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Do I Need to Cover My Air Conditioner?

With cold weather coming in Gresham, you may be thinking 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 resist severe weather, including extreme temperatures and heavy precipitation.

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

While putting on an air conditioner cover is an individual choice, there are two times of year that are good to use a cover for a lengthy period of time—fall and summer.  

That’s because yard debris during those seasons—grass clippings, twigs and leaves—can build up and block your system’s airflow. Decreased airflow means your air conditioning unit works more and may use more power to cool your house.

Seeking other ways to make your air conditioner run efficiently? Routine AC maintenance from Honke Heating & AC heating and cooling professionals can help. We’ll clean and lubricate your system, and examine essential pieces. This often allows us to spot problems 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 few ideas on choosing the ideal cover. 

Avoid Full Covers

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

Full AC covers can trap condensation inside your system, potentially corroding metal components. It could also make your air conditioner an inviting place 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 material 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 decide 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 sticks 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 heavy snow is on the way. Snow and ice that build up 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 approaching in Gresham. Hail can seriously damage your system’s coils, 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.

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