Over 550,000 central air conditioners and air-source heat pumps shipped in August.

ARLINGTON, Va. - Combined U.S. factory shipments of 557,509 central air conditioners and air-source heat pumps in August were down 10 percent from the same month in 2003, according to statistics from the Air-Conditioning and Refrigeration Institute.

Heat pump shipments of 144,364 were up 2 percent compared to August 2003. Total shipments of 5,632,767 units are up 9 percent for the first eight months of 2004.

ARI also reported that factory stocks for August 2004 were up 91,082 from July 2004 and up 210,237 units from August 2003. Distributor inventories for August 2004 were down 185,454 units from the previous month, but up 67,596 units from August 2003. Distributor shipments for August 2004 were down 1 percent from August 2003, with year-to-date shipments up 6 percent.