conditioner.
- Energy Star Tax Credit:
The energy star Credit scheme is not a government grant. However, it can be used to get free air conditioning in 2021.
Through this grant, you can get a rebate of almost 10% of the price of an AC. This means usually you can get a discount of $50-$500 depending upon the price of the AC. This grant is need-based so you need to show that you have a real need for it.
This tax rebate program is mainly meant to provide some financial assistance in terms of ACs. These are available for the HVAC units and air conditioners that have an energy star certification with them.
There is one application form that needs to be filled. Along with this application form, documents verifying information need to be submitted too. After the submission, you need to wait for their response. They will contact you if the grant is approved.
- Weatherization Assistance Program:
This program also provides free air conditioners for families with low income. The scheme was up and running in 20021.
It has been introduced recently, by the United States Department of Energy. Usually, the weather is too extreme, and this scheme helps with the weatherization cost of the families.
This means that your household’s weather can be stabilized at little or no cost. This includes heating and cooling equipment.
You need to contact the local weatherization agency to apply for a free unit. There is an application form that needs to be filled specifying a request for this grant.
The agency will review the application and your details, and if your application is found to be satisfactory you will most certainly get the unit you have applied for.
These were two additional alternatives to the HEAP scheme to get a free air conditioner. However, not everyone is lucky enough to get their units through them.
Simply put, the number of units available for charitable purposes versus the population that needs them is very low. Therefore, there is a competitive environment. There are other private alternatives for which you can opt.
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Private Alternatives to Government Grants:
- Home Improvement Loan:
We understand that a loan is not a very viable option for everyone, however, if you don’t have any other option, and getting an Air conditioner is extremely important, you can always rely on this prospect.
A home improvement loan helps the owners to secure funds that are necessary to complete the task of improving their home without having too much credit card debt.
Although, you might need some collateral to be put, so if you have one, it can be used to secure a home improvement loan.
- 0% APR Credit Card:
This is a very popular option these days for making large purchases like an air conditioner. You don’t have to pay extra interest if you pay off your balance before the expiry of the introductory rate.
Therefore, this is a viable option to explore if you don’t have enough money right now, but expect some in the near future.
There are many banks that offer these credit cards. You can visit their websites to know more about the rates and terms and conditions.
- Local Incentives and Government Loans:
Different states offer different subsidized loans for building maintenance and energy usages. For example, Austin, Texas, Austin Energy has a database of available rebates and grants available for energy-efficient AC to be installed.
If you live there, you can definitely visit there. You can enquire more about other states through local energy departments.
Now, we have completed our list of different mechanisms, grants and rebates available for low income families and others on how to get a free air conditioner.
Apart from the free air conditioner from HEAP, there are various alternatives to be explored, and we have detailed all of them for you. Now it is time to answer some prominent questions.
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Frequently Asked Questions:
1. How to Maintain the Ac Received Through Heap?
This is a very important question. It is not just important to get a free air-conditioner, it is equally important to maintain it.
This is because firstly, you are lucky enough to get one for free. Secondly, you have some needs, and you aren’t going to get it for the next five years again, so it becomes important to know some basics on how to maintain it so that it works efficiently for the next five years.
- Keep Checking the Duct:
The duct is a very important part of an AC. If it gets blocked, or there is a leakage, your AC will not work properly. The duct outside needs to be well insulated.
You can have a professional install some ventilators that are meant to keep the ducts safe. If you want to, you can also seal the ducts with the help of mastic. It is better if you seek the help of a professional for this purpose.
- Increase Energy Efficiency:
You need to regularly do things like replacing the dirty filters, keeping the right airflow, cleaning the oils. Just like a car needs servicing, an AC needs it too. Make sure the condenser is not hidden from the sight so that airflow is not blocked completely.
- Lighten the Load:
Lightening the load means improving your building so that it does not need an AC all the time to cool down. Moreover, you can also increase insulation levels, or reduce the air leakage from the room.
Some of these improvements require investments as well. You might need to put a better window or door that is meant to seal the room.
Moreover, do not overuse the equipment. If it’s not needed, close the AC. Switch them off. You can use fans or coolers when the weather is not so scorching.
In dry areas, people use swamp coolers that use water to cool the air sucked from outside with the help of a fan. If the weather is not so scorching, these often help.
An AC Should be able to heat, cool, ventilate, humidify, and dehumidify as needed depending on the seasons. After cooling, ventilation is a very important task to be done by the AC.
Without adequate ventilation, the contaminants that are generated indoors can lead to health problems. There should be an ample amount of ventilation in the room and air should be allowed inside every 4 hours.
Make sure your house is not too tightly gripped from walls so as no fresh air can come inside even when you want to. This will make sure that both your and your AC’s health is maintained.
- Choose an AC According to the Needs:
Originally, AC was invented to cool off because of humidity. Lack of humidity control in such climates le:d to moisture related health issues and comfort issues. Modern AC can dehumidify as they cool the room.
However, they cannot control the humidification independently of the cooling. These two functions are carried off side by side.
Sometimes the climate becomes too humid to cool it off through an AC. Usually, a maximum of 60% humidity is accepted as normal. Maximum dehumidification work is done during the summers.
However, there may be times when humidity is even beyond this. ACs sometimes don’t cool properly in these situations. There are some companies that claim to aid in such a situation, by controlling humidity independently.
You may want to choose the AC of these companies if you are living in an extremely humid climate. Otherwise, you can also consider buying a dehumidifier.
- How to Get a Free Air Conditioner and How to Qualify for It?
The assistance program offered by the government cannot be offered to everyone in need. It is meant for people who cannot afford it in general but still need them for health issues of their family members, or themselves. Here are some points you can keep in mind before applying –
- Your health must be certified by a medical health professional.
- You need to be an American citizen who is never convicted of any crime.
- You can’t qualify for an AC if you already have one.
- You must be eligible for other federal schemes such as SNAP, Medicaid etc. Moreover, you must be within the income limit group.
3. What Documents Are Required for Getting a Free AC?
Certain documents need to be shown in order to qualify for grants and schemes offered by government and private organizations. These papers must be presented with decent, which means, they should be clear, concise and not in a dismal state.
These should be accurate and you cannot try to lie on your documents. Here are some of the documents that can be shown, and are asked by the authorities.
- Social Security Number
- Social security number for other dependants
- Naturalization certificate
- Birth certificate
- School records
- Adoption records
- Medicaid Card
- Baptismal certificate or other religious certificates.
- Record of marriage
- Health certificate
4. Do We Get to Choose Our Own Models?
Well sometimes, yes, and sometimes no. There are some grants like HEAP grants and energy assistance grants where you can choose your own models, within the price range offered by the authorities.
While on the other hand, there are private charitable organizations that get these AC in donations. So they don’t offer much choice to the recipients. They get whatever model is available to them.
Nevertheless, recipients usually get new models with decent enough features.
5. How Do I Apply for Such a Free Air Conditioner?
It is pretty easy. We have explained in detail above how to apply. However, for a recap. You can visit the New York HEAP office for assistance.
You can also visit their website. You just need to fill out an application form and provide them with the information they need along with document proofs.
6. Can I Get a Free Air Conditioner Near Me?
Yes, you can. If you do your research well, you can always get a free air conditioner near you. There are private charitable organizations and churches that offer community members free AC and other aids.
If there is any such community near you, you can look for it too. Moreover, you can visit the local HEAP office near you to apply for their scheme.
If you are not looking for a free one, but a discounted one, then online stores are also a great option to explore for heavy discounts.
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Ending the Article:
We have tried to provide every information possible regarding free air conditioner programs available in the country. Now all you have to do is choose one for yourself and apply honestly.
HEAP Is a great option for those who have someone in their families in urgent need of an AC, but cannot afford it. Apart from that, if there is no such medical health condition, you can still get a free AC if you do the research right.
For example, you can look for other private non-profit organizations giving out free ACs, and government schemes offered from time to time.
If you are a senior, you can be eligible for different schemes, the same holds true for disabled people and veterans as well. The government knows how to take care of different types of citizens.
This is because the American constitution and state system doesn’t believe in Equality but equity. People who need help are preferred over people who don’t. You can always count on the system for helping you out at the time of your need.
AC has become an integral part of our life, and we cannot live without it. If you also want to have one for yourself, go out there and apply for it. Don’t wait.