Foster Air History

Company History

Foster Heating & Cooling has been part of enormous growth and industry innovation since its inception in 1928. Over the years, the one-person company, started by Nels Foster, has grown to the present team of office workers, technicians, and sales & service personnel dedicated to customer satisfaction. Foster’s was the first company on the island to install and service a residential heat pump and it remains their specialty to this day.

Air conditioning hadn’t even been heard of when Nels Foster was just starting out. A machinist by trade, he worked mainly in the area of refrigeration for restaurants. After World War II, it became necessary to properly preserve blood supplies in blood banks and hospitals which further enhanced the refrigeration process. Air conditioning was also invented shortly after the war, and Foster adapted to the needs of the times. He installed Victoria’s first AC system in the Royal Jubilee Hospital’s maternity ward, where Foster’s still does some work to this day.

Several years ago, co-owners James Crumb & Dwayne Melanson expanded into the Cowichan & Comox Valleys, purchasing Westisle Heating & Cooling. Westisle is a major supplier of residential and commercial HVAC installations and 24 hour service.

Foster’s has come a long way from the days when Nels Foster parked his work truck in the early morning hours at the downtown freight ferry dock, waiting for his equipment and parts orders. In fact, it wasn’t that long ago that he was still at the helm – he had a desk in the office right up until a few weeks before his death in 1989 at the age of 88. Today, about 75% of Fosters’ business is commercial. Foster’s remains strong by embracing and implementing new technology, committing itself to the environment, and understanding the community in which it works.

Foster Heating & Cooling is proud to support the Anawim House!

At Foster Heating & Cooling, we are proud to be members of Victoria’s diverse, inspiring community. We live, play, and work in beautiful Victoria and its surrounding areas so it made sense to us to participate in the social development of  this incredible community by becoming involved with the Anawim House’s 25th Anniversary Renovation.

The Anawim House is a clean house (free from drugs and alcohol) that provides for those basic needs to which every individual is entitled including a safe home for people to come to and feel as though they are part of the community. Anawim provides a clean, safe space to help adults get off the street, sober, and have a fresh start.

If you would like to help Anawim House celebrate it’s 25th anniversary, please consider attending their fundraiser on November 18th. For more information about the fundraiser, please click or copy/paste the link into your browser:

As a sponsor, we are proud to be supporting Anawim in their endeavours to make our community stronger!

Foster’s has had the privilege of serving Victoria’s heating and cooling needs for almost 90 years. Whether we are supporting our Service Manager Steve’s continuing involvement with the Cops for Cancer Tour de Rock event, our sponsorship of HeroWork’s recent renovation of the Rainbow Kitchen, or supporting local sports teams (GO ROYALS!) Foster Heating & Cooling is committed to ensuring our beautiful city remains the thriving, relationship-driven community we are known for.