Do I Need to Cover My Central Air Unit in The Winter?

Posted: August 7, 2023

Modern Units Are Built to Withstand the Elements

With temperatures finally cooling off, we can turn more of our attention to getting our homes ready for the winter season. One question that always comes up around this time of year involves the outdoor condensing unit of central air conditioning systems.

Some people think it’s best to keep the unit covered to protect it from winter’s wrath. At first, this seems logical, but here’s why we advise you not to do this.

First, modern outdoor cooling units have been built to withstand harsh winter weather conditions. This obviously eliminates the need for a cover. But there’s another important reason: completely covering up your outdoor air conditioner unit can allow moisture to build up, eventually leading to the growth of harmful mold.

With that said, there is something you can do with your outdoor A/C unit in the months ahead. Keep the area around the condenser clear of debris, such as leaves and twigs. Keeping the outdoor unit free of any obstructions will help minimize the chance of excessive moisture collecting within your unit. Of course, you’ll want to clear this area of snow and ice after a winter storm.

To protect and help extend the life of your outdoor A/C unit, it’s important to have the indoor coils cleaned regularly to ensure it continues to work efficiently. Dirty coils will compromise the performance of your central air system. Your home will not get as cool as before and you’ll spend more on electricity.

Cleaning the coils is just one of the tasks our technicians perform when they do an air conditioning tune-up. The best time to do this is in early spring, before the weather heats up. Our technician will also clean and inspect the fan and motor assemblies, as well as making sure the condensate drains are clear of any debris.

During this time, they can also make minor repairs that can improve air conditioning performance and potentially help prevent bigger issues and a higher repair cost in the future.

Winter Prep for Your Heating System

While we’re on the subject of preparing for winter, this is the time of year when you’ll want to test your heating system and make sure it’s working as it should so you’ll be all set to go when your home really needs heat.

If you turned your thermostat a few degrees above room temperature but your heating system doesn’t turn on, follow these steps:

  1. See if the power switches to your oil boiler or oil furnace have been accidentally turned off.
  2. See if there is oil or propane in your storage tank.
  3. Check for weak or dead batteries in your thermostat.
  4. Check for a blown fuse or tripped circuit breaker.
  5. As a last resort, press the reset button on the burner (but only once).

If you still can’t get heat, contact us for service.

Heating System Maintenance

The best way to avoid having a no-heat problem this winter is to get heating maintenance done now. Wilson offers service plans that cover the cost of maintenance and provide repair coverage.

Don’t delay in scheduling your tune-up. Now that it’s autumn our schedule is already filling up and we’ll get busier and busier the closer we get to winter.
Regular maintenance for your heating system is worth the investment. A heating system that doesn’t receive regular maintenance will lose efficiency and cost you more to run.

By getting a tune-up now, you’ll enter winter knowing your equipment is running safely and efficiently. Plus, since most breakdowns can be avoided with regular maintenance, getting a tune-up now will allow one of our expert technicians to find and fix any minor issues before they become more serious and costly.

Wilson Oil & Propane is the company that people in the Delaware Valley region of Pennsylvania, Delaware and New Jersey can depend on when they need us.

We have the professional technicians who can handle all types of HVAC service, from annual maintenance to emergency heating system repairs to top-notch heating equipment replacement.

Become a Wilson Oil and Propane customer and start meeting The People You Can Trust.