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Do I Need to Cover My Air Conditioner?

With cold weather coming in Libertyville, you may be questioning when you should cover your outdoor air conditioner. Of if you need to cover it at all.

Your AC unit is a strong piece of equipment. It’s created to resist bad weather, including extreme temperatures and heavy precipitation.

Sometimes covers cause more problems, because they can trap condensation. Additional wetness inside your equipment can cause internal components to rust or become moldy.

While installing an air conditioner cover is an individual choice, there are two seasons that are good to use a cover for an extended period of time—fall and summer.  

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

Wanting other ways to make your air conditioner run efficiently? Routine AC maintenance from Toptec Heating, Cooling, Plumbing & Electrical heating and cooling experts can help. We’ll clean and lubricate your system, and examine important pieces. This often allows us to identify problems 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 couple suggestions on choosing the ideal cover. 

Avoid Full Covers

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

Total AC covers can trap condensation inside your unit, potentially corroding metal parts. It could also make your system a cozy place for rodents, 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 water to build up inside your system. The best type of cloth 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 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 halt 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 heavy snow is approaching. Snow and ice that accumulate inside your AC 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 severe storm is approaching in Libertyville. Hail can critically damage your system’s fins, impacting 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, Toptec Heating, Cooling, Plumbing & Electrical provides aid. Give us a call at 847-362-0262 or schedule an appointment online.

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