Do I Need to Cover My Air Conditioner?

October 18, 2019

With cold weather coming in Gresham, 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 tough piece of equipment. It’s created to take on bad weather, including extreme temperatures and heavy precipitation.

Sometimes covers create more issues, because they can trap water. Too much wetness inside your equipment can cause internal parts to rust or turn moldy.

While putting on 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 waste during those seasons—grass clippings, twigs and leaves—can accumulate and block your system’s airflow. Decreased 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? Annual AC maintenance from Honke Heating & AC heating and cooling professionals can help. We’ll clean and lubricate your system, and inspect essential pieces. This often allows us to spot 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 system 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 an inviting area 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 block air, which could cause moisture 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 want 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 smoothly 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 halt leaves, nuts and other rubbish from falling 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 heavy snow is on the way. Snow and ice that accumulate inside your system can melt and refreeze, harming condenser coils and decreasing efficiency.

Although it’s not always possible to predict a hailstorm, you can temporarily cover your air conditioner if a severe storm is coming in Gresham. Hail can severely damage your system’s exterior, altering 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, Honke Heating & AC provides assistance. Give us a call at 503-663-8033 or schedule an appointment online.