Tips to best Protect Your A/C from Storms and Hurricanes  

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It’s Hurricane and Storm Season!

Air Masters of Tampa Bay wants you to be prepared to weather every summer storm. Here is some of our best advice for staying cool and protecting your A/C unit at the same time. 

  1. Pre-cool your home. If your power goes out during a storm, cooling your home in advance allows you  and your family to stay comfortable until power is restored. Set your thermostat to a cooler setting than usual. Close curtains and blinds and keep doors and windows shut to keep the cold air inside.
  2. Turn off electricity to your air conditioner. Power surges from lightning strikes during the storm can damage your A/C . Debris could also get stuck in your outdoor unit and burn out the motor. We recommend you turn off power from your thermostat and circuit breaker. We advise installing a surge protector for your A/C unit to guard against lightning before and after a storm. 
  3. Cover your outdoor A/C unit. This is only really necessary if you’re expecting a hurricane and high winds. After you’ve turned off your air conditioner, cover it with a heavy tarp or thick ( not flimsy) plywood to protect it from flying debris. High winds can knock down branches and trees that could damage your unit and puncture the coil. Installing a wire mesh barrier around your A/C condenser can also prove very effective. Be sure to remove the covering as soon as it’s safely possible. Keeping your unit covered too long can trap moisture which leads to mold and mildew.
  4. Secure the unit. If you have an elevated air conditioner on a second story, be sure to secure your outdoor condenser unit  with hurricane straps to keep it in place during strong wind gusts. If your area is prone to flooding, you will want to call on Air Masters of Tampa Bay to elevate your unit for better protection. 
  5. This is very important —Check for damage before you turn your air back on! Flooding  or flying debris could have damaged your unit and turning it on can make the problem worse. Also, storm winds many cause disconnections within your AC unit, which could lead to toxic refrigerant leaks. Do turn your A/C on as soon as it seems safe. This will keep mold and mildew from settling in.
  6. Contact Air Masters of Tampa Bay if you have problems or need repairs: Your safest approach is to call us to inspect your unit for suspected damage after the storm. This will give you professional peace of mind that your unit is operating safely and properly.