2 Mistakes To Avoid When Winterizing Your Home Central A/C Unit

Posted on: 27 October 2022


As colder weather approaches, you may either find that you need to run your air conditioner sporadically or not at all. Because of this, you may be thinking about taking steps to prepare the unit for the upcoming winter months. Getting the central air conditioning unit ready is fairly straightforward, requiring that you shut off the power, clean the exterior of the unit, and place a cover over it.

However, you still need to take special care to ensure that it is not damaged during the winter season. Below are a couple of mistakes that you should avoid when winterizing your home's central A/C unit.

1. Ignoring Any Damage You May Find While Cleaning the Unit

As part of the preparation steps, you will need to clean the exterior of the air conditioner. While removing leaves, twigs, and other debris, you should be keeping an eye out for any signs of damage, such as cracks in the drainage tube or visible bending of the fan blades.

If you do find any evidence of damage, do not simply ignore it, planning on taking care of it next spring. These damaged areas will only become worse once the unit is subjected to rapid temperature changes as well as snow and ice accumulation.

If you do find any damage, have a repair professional come take a look at it so that they can fix it before wintry weather has a chance to make it worse.

2. Covering the Exterior of the A/C Unit Completely with Plastic

Another step in the winterizing process is to cover the exterior of the A/C unit. However, this does not mean covering the entire air conditioner with plastic. Doing so would allow condensation on the interior surface of the plastic.

This built-up moisture would then settle inside the unit, causing mold and mildew growth. Also, if the moisture were to freeze, the expansion of ice could damage the compressor or even the motor.

Instead, cover up only the top of the unit to keep the compressor protected while allowing airflow through the air conditioner. Place something heavy on top such as four bricks at the corners or a piece of plywood to keep the cover in place. If you are unsure what would be best for use as a cover, get recommendations from an HVAC specialist.

By covering only the top half of the air conditioner and making sure that any damaged areas are repaired by a professional before winter, you can help ensure that the system will be ready to use when you need it again when warm weather returns. If you do find any concerning damage or have questions about anything related to winterizing the unit, speak with a representative with a residential HVAC company in your area.

Contact an HVAC company to learn more.