With colder weather approaching, necessary preparations are in order. While you’re covering your patio furniture and barbeque, you may wonder, “Should I use an air conditioner cover?”
Whether an air conditioner cover is needed depends first and foremost on the weather conditions of your neighborhood. If you live in an area with typically extreme weather conditions, it may be beneficial to use extra protection. While air conditioner covers are not necessarily designed for mild climates, they can still be beneficial. Let us have a look at the possible hazards your air conditioner is exposed to.
What Factors Can Pose A Danger For My Air Conditioner?
An outside air conditioner unit must weather various seasonal changes. Some can be especially tough on the unit such as rain and snow. Particularly snow can be tricky, but not when it’s frozen. When snow gathers on your unit and temperatures rise, the snow will melt and make its way into the interior of the air conditioner. The water can cause rust and corrosion which leads to reduced efficiency of the machine.
And that’s not all. If temperatures drop, the water could refreeze around the condenser coils and weaken them. On top of that, freezing rain and snow can affect the air conditioner fins and put them out of place resulting in damage to your air conditioner.
Luckily, these potential dangers can be avoided by using a proper air conditioner cover. However, using a cover also brings its challenges. Discussing the benefits and drawbacks of using a cover should help you make an informed decision about whether you should get an air conditioner cover.
Advantages Using An Air Conditioner Cover
Most importantly, covering your air conditioner unit will keep it free from leaves, seeds, twigs, and other dirt that the rustling fall winds bring. The protection will also avoid snow from accumulating on your air conditioner unit. As discussed, when snow melts and refreezes it can cause unwanted moisture affecting the machine. That’s where a cover can help protect against the freezing cold by protecting the air conditioner unit from water.
To elaborate on the above, a cover can prevent the outside material from ending up in the drain system and clogging it up. Air conditioner units are typically not designed to keep debris out. A little amount of dirt does not have to be harmful but if it adds up to a larger amount, damage could be done. Moreover, decaying piles of leaves and grass can produce formic acid. If this builds up on the copper tubing it can go as far as to cause corrosion. The corrosion can eventually lead to tiny holes in the tubes of the unit.
A cover can keep leaves and such out but on top of that a cover will also keep dirt and dust away from the unit. This is beneficial as dirt and dust in your air conditioner decreases the indoor air quality. Dirt can lead to filthy air ducts, condenser coils, and fans. If these parts get dirty, it can worsen allergies and asthma of people.
Taking good care of your air conditioner will help in maintaining its efficiency. Consequently, a more efficient air conditioner means a lower electric bill as well as fewer costs for maintenance.
Disadvantages Of Covering Your Air Conditioner
Generally speaking, air conditioning units are designed to weather the outside elements such as wind, rain, and snow. As a result, an air conditioner cover is usually not included by the manufacturer. This means if you would like to use a cover this would need to be out of pocket. Finding the right measures and type of cover for your unit can take time and effort.
To achieve optimal functionality, choosing the right cover for your air conditioner is essential. It’s best to use a cover which protects the top of the unit — the most essential part. By covering up your air conditioner completely, you can possibly trap moisture which in turn can lead to mold or can freeze on the coils during the winter months.
As if that were not enough, the tempting full covers sure look like a nice home for rodents. Having rodents and such make a home in the cover can lead to damage of the air conditioner wires. Besides that, you’re probably not too excited to clean up the nests and feces left by the rodent family.
So should you use an air conditioner cover? Well, there are two sides to the story and arguments can be made for both. In the end it depends on your own preference and the severity of weather conditions in your area. If your area is tormented with lots of snow and freezing rain, it’s certainly good to consider buying a cover. However, keep in mind to buy a proper air conditioner cover that does not completely cover the unit.