Air conditioners are constructed to resist precipitation, including rain and snow. However, if your outdoor air conditioner is immersed in standing water from a torrential downpour, this may seriously damage the electrical components in it. Your AC unit is most likely to be damaged if the floodwater rises above a foot deep. Still, if the equipment has flooded at all, call Service Experts Heating & Air Conditioning at 318-588-8163 for an air conditioning inspection.
If extreme flooding has taken place or is likely to take place, follow these directions to avoid damaging your AC unit or creating dangerous operating conditions.
Don’t cover your air conditioner with anything. A plastic sheet won’t keep out water. Instead, it will trap moisture inside, encourage rust, encourage mold growth and give pests a spot to hide.
If you reside in a flood-prone location, research moving your air conditioner on a high stand. This elevates the system above possible floodwaters and can save you hassle and expense following the next downpour.
Another way to care for your air conditioning unit is to install a retaining wall around it. This technique can stop air conditioner flooding, even as water collects around it. Similarly, you can place sandbags around the equipment when you know a storm is approaching.
If hail is expected, you can place sections of plywood across the top of the air conditioner to guard it from hail damage. Weigh the wood down safely with stones or bricks in case the wind gets stronger.
Don’t turn on your AC while it’s surrounded by water. Doing so can lead to an electrical shock hazard or potentially damage the internal system components.
To prevent this damage, turn off the power to the air conditioner and thermostat. The quickest method for accomplishing this is to go to the HVAC and thermostat breakers in your junction box and turn them to the “off” position. If you want a second opinion, call an air conditioning service company like Service Experts Heating & Air Conditioning.
Once the rain moves on, you want your air conditioner to dry out as soon as possible. Remove standing water, if possible, and remove any debris from the surrounding area.
Don’t turn on the system until it has been checked by an HVAC expert. Even after it has dried out, using flood-damaged equipment may cause the same hazards as turning on the air conditioning while it’s still submerged in water. Some problems require days or weeks to begin having symptoms, so it’s ideal to keep your air conditioning turned off until you have the okay from an HVAC professional.
While you wait for your service visit, read through your homeowner’s insurance policy to see if flood damage secures your outdoor cooling system. If so, take pictures of the damage and present your claim right away. If you don’t have flood insurance, you may still be covered if the air conditioner has experienced wind or hail damage.
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