Air conditioners are constructed to endure precipitation, including rain and snow. However, if your outdoor air conditioner is flooded with standing water from a torrential downpour, this can critically damage the electrical components within. Your AC unit is most likely to be damaged if the floodwater exceeds a foot deep. Still, if the unit has flooded at all, call Service Experts Heating & Air Conditioning at 330-235-1260 for an air conditioning inspection.
If bad flooding has taken place or is likely to occur, follow these steps to avoid harming your air conditioner or generating dangerous operating conditions.
Don’t cover your air conditioner with a tarp. A plastic sheet won’t repel water. Instead, it will trap moisture inside, lead to rust, cause mold growth and give animals a place to hide.
If you are in a flood-prone area, consider installing your air conditioner on a high base. This elevates the equipment above possible floodwaters and can save you trouble and expense after the next downpour.
Another method to safeguard your air conditioning equipment is to build a retaining wall around it. This technique can stop air conditioner flooding, even as water rises around it. Similarly, you can place sandbags around the equipment when you are alerted a storm is on the way.
If hail is in the forecast, you can secure pieces of plywood across the top of the air conditioner to guard it from hail damage. Weigh the plywood down safely with stones or bricks in case the wind gets stronger.
Don’t run your AC while it’s surrounded by water. Doing so could result in an electrical shock hazard or possibly destroy the internal system components.
To skip these problems, disconnect the power to the AC and thermostat. The quickest method for doing this is to find the HVAC and thermostat breakers in your junction box and turn them to the “off” position. If you need assistance, contact an air conditioning service company like Service Experts Heating & Air Conditioning.
Once the rain moves on, you want your air conditioner to dry out swiftly. Siphon off standing water, if possible, and clean any debris from the nearby area.
Don’t start the system until it has been evaluated by an HVAC professional. Even after it has dried out, using flood-damaged equipment might cause the same hazards as turning on the air conditioning while it’s still under the water. Some issues need days or weeks to begin showing symptoms, so it’s wise to keep your air conditioner turned off until you receive the go-ahead from an HVAC tech.
While you wait for your appointment, go over your homeowner’s insurance policy to see if flood damage protects your outdoor cooling system. If so, take photos of the damage and submit your claim as soon as possible. If you don’t have flood insurance, you might still be covered if the air conditioner has suffered wind or hail damage.
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