24/7 Emergency Support

Do I Need to Cover My Air Conditioner?

October 18, 2019

With cold weather coming in Plainfield, 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 inclement weather, including intense temperatures and torrential precipitation.

Sometimes covers create more issues, because they can trap moisture. Too much wetness inside your equipment can cause internal pieces to rust or become moldy.

While using an air conditioner cover is your own choice, there are two seasons that are ideal for using a cover for an extended 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. Reduced airflow means your air conditioning unit works longer and may use more electricity to cool your house.

Looking for other ways to make your air conditioner run efficiently? Regular AC maintenance from PWA Heating & Cooling Inc heating and cooling technicians can help. We’ll clean and lubricate your equipment, and inspect important components. This often allows us to identify 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 ideas on choosing the ideal cover. 

Avoid Full Covers

To keep air circulating, a protective air conditioner cover should only enclose the top of your unit and a couple of inches on the side.

Full AC covers can trap condensation inside your unit, potentially rusting metal pieces. It could also make your air conditioner an inviting home 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 block air, which could cause condensation to build up inside your air conditioner. 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 want to use an air conditioner cover, here are the best times to put it on.

Cover Your Air Conditioner During Summer

A lightweight mesh cover during the summer allows your air conditioner to run unrestricted 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 stop leaves, nuts and other rubbish from getting 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 heavy snow is on the way. Snow and ice that accumulate inside your system can melt and refreeze, breaking condenser coils and reducing efficiency.

Although it’s not always possible to anticipate a hailstorm, you can temporarily cover your system if a severe storm is coming in Plainfield. Hail can seriously damage your system’s fins, 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, PWA Heating & Cooling Inc gives help. Give us a call at 815-410-1231 or schedule an appointment online.