Covering Your A/C Condenser Unit in Winter
Add a simple plywood cover for winter protection.
An hour or less
IntroductionCover your air conditioner condenser with plywood for the winter. If you wrap it with plastic, it'll rust.
Protect the A/C Compressor
Though the condenser unit is built for outdoor elements, it can still be damaged by falling icicles and other debris. You don’t need to invest in a waterproof cover. In fact, many manufacturers recommend against it, because it creates a warm space for critters and causes condensation, which can lead to early corrosion.
You shouldn’t wrap your entire air conditioner for the winter. But you should consider setting a piece of plywood on top of the unit to protect the fan from damage caused by falling icicles. Here are a few tips to fix a sinking air conditioner pad.
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Cover Your Air Conditioner Condenser with Plywood
- Plywood weighted down with bricks does a good job of protecting your air conditioner condenser in winter.
- If you want to protect the metal and keep it looking good, give your condenser a coat of car wax before the snow flies. Here are a few more tips to hide an AC unit outside.
Don’t wrap it!
- Wrapping your condenser can cause rust.
- Even when wrapped tightly, your condenser isn’t airtight. That means moisture gets trapped under your tarp and condenses on the inside of the unit.
- Covering an A/C condenser also encourages rodents to move the family into new digs where they’re protected from the elements.
- Pro tip: Once they’re settled in, they’ll gnaw on the compressor wiring and insulation. Come spring, you’ll have a stinky cleanup, a rusty A/C condenser and a hefty bill for rewiring.