Approved by the Board of Directors on October 12, 2021 Approved by the General Membership on October 28, 2021
This policy replaces the Air Conditioning Policy approved by the General Membership on July 26, 2012
The safety of our members, staff and visitors to our building is vital.
Windmill Line Co-op (the co-op), as an apartment building owner, is required by the City of Toronto’s Property Standards Bylaw to “ensure that window air conditioning units are installed and maintained in a safe way.” (Frequently Asked Questions: Window Air Conditioning in Apartment Buildings, Last Updated: July 24, 2020)
Additionally the co-op’s insurance company states, “Window air conditioning units pose a falling hazard.” It recommends professional installation and that the co-op keep records showing that each installation was done by an adequately insured contractor.
Members are encouraged to use portable air conditioners as a way to avoid the potential safety hazards associated with window-mounted air conditioners (window ACs). Members intending to use window ACs are required to adhere to the terms set out in this policy.
1. About this policy
1.1 Acknowledgment by members
After this policy is passed, members who have window ACs must sign an acknowledgement that they have read this policy and understand their responsibilities as owners.
1.2 Role of the co-op office in AC-related services Members must go through the co-op office to:
· permanently remove a window AC
· temporarily remove or reinstall an existing window AC
· replace a window AC with another one
· add a window AC
All removals, installations, and servicing of window ACs must be arranged through the co-op office.
1.3 Ontario Human Rights Code
The co-op will administer this policy in a manner consistent with the Ontario Human Rights Code.
2.1 Townhouses only
Window ACs may be installed only in townhouse windows (but not in the two townhouse windows that overlook the central breezeway).
2.2 Location within windows
Window ACs may only be installed at the bottom edge of windows. In windows that have both upper and lower sliders, window ACs may be installed only in the lower sliders.
2.3 Sliding doors
Window ACs may not be installed in sliding doors.
3. Costs to individual members
3.1 Installation and servicing
Any functioning window AC that was removed for window replacement in 2021-22 will be reinstalled once, at the co-op’s expense, if all other conditions in this policy are met. After this reinstallation, members who own window ACs will pay for:
· professional installation or reinstallation and servicing by a contractor that has been approved by the co-op;
· temporary removal (examples: for winter storage; to move it to a different window within their unit)
· annual safety inspection and servicing beginning in 2023
· additional servicing if necessary to end dripping
· servicing to fix unsafe installations if the member has violated this policy
· such other costs as the co-op deems necessary to ensure the safe installation, servicing, and any removal of the window AC.
3.2 Liability insurance
Members who own window ACs must carry liability insurance of at least $1 million and show proof of it to the co-op each year.
4.1 Professional installation required for window ACs
Members must go through the co-op office for installation of window ACs. The co-op will maintain a list of approved professional contractors.
4.2 Safe and damage-free installation
a) Window ACs and portable ACs must be installed without bending the slider window tracks, without making any holes in the window frame, and without creating any other damage to the window system or other co-op property.
b) Panels that installers use to fill the space between the window AC and the window frame must be made of a material approved by the office.
c) The co-op will pay for and arrange any necessary electrical upgrades for portable or window-mounted air conditioners.
4.3 After initial installation
After professional installation of window ACs, members may not change or remove panels, brackets, screws, or any other part of the safe support system put in place by the installer. To remove or reinstall the window AC with its safe support system, a service call from an approved professional contractor, arranged through the office, is required.
4.4 Co-op response to safety concerns
a) When a window AC is reported to the office as being improperly installed and/or causing a safety risk, co-op staff will make an initial inspection from the outside. If staff believe there to be a risk to safety, they will call an approved professional contractor immediately and arrange for entry to the member’s unit on an emergency basis.
b) The co-op will require the contractor to remove the identified window AC if the contractor determines it is not possible to make the window AC safe without removal. The cost of this service call will be covered by the co-op but can be charged to the member if the co-op determines that the member violated the requirements of this policy in a way that made the installation unsafe.
4.5 Storing sliders and screens
Members are responsible for any sliders or screens removed from windows in order to install portable or window ACs and must ensure they are properly reinserted in the windows when the AC is temporarily or permanently removed.
4.6 Responsibility for damage
Members will be required to pay for any damage they cause to the window system by use of portable or window ACs, including the cost of replacing windows if necessary.
5.1 Dripping prohibited
Dripping of condensate from a window AC is prohibited if it damages co-op property, creates a safety hazard on co-op property or adjacent public sidewalks, or creates a nuisance for members other than the dripping AC’s owner. Members are encouraged to use portable ACs to avoid dripping.
5.2 How to report dripping
All members must report dripping from window ACs to the office immediately.
5.3 Co-op response to dripping
When dripping is reported to the office and confirmed by staff to be prohibited (as
defined in 5.1), the co-op will be responsible for bringing an approved contractor in quickly. (The cost of this service call is to be paid by the member who owns the window AC.)
5.4 Time limit for dripping
If an approved contractor cannot service the window AC to stop the prohibited dripping within three calendar days, the member must stop using the window AC.
5.5 Portable AC available on loan
When prohibited dripping cannot be addressed within three calendar days, the co-op will offer the member the loan of a portable air conditioner until the window AC is serviced and the dripping has stopped.
6. Inspection and servicing
6.1 Annual appointments
The co-op will arrange annual safety inspection and servicing appointments for window ACs, to be scheduled in co-operation with the owners.
6.2 By approved professional contractor
Annual or additional servicing of window ACs must be done by a co-op-approved professional contractor, not by members or others.
7. Unit entry
Members must allow entry to their units for electrical upgrades, inspections, servicing, or window-AC-related emergencies. The co-op will provide advance notice of upgrades, inspections, or servicing, according to the Occupancy By-law. However, where there is deemed to be a safety risk to members or attendees at the co-op, the co-op is entitled to enter the unit, without notice, on an emergency basis.
8. Permanent removal of window ACs
8.1 Co-op pays for permanent removal
The co-op will arrange and pay for the permanent removal of a window AC, at the member’s request, if the member does not replace it with another window AC within their unit.
8.2 Co-op removes window ACs left behind
The co-op will remove any window AC left behind by a member who has moved out of a unit, before the new occupants move in, unless the new occupants accept full responsibility for it under this policy.
9. Removal of improperly installed or dangerous ACs
The co-op has the right, in its sole discretion, to remove any AC unit that is, in its opinion, improperly installed or that poses a danger or risk to any member, employee, visitor, or attendee at the co-op’s property.