New York’s spate of warm spring weather is making some apartment dwellers testy.
BrickUnderground has heard from several residents complaining that they are living in high-rise sweat lodges: Their centrally air-conditioned buildings have not yet flipped the switch from hot to cool.
They want to know whether there's a law requiring
buildings to cool things down when the mercury hits a certain level.
Short answer: No.
The NYC building code says heat must be provided from October 1st to May 31st when the temperature dips below 55 during
the day or 40 degrees at night.
But there’s nothing on the books about when the big chill must occur. And once it does, the heat stops, which means a building could be subject to fines and violations in a subsequent cold snap.
“Buildings that have central heating and
air conditioning systems cannot run both at the same time or quickly switch from one system to the other,” explains Dan Wurtzel, the president of Cooper Square Realty. “May and October are tough months because you have warm-to-hot days and can still have
Depending on the risk appetite of your
building and the velocity of complaining by you and your neighbors, your
building might switch over before the end of the month.
“The boards determine with guess work and weather watching,” says Paul Herman,
the director of management at Brown Harris Stevens Residential Management, referring to co-ops and condos. “Some turned them on this
week and will now get complaints as we get colder over the weekend.”
In the meantime, apartment dwellers with window and wall units have the best of both climates.
“Residents have already begun to use them
in my building,” says resident manager Joseph Shkreli. “Also our lobby a/c unit has been up and running for about a week now.”
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