24/7 Emergency Support

Do I Need to Cover My Air Conditioner?

October 18, 2019

With cold weather approaching in Racine, you may be wondering 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 engineered to take on bad weather, including excessive temperatures and heavy precipitation.

Sometimes covers do more harm than good, because they can trap moisture. Additional wetness inside your equipment can cause internal components to rust or become moldy.

While installing an air conditioner cover is your own choice, there are two times of year 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 build up and obstruct your system’s airflow. Reduced airflow means your air conditioning unit works harder and may use more energy to cool your home.

Seeking other ways to make your air conditioner run efficiently? Routine AC maintenance from Keystone Heating & Air Conditioning Co., Inc heating and cooling experts can help. We’ll clean and lubricate your equipment, and inspect essential 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 several ideas on selecting the right cover. 

Avoid Full Covers

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

Total AC covers can trap moisture inside your unit, potentially eating away at metal pieces. It could also make your AC a welcoming place for vermin, 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 unit. The best type of material 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 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 freely 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 debris 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 coming. Snow and ice that build up inside your system can melt and refreeze, damaging condenser coils and decreasing efficiency.

Although it’s not always possible to expect a hailstorm, you can temporarily cover your system if a severe storm is coming in Racine. Hail can severely 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, Keystone Heating & Air Conditioning Co., Inc provides aid. Give us a call at 262-358-9468 or schedule an appointment online.