Do I Need to Cover My Air Conditioner?

October 18, 2019

With cold weather on the horizon in Williamsport, you may be questioning when you should cover your outdoor air conditioner. Of if you have to cover it at all.

Your AC unit is a sturdy piece of equipment. It’s designed to take on bad weather, including extreme temperatures and relentless precipitation.

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

While putting on an air conditioner cover is your own choice, there are two periods that are good to use a cover for a long period of time—fall and summer.  

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

Seeking other ways to make your air conditioner run efficiently? Routine AC maintenance from George Home Services heating and cooling experts can help. We’ll clean and lubricate your equipment, and take a close look at important parts. This often allows us to pinpoint trouble before they begin.

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How to Choose an Air Conditioner Cover

If you determine you want to cover your air conditioner, here are a few tips on picking the right cover. 

Avoid Full Covers

To keep air flowing, a protective air conditioner cover should only encompass the top of your equipment and a couple of inches on the side.

Total AC covers can trap condensation inside your equipment, potentially eating away at metal parts. It could also make your AC a cozy home for rodents, which could sever 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 air conditioner. 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 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 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 stop leaves, nuts and other debris from getting into your equipment.

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 snowstorm is coming. Snow and ice that collect inside your air conditioner can melt and refreeze, breaking condenser coils and decreasing efficiency.

Although it’s not always possible to expect a hailstorm, you can temporarily cover your AC if a strong storm is imminent in Williamsport. Hail can seriously 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, George Home Services gives aid. Give us a call at 570-244-2510 or schedule an appointment online.