Do I Need to Cover My Air Conditioner?

October 18, 2019

With cold weather approaching in Chadron, you may be thinking 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 severe weather, including extreme temperatures and heavy precipitation.

Sometimes covers create more issues, because they can trap moisture. Additional 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 times of year that are ideal for using a cover for a lengthy period of time—fall and summer.  

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

Wanting other ways to make your air conditioner run efficiently? Annual AC maintenance from MPC Heating & Cooling heating and cooling experts can help. We’ll clean and lubricate your system, and inspect essential components. This often allows us to pinpoint 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 suggestions on picking the ideal cover. 

Avoid Full Covers

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

Complete AC covers can trap moisture inside your equipment, potentially corroding metal parts. It could also make your system a welcoming place for animals, which could sever 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 moisture 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 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 halt leaves, nuts and other waste from dropping 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 blizzard is approaching. 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 expect a hailstorm, you can temporarily cover your AC if a severe storm is coming in Chadron. 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, MPC Heating & Cooling provides assistance. Give us a call at 308-832-4321 or schedule an appointment online.