Helpful Advice for Landscaping Around Your Air Conditioner Unit

June 23, 2015

Landscaping chores take up a good bit of a homeowner's energy in the summer. While you're working outdoors, don't forget to do some landscaping around your air conditioner unit. A/C maintenance should include keeping weeds, leaves, grass, shrubs and debris away from your outdoor compressor unit so it performs at its peak throughout the summer.Cleaning Around the A/C Allowing weeds, grass or shrubs to grow up around the A/C can have negative consequences. For one thing, it's harder for a service person to gain access to your condenser/compressor. Also, leaves and other debris can block airflow to the condenser and cause it to run hotter. Without sufficient airflow, the condenser is not able to discharge heat efficiently from the refrigerant. That means your A/C will have a shorter lifespan. Keep an area of about two feet around the unit clear-more is even better. Maintain a similar distance from any hard structures such as walls or garden features, and at least a four-foot clearance above the unit.

Other Tips for Good Airflow and Access

  • When mowing, direct grass away from the A/C unit so that clippings don't get inside the condenser housing.
  • Don't plant prickly bushes such as holly or roses around the unit.
  • It's fine to plant trees so that the unit is shaded. Shade will allow the compressor to run cooler. Just don't plant the trees too close so that they block airflow. Keep limbs trimmed so that none fall on and damage the housing.
  • Don't allow a bare area of loose sand or dirt to form around your outdoor A/C unit. Sand and dirt can blow into the unit and cause malfunctions. You particularly don't want to encourage conditions that make your condenser dirty.
  • Avoid weed whacking near the condenser. Flying debris can damage the coil and bend the aluminum fins. The thermostat wires might also be severed, resulting in a short in the transformer-an expensive A/C repair.

Call Lozier Heating and Cooling

For more information on landscaping around your A/C unit, contact the experts at Lozier Heating and Cooling. We provide premier service to central Iowa customers. Our goal is to help educate our customers in the greater Des Moines, Iowa area about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems).