Do I Need to Cover My Air Conditioner?

October 18, 2019

With cold weather approaching in Temple/Belton, you may be questioning when you should cover your outdoor air conditioner. Of if you should even cover it at all.

Your AC unit is a tough piece of equipment. It’s engineered to withstand bad weather, including extreme temperatures and relentless precipitation.

Sometimes covers do more harm than good, because they can trap water. Additional wetness inside your unit can cause internal parts to rust or get moldy.

While installing an air conditioner cover is a personal choice, there are two times of year that are good to use a cover for a long period of time—fall and summer.  

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

Looking for other ways to make your air conditioner run efficiently? Annual AC maintenance from Bell Air Conditioning Inc heating and cooling technicians can help. We’ll clean and lubricate your equipment, and inspect essential pieces. This often allows us to pinpoint trouble 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 tips on selecting the best cover. 

Avoid Full Covers

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

Complete AC covers can trap water inside your system, potentially rusting metal parts. It could also make your system a welcoming area for animals, which could chew 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 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 choose 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 block leaves, nuts and other debris from falling 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 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 anticipate a hailstorm, you can temporarily cover your air conditioner if a strong storm is coming in Temple/Belton. 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, Bell Air Conditioning Inc gives aid. Give us a call at 254-307-9572 or schedule an appointment online.