Do I Need to Cover My Air Conditioner?

October 18, 2019

With cold weather approaching in Brandon, you may be wondering when you should cover your outdoor air conditioner. Of if you have to cover it at all.

Your AC unit is a strong piece of equipment. It’s designed to resist inclement weather, including intense temperatures and relentless precipitation.

Sometimes covers create more issues, because they can trap moisture. Additional wetness inside your equipment can cause internal pieces to rust or become moldy.

While using an air conditioner cover is your own 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 pile up and lower your system’s airflow. Diminished airflow means your air conditioning unit works more and may use more energy to cool your house.

Looking for other ways to make your air conditioner run efficiently? Annual AC maintenance from Brandon Heating and Plumbing heating and cooling professionals can help. We’ll clean and lubricate your system, and examine essential pieces. This often allows us to pinpoint problems before they begin.

Schedule service now

How to Choose an Air Conditioner Cover

If you determine you want to cover your air conditioner, here are a few suggestions on choosing the ideal cover. 

Avoid Full Covers

To keep air flowing, a protective air conditioner cover should only enclose the top of your unit and a few inches on the side.

Complete AC covers can trap condensation inside your unit, potentially corroding metal components. It could also make your AC a cozy home for rodents, which could chew 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 moisture to build up inside your unit. The best type of cloth is one that’s breathable, like canvas or mesh.

Related: How AC Repair & Maintenance Can Actually Save You Money

When to Use an Air Conditioner Cover

If you decide to use an air conditioner cover, here are the best times to put it on.

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 block leaves, nuts and other waste 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 coming. Snow and ice that collect inside your system can melt and refreeze, breaking condenser coils and decreasing efficiency.

Although it’s not always possible to anticipate a hailstorm, you can temporarily cover your air conditioner if a strong storm is coming in Brandon. Hail can severely damage your system’s fins, affecting 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, Brandon Heating and Plumbing gives help. Give us a call at 204-728-0180 or schedule an appointment online.