Do I Need to Cover My Air Conditioner?

October 18, 2019

With cold weather coming in Bossier City, you may be thinking when you should cover your outdoor air conditioner. Of if you need to cover it at all.

Your AC unit is a sturdy piece of equipment. It’s designed to withstand severe weather, including extreme temperatures and torrential precipitation.

Sometimes covers cause more problems, because they can trap water. Extra wetness inside your system can cause internal parts to rust or turn moldy.

While using an air conditioner cover is a personal choice, there are two periods that are good to use a cover for a lengthy period of time—fall and summer.  

That’s because yard rubbish during those seasons—grass clippings, twigs and leaves—can pile up and lower your system’s airflow. Reduced airflow means your air conditioning unit works harder and may use more energy to cool your home.

Looking for other ways to make your air conditioner run efficiently? Routine AC maintenance from Brooks Heating and Air Conditioning heating and cooling technicians can help. We’ll clean and lubricate your equipment, and inspect critical parts. This often allows us to pinpoint trouble before they begin.

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How to Choose an Air Conditioner Cover

If you come to the conclusion you want to cover your air conditioner, here are a couple ideas on selecting the best cover. 

Avoid Full Covers

To keep air circulating, a protective air conditioner cover should only surround the top of your unit and a couple of inches on the side.

Complete AC covers can trap condensation inside your unit, potentially corroding metal components. It could also make your system a cozy place for rodents, 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 stop air, which could cause water to build up inside your system. The best type of material is one that allows airflow, 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 install it.

Cover Your Air Conditioner During Summer

A lightweight mesh cover during the summer allows your air conditioner to run freely while keeping grass clippings and twigs out.

Related: How Do I Know if My Air Conditioner is Running Properly?

Cover Your Air Conditioner During Fall

A breathable canvas cover will halt leaves, nuts and other rubbish from getting into your system.

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 a blizzard is approaching. Snow and ice that build up inside your system can melt and refreeze, damaging condenser coils and lowering efficiency.

Although it’s not always possible to predict a hailstorm, you can temporarily cover your system if a severe storm is coming in Bossier City. Hail can severely damage your system’s exterior, 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, Brooks Heating and Air Conditioning offers help. Give us a call at 800-COOLING or schedule an appointment online.