By Chamoy City Limits

San Antonio raspa shop stays cool using ice blocks, fan after AC theft

Alicia Barrera, Multimedia Journalist
Ken Huizar, Photojournalist
Published: April 5, 2022 at 5:10 PM
Owner of Chamoy City Limits said unit was stolen from the roof sometime last week.
SAN ANTONIO – On San Antonio’s North Side, a raspa business is relying on some of its product to keep cool after someone stole its heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC) unit. The owner of Chamoy City Limits, Ana Fernandez, said the theft likely happened between Thursday and Friday. “Everyone started to get hot, so we were like, ‘Why is it so hot?’” Fernandez said. “I tried to adjust the thermostat. We realized that it wasn’t doing anything, so I called (Dilmak Services Heating & Air).” It wasn’t until then that she realized the problem was much greater than she had imagined.
“He showed me the casing of the unit, and it was just completely empty. And I was in shock,” Fernandez said. Mike Pollaro, owner of Dilmak Services Heating & Air, said thefts of HVAC units are all too common. “It’s always happened throughout the years,” Pollaro said. “But here, lately, it’s become more common.” The copper, platinum and other metals that make up the unit could be sold at a recycling center or scrap yard. “It’s hard to stop a theft when it comes to this type of equipment,” Pollaro said.
Due to supply shortages, Fernandez won’t get a replacement until sometime in June. Fernandez found a way to cool down. “Because we do sell ice, we’re in a better position,” Fernandez said. “We have these giant ice blocks. So what we did over the weekend -- we just put the ice blocks in, like, a bucket, and we put a fan behind. It’s like an old-school kind of air conditioner. It actually worked fine for now.”