Here’s Why Rain Doesn’t Hinder Your Outdoor A/C Component
You know the A/C evaporator and air handler are well protected from bad weather inside your home, but what about the the costly compressor that’s outside of it? If you’re like most homeowners, you’ve probably wondered, “Does rain affect my air conditioner?”
The answer to that question is, “No.” Here’s an explanation why.
The A/C Compressor Can Withstand the Elements
A central air conditioner compressor is especially built to withstand the elements, including rain. The durable construction ensures years of trouble-free operation and service, even though it sits outside in different types of weather.
It’s also perfectly safe to run the A/C when it’s raining. Since humidity is higher while it’s raining, operating the air conditioner helps remove excess moisture from the indoor air, so you feel cooler and more comfortable.
But Wait, the Weather Can Impact the A/C Compressor
Oftentimes, rain is accompanied by potentially harmful weather events. These include:
- Lightning. Power surges can happen when lightning occurs during a rain storm. The best way to safeguard the outdoor compressor is to turn off the breaker that controls the A/C before a storm passes through.
- Flooding. Heavy rains can sometimes cause a flash flood or water backup that submerges the compressor. If this occurs, a short circuit in the electrical components can ruin the fan motor, wiring or electronics. Even if you’ve wisely shut off the breaker beforehand, have the unit checked by a reputable, licensed HVAC professional before you restore power.
- High winds or hail. Severe weather often brings heavy rain and high winds. Under the right conditions, storms can produce hail. One effective way to protect the outdoor A/C unit from damage is to install a fitted, breathable cover. Alternately, put plywood on top of the compressor and add a concrete block or heavy rock to keep it in place. Never use plastic or a tarp. Each traps humidity and moisture that can corrode the equipment.
For expert answers to curious questions and other home comfort concerns in the Orange Park and Jacksonville area, contact Mike Merritt Heating & Air Conditioning.
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