With cold weather coming in Rapid City, 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 sturdy piece of equipment. It’s designed to resist inclement} weather, including excessive temperatures and heavy precipitation.
Sometimes covers cause more problems because they can trap moisture. Too much wetness inside your unit can cause internal parts to rust or become moldy.
While installing an air conditioner cover is your own choice, there are two seasons that are ideal for using 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 pile up and obstruct your system’s airflow. Diminished airflow means your air conditioning unit works longer and may use more energy to cool your residence.
Seeking other ways to make your air conditioner run efficiently? Annual AC maintenance from Street Heating and Cooling heating and cooling technicians can help. We’ll clean and lubricate your equipment, and take a close look at critical components. This often allows us to identify problems before they begin.
How to Choose an Air Conditioner Cover
If you come to the conclusion you want to cover your air conditioner, here are a couple suggestions on picking the best cover.
Avoid Full Covers
To keep air circulating, a protective air conditioner cover should only enclose the top of your system and several inches on the side.
Total AC covers can trap moisture inside your equipment, potentially eating away at metal parts. It could also make your AC an inviting place for animals, 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 impede air, which could cause condensation to build up inside your unit. The best type of fabric 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 smoothly 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 debris from falling into your unit.
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 build up inside your system can melt and refreeze, damaging condenser coils and lowering efficiency.
Although it’s not always possible to anticipate a hailstorm, you can temporarily cover your system if a severe storm is imminent in Rapid City. Hail can seriously 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, Street Heating and Cooling offers help. Give us a call at 605-206-3915 or schedule an appointment online.