Air Conditioner

How Much Space Should I Keep Open Near My Columbia Air Conditioner?

You most likely don’t think too much about your air conditioner until it’s not working suddenly. Or until your energy bills are suddenly skyrocketing, even though you haven’t touched the thermostat.

Your air conditioner draws in the surrounding air to cool and expels warm air as it function. But it can quickly overheat if it can’t get enough surrounding air or flush out hot air.

An AC system that runs hot usually doesn’t last as long. And it doubtlessly will cost more to cool your Columbia home.

Watts Electrical & Air Conditioning can help when your air AC isn’t running properly. Or keeping your Columbia house cool enough.

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Space Guidelines for Air Conditioners

So how large of an area does your air conditioner really call for?

Here’s what we recommend:

  • 1-foot minimum on all sides, including the back. 
  • 1.5-foot minimum for the sides and an alcove or adjacent wall. 
  • 2 feet between the sides of the unit and thick shrubs or solid fences. 
  • 6 inches between the sides and leafy plants, with a few extra inches left for growth.
  • 8 feet between the top and interference, like a deck or roof overhang.

While doing yardwork, keep your unit out of contact with grass clippings and leaves. Yard debris can congest your air conditioner and cause it to overheat.

Related: How to Clean Your Air Conditioner

How to Check if Your Air Conditioner is Overheating

  1. Turn the air conditioner on.
  2. Check the temperature a few inches from the coil. This is the metallic grate that surrounds your unit.
  3. Measure the temperature 10 feet away.

If the temperatures are the same, your system is working properly.

If the temperature is hotter near the coil, your system may have an issue. Call us at 601-736-7362 for a helping hand or schedule an appointment online.

Related: How to Keep Your Air Conditioner from Failing

How Much Space Does a Heat Pump Need?

If you live in a moderate climate, you may have a heat pump in place of an air conditioner. This outdoor unit provides both heat and air conditioning for your home.

It needs open space year round, especially if it snows. Clear away snow that gathers on the top and near the sides of the unit.

If your heat pump fills with wintry precipitation, shut it off. Use warm water to melt snow and ice and give the water a few minutes to drain before turning your system back on.

Related: Heat Pumps Year-Round Comfort

Schedule Annual Maintenance with Watts Electrical & Air Conditioning

Overdue for regular air conditioner maintenance? Give us a call at 601-736-7362 today!

A routine AC tune-up means your air conditioner is likely more efficient—and less likely to overheat. And it also helps our skilled technicians to locate small issues before they become costly problems.

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