With cold weather coming in Greater Richmond, you may be thinking when you should cover your outdoor air conditioner. Of if you should even cover it at all.
Your AC unit is a sturdy piece of equipment. It’s designed to resist bad} weather, including intense temperatures and heavy precipitation.
Sometimes covers do more harm than good because they can trap moisture. Too much wetness inside your equipment can cause internal parts to rust or turn moldy.
While using an air conditioner cover is an individual choice, there are two seasons that are great for using a cover for an extended period of time—fall and summer.
That’s because yard rubbish during those seasons—grass clippings, twigs and leaves—can accumulate and block your system’s airflow. Diminished airflow means your air conditioning unit works longer and may use more power to cool your residence.
Looking for other ways to make your air conditioner run efficiently? Regular AC maintenance from Herman Allen Plumbing, Heating & Cooling heating and cooling professionals can help. We’ll clean and lubricate your equipment, and examine essential parts. This often allows us to pinpoint issues before they begin.
How to Choose an Air Conditioner Cover
If you decide you want to cover your air conditioner, here are a couple suggestions on choosing the best cover.
Avoid Full Covers
To keep air moving, a protective air conditioner cover should only encompass the top of your unit and a few inches on the side.
Complete AC covers can trap condensation inside your equipment, potentially corroding metal components. It could also make your AC a welcoming place for animals, which could eat through wires.
Related: What New Homeowners Need to Know About Their Air Conditioner
Don’t Use Plastic or Vinyl Covers
Plastic or vinyl covers block air, which could cause condensation to build up inside your system. The best type of clot is one that lets in air, like canvas or mesh.
Related: How AC Repair & Maintenance Can Actually Save You Money
When to Use an Air Conditioner Cover
If you choose to use an air conditioner cover, here are the best times to use it.
Cover Your Air Conditioner During Summer
A lightweight mesh cover during the summer allows your air conditioner to run unrestricted while keeping grass clippings and branches out.
Related: How Do I Know if My Air Conditioner is Running Properly?
Cover Your Air Conditioner During Fall
A breathable canvas cover will block leaves, nuts and other rubbish from getting into your unit.
Related: Tips for Cleaning Your System
Cover Your Air Conditioner Before Severe Weather
You can temporarily cover your air conditioner in the winter when you know heavy snow is approaching. Snow and ice that build up inside your air conditioner can melt and refreeze, damaging condenser coils and reducing efficiency.
Although it’s not always possible to predict a hailstorm, you can temporarily cover your air conditioner if a severe storm is approaching in Greater Richmond. Hail can seriously damage your system’s coils, impacting efficiency.
Related: How Severe Weather Can Lead to AC Repair
We Can Help Your AC System Run Efficiently
Whether you have questions about heating and cooling or need air conditioning service, Herman Allen Plumbing, Heating & Cooling offers help. Give us a call at 804-302-6657 or schedule an appointment online.