Company History

The Friedrich Legacy

The Friedrich family name has a rich heritage intertwined into the fabric and history of the city of San Antonio.  From the Buckhorn Saloon to Friedrich Wilderness Park, to the San Antonio Zoo, to Friedrich Air Conditioning; the Friedrichs’ innovation, ingenuity, and philanthropy made its mark on this great city and over a hundred years later, their legacy lives on.

Ed Friedrich founded ‘Friedrich’ in 1883 in San Antonio, Texas. Ed Friedrich was a craftsman who designed furniture from the horns of longhorn cattle and later produced other handcrafted products like store fixtures, wood billiard tables and fine, carved cabinetry. Many of his pieces were used in his brother Albert’s Buckhorn Saloon.  But Ed was also an innovator and inventor. He recognized a need for food preservation and developed one of the first refrigeration systems, ultimately setting the course for the company’s 100+ year legacy of cooling the most valuable product of all - people.

From refrigeration to air conditioning

By 1950, Friedrich had become one of the world’s largest manufacturers of commercial refrigeration equipment. To capitalize on its reputation as an industry leader, the company expanded into room air conditioners. The first 500 floating air window units came off the assembly line in 1952 and sales began to climb.

That was only the starting point for many firsts in Friedrich’s history of HVAC innovation.  From the introduction of ductless split systems in the US to launching the first room air conditioner with electronic controls, to the first Wi-Fi enabled smart room air conditioner - decades later and still based in San Antonio, Friedrich remains one of the most recognized room air conditioning brands, known for innovation, commercial-grade durability and energy efficiency. 

In 2006, Friedrich began production at a new, state-of-the-art manufacturing facility in Monterrey, Mexico, making it the sole remaining North American manufacturer of room air conditioners. In late 2010, after almost 40 years at 4200 Pan Am Expressway in San Antonio, Texas, Friedrich Air Conditioning moved its headquarters into 22,000 square feet of light-filled space at the Union Square II Building at 10001 Reunion Place. 

New products showcase innovation, energy conservation

With a commitment to innovation and a focus on continual improvement, Friedrich sets the bar high to offer some of today’s best-performing air conditioning solutions. That commitment is what led Friedrich to build its own state-of-the-art Design and Development Center (DDC), adjacent to its San Antonio headquarters – one of the only air conditioning companies to make such a strong commitment to onsite testing, quality control, certification, and product innovation. It is at the Friedrich DDC where the company’s leading experts work to develop, test and raise product standards for energy efficiency, sound reduction, performance reliability and much more. 

For Friedrich, that close attention to detail has paid off and today, the company is proud to offer best-in-class A/C solutions for both commercial and residential customers. 

Friedrich room air conditioners, including Kühl, WallMaster, and Chill, are establishing a new category standard, with innovations in control, customization, quality, efficiency and design. Friedrich Hazardgard has earned a strong reputation for being able to handle some of the toughest indoor environments in the world. Beyond room A/C units, Friedrich recently introduced a top-performing ductless system with exceptionally efficient heating and cooling capabilities, giving commercial and residential customers more options than ever before. 

Friedrich’s leadership includes providing top-performing air conditioning solutions for lodging and multifamily properties, thanks to its pioneering VRP® (Variable Refrigerant Packaged) Heat Pump system introduced in 2017 and the new Friedrich FreshAire™ PTAC system launched in 2018. Based on energy-efficient inverter compressor technology, these award-winning innovations mark a first for the HVAC industry, delivering outstanding indoor air quality and solving issues such as combating humidity without the need for larger, more complex systems. Along with Friedrich’s popular Vert-I-Pak® series, these products provide the most complete range of top-quality solutions for all types of lodging and multifamily facilities. 

Many Friedrich lines have energy-saving and smart home features like programmable thermostats and timers, and remote energy-efficient management capabilities that can reduce costs. In addition to its own efforts at energy conservation, Friedrich is a proud partner of ENERGY STAR®, one of the world’s leading programs for promoting energy-efficiency and sustainability. 

Friedrich Air Conditioning – A heritage of quality without compromise

Since its founding in 1883, Friedrich Air Conditioning Co. has had one manufacturing standard – quality without compromise. 

Today, Friedrich is recognized as the top brand of specialty air treatment products for the worldwide market, offering differentiated solutions for room air conditioning, dehumidification, and air purification. 

Ed Friedrich’s invention and the company’s commitment to quality without compromise sparked what would become 135 years of steady growth and development for this legendary San Antonio business.

See the full line of Friedrich products

Friedrich is committed to helping customers find the right cooling solution for virtually any need. Our expansive product line includes a range of options for the residential and commercial markets, including room air conditioners, through-the-wall units, ductless split systems, packaged terminal air conditioners, portables, and dehumidifiers. And for commercial applications, we offer specialty models for hazardous locations and single package vertical units for multi-room properties. We invite you to explore the pages of to see what solutions might work best for you.