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  • Datasapien
  • Super Waygook

    • 396

    • February 04, 2012, 09:36:25 pm
    • Chungcheongbuk-do
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Air-Conditioningitis
« on: June 05, 2019, 12:05:12 pm »
Was having lunch with a couple of co-teachers a second ago and they asked me what '냉방병' is in English. My first guess was 'Legionnaires' disease' but they said it's not a lung-related illness. So I searched and found this article: http://www.koreaherald.com/view.php?ud=20110714000782

My co-teacher was adamant she suffered from it, but it's the first I've heard of it since coming to Korea. Have you guys had any firsthand experience of this? Know anyone who suffers from 'air-conditioningitis'?

Edit 1: I spelt adamant wrong.

Edit 1.5: I know it's possible to get sick from AC, just wondering if anyone else has suffered from / knows anyone who has suffered from the symptoms listed in the article? My co-teacher also said it'd sometimes cause her to vomit  :huh:.

« Last Edit: June 05, 2019, 12:13:09 pm by Datasapien »
"A noble spirit embiggens the smallest man." - Jebediah Springfield.


Re: Air-Conditioningitis
« Reply #1 on: June 05, 2019, 12:14:14 pm »
One of the English teachers in my school asked about that last year as a student wrote that in an evaluation essay, and whether it was acceptable.  I searched and found that it is on the Seoul University Hospital website, so felt that was good enough.  I'd say it is just someone who sits in an air-conditioned room for too long and then going out into the heat causes them some problems.
« Last Edit: June 05, 2019, 12:27:22 pm by Ronnie Omelettes »


  • debbiem89
  • Expert Waygook

    • 507

    • August 30, 2016, 09:42:49 am
    • South Korea
Re: Air-Conditioningitis
« Reply #2 on: June 05, 2019, 12:41:00 pm »
I believe it's a thing.

That article is crap though, could just be that it's from the Korea Herald.

..."live a calm orderly life", "eat breakfast" it's so generic.


  • oglop
  • The Legend

    • 2068

    • August 25, 2011, 07:24:54 pm
    • Seoul
Re: Air-Conditioningitis
« Reply #3 on: June 05, 2019, 12:47:02 pm »
I believe it's a thing.

That article is crap though, could just be that it's from the Korea Herald.

..."live a calm orderly life", "eat breakfast" it's so generic.
"drink some warm water"


Re: Air-Conditioningitis
« Reply #4 on: June 05, 2019, 12:48:55 pm »
I believe it's a thing.

That article is crap though, could just be that it's from the Korea Herald.

..."live a calm orderly life", "eat breakfast" it's so generic.
"drink some warm water"

"Don't play soccer today."


  • VanIslander
  • Moderator LVL 1

    • 1339

    • June 02, 2011, 10:12:19 am
    • Seogwipo, Jeju Island
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Re: Air-Conditioningitis
« Reply #5 on: June 05, 2019, 01:04:52 pm »
Of course, dirty a/c causes lung problems.

Even the cleanest a/c can cause a harmful arid condition.

Those are a couple of the reasons why i run the a/c and open the windows and turn on the fans at the same time (the logic undermined by bad air from China, but c'est la vie).



  • VanIslander
  • Moderator LVL 1

    • 1339

    • June 02, 2011, 10:12:19 am
    • Seogwipo, Jeju Island
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Re: Air-Conditioningitis
« Reply #6 on: June 05, 2019, 01:09:28 pm »
Note:Even in Canada in the 1980's we heard the advice to open windows in cars with a/c on, to reduce headaches, and i'd noticed that.


  • Ailsa123
  • Newgookin

    • 3

    • June 05, 2019, 12:03:55 pm
    • South Korea
Re: Air-Conditioningitis
« Reply #7 on: June 05, 2019, 01:11:39 pm »
The way my Korean teachers explained it to me was that it was actually because people keep the air con on so cold - people get sick in the summer because they're cold.


Re: Air-Conditioningitis
« Reply #8 on: June 05, 2019, 01:18:01 pm »
Never heard of it before in my life (or the bit about opening windows with A/C on outside of Korea). Also, if you open the windows and doors with the A/C on in the USA, you're probably going to get a slap from mom because you're wasting electricity.  That was a massive no-no growing up.


  • zola
  • The Legend

    • 2689

    • September 30, 2012, 06:56:11 am
    • Korea
Re: Air-Conditioningitis
« Reply #9 on: June 05, 2019, 01:18:29 pm »
Those are a couple of the reasons why i run the a/c and open the windows and turn on the fans at the same time (the logic undermined by bad air from China, but c'est la vie).
You aren't helping matters by wasting so much electricity. AC with the windows open. I think you've been here too long mate.
Kpip! - Martin 2018


  • leaponover
  • Super Waygook

    • 466

    • March 05, 2012, 12:08:16 pm
    • Iksan, S. Korea
Re: Air-Conditioningitis
« Reply #10 on: June 05, 2019, 01:52:40 pm »
If this is a thing I can't imagine what they do in states like Florida and Texas.  I mean, I lived in Texas and never heard of this.  Maybe Central Air limits it?


  • CO2
  • The Legend

    • 4517

    • March 02, 2015, 03:41:14 pm
    • Gunpo
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Re: Air-Conditioningitis
« Reply #11 on: June 05, 2019, 01:55:55 pm »
The joys of fauxtherhood


  • HappyPlanetAbuser
  • Veteran

    • 202

    • May 30, 2019, 11:30:16 pm
    • in my car polluting your air
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Re: Air-Conditioningitis
« Reply #12 on: June 05, 2019, 03:12:05 pm »
I learnt how to clean aircos via youtube and washed my airco religiously with professional cleaner I bought at Gmarket. I think you are referring to black mold build-up.

These systems especially can be home to black mold, as moisture can build up in the coils and ducts When these microorganisms go air-borne, they can lead to a multitude of breathing problems, including a potentially fatal infectious pneumonia, Legionnaire's disease,

Cheap airco spray doesn't kill off the mold, you will actually have to scrub and wash the coils with cleaner and rinse them. I covered my walls with huge plastic bags and laid 2 blankets underneath and cleaned out my wall unit by throwing buckets of water at the coils. After that no more headaches or constant sneezing.

This is why you should never install wall units, they're really hard to clean and if your airco smells funky, you should either have it professionally washed out or always  keep 1 window open.
« Last Edit: June 05, 2019, 03:21:20 pm by HappyPlanetAbuser »
Burning up your kids' future like there ain't no tomorrow! Trump 2200


  • VanIslander
  • Moderator LVL 1

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    • June 02, 2011, 10:12:19 am
    • Seogwipo, Jeju Island
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Re: Air-Conditioningitis
« Reply #13 on: June 05, 2019, 09:01:44 pm »
Wasting electricity?

Using a big screen TV or flying somewhere on vacation is a bigger waste of energy than all the open windows of my jeep and apartment during a/c use.

Geez. Do what makes you most comfortable.

Save energy where it doesn't matter TO YOU!


  • zola
  • The Legend

    • 2689

    • September 30, 2012, 06:56:11 am
    • Korea
Re: Air-Conditioningitis
« Reply #14 on: June 05, 2019, 09:16:34 pm »
Wasting electricity?

Using a big screen TV or flying somewhere on vacation is a bigger waste of energy than all the open windows of my jeep and apartment during a/c use.

Geez. Do what makes you most comfortable.

Save energy where it doesn't matter TO YOU!
Cooling and heating your space are by far the biggest consumers of energy. Not even close. Your tv is probably one of the lowest. Flying is another category altogether. By the sounds of it, along with your opening windows while running the ac, you don't really know what you are talking about.
Kpip! - Martin 2018


Re: Air-Conditioningitis
« Reply #15 on: June 05, 2019, 09:16:53 pm »


  • hangook77
  • Hero of Waygookistan

    • 1151

    • September 14, 2017, 09:10:12 am
    • Near Busan
Re: Air-Conditioningitis
« Reply #16 on: June 26, 2019, 07:50:34 am »
I use air con a lot all summer long.  Many older or oldish Koreans ask me if I am cold.  "Aren't you cold?"  But as they say over at McDonald's: "I'm lovin' it."  No problems.  So grateful my schools this year and last have allowed me to use it as necessary. 


Re: Air-Conditioningitis
« Reply #17 on: June 26, 2019, 08:44:51 am »
My aircon is on as soon as I get in the door after work.  Between 20 and 21.  I like to be cold  :laugh:


  • Lazio
  • Veteran

    • 145

    • January 27, 2018, 03:56:10 pm
    • Gyeongi-do
Re: Air-Conditioningitis
« Reply #18 on: June 26, 2019, 10:50:29 pm »
My aircon is on as soon as I get in the door after work.  Between 20 and 21.  I like to be cold  :laugh:

I keep 23 degrees Celsius in my home during winter, so when I read something like this it makes me wonder: If a person likes to keep their home at 20 degrees Celsius in summer... what temperature would they have their thermostat set on in winter? Since people tend to wear warmer clothes even at home in winter (socks, sweatpants, long sleeve T-shirt or sweater) as opposed to summer when you are barefeet and wearing a light T-shirt with shorts, I would say it should be no more than 17 or 18 degrees Celsius.
Same dilemma with those that keep their home at a toasty 26-27 degrees Celsius in winter. Do they "cool" their house to 28-29 celsius in summer? Because that's the only way it makes sense to me. I've told this many times to my students but they don't seem to get my point. They want the A/C to be set at around 20 degrees Celsius but want several degrees higher than that in winter. When they also wear an entire wardrobe of clothes and the puffy jackets of course. It also blows my mind when they refuse to even unzip said jackets in the heated classroom and walk out into the -10 Celsius weather wearing exactly the same things like they did in +25 Celsius in class. I just can't wrap my head around this.


  • Datasapien
  • Super Waygook

    • 396

    • February 04, 2012, 09:36:25 pm
    • Chungcheongbuk-do
    more
Re: Air-Conditioningitis
« Reply #19 on: June 27, 2019, 09:28:02 am »
They want the A/C to be set at around 20 degrees Celsius but want several degrees higher than that in winter.

I'm not the only one! Used to work with an American lady who made the office freezing cold in summer and boiling hot in winter. If the office was as cold in winter as she made it in summer I'm 100% certain she would have complained and turned the heating on. It seems such a waste of energy to me - summer is hot and winter is cold, no need to turn winter into summer and vice versa.
"A noble spirit embiggens the smallest man." - Jebediah Springfield.