Air conditioners are built to resist weather, like rain and snow. However, if your outdoor air conditioner is submerged in standing water from a torrential downpour, this might seriously damage the electrical components within. Your cooling is most likely to get damaged if the floodwater reaches a foot deep. Still, if the system has flooded at all, call Service Experts Heating & Air Conditioning at 330-269-7235 for an air conditioning inspection.
If extreme flooding has taken place or is likely to take place, follow these directions to avoid hurting your AC unit or making 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, hasten mold growth and give animals a place to hide.
If you are in a flood-prone spot, consider moving your air conditioner on a high base. This elevates the unit above possible floodwaters and can save you hassle and expense when you have to deal with the next downpour.
Another way to safeguard your air conditioning equipment is to install a retaining wall around it. This technique can prevent air conditioner flooding, even as water surges around it. Similarly, you can pile sandbags around the unit when you are alerted a storm is coming.
If hail is predicted, you can secure boards of plywood across the top of the air conditioner to protect it from hail damage. Weigh the boards down safely with stones or bricks in case the wind picks up.
Don’t use your AC while it’s surrounded by water. Doing so may result in an electrical shock hazard or possibly destroy the internal system components.
To prevent these problems, switch off the power to the air conditioning and thermostat. The easiest method for accomplishing this is to locate the HVAC and thermostat breakers in your junction box and flip them to the “off” position. If you need a second opinion, contact an air conditioning service company like Service Experts Heating & Air Conditioning.
Once the rain moves on, you want your system to dry out as soon as possible. Draw away standing water, if possible, and remove any debris from the nearby area.
Don’t start the air conditioner until it has been checked by an HVAC professional. Even after it has dried out, operating flood-damaged equipment might present the same hazards as turning on the air conditioning while it’s still underwater. Some troubles require days or weeks to begin having 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 technician to arrive, review your homeowner’s insurance policy to see if flood damage covers your outdoor air conditioning system. If so, take photos of the damage and process your claim as soon as possible. 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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