Air Conditioner

How Much Space Should Stay Open Surrounding My Buellton Air Conditioner?

You probably don’t think too much about your air conditioner until it’s not working right. Or until your utility bills are suddenly climbing, even though you haven’t moved the thermostat.

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

An AC system that runs hot normally doesn’t last as long. And it likely will cost more to cool your Buellton home.

Allstar Heating & Air Conditioning can help when your air AC isn’t functioning right. Or keeping your Buellton house comfortable enough.

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Space Guidelines for Air Conditioners

So how much room does your air conditioner really call for?

Here’s what we recommend:

  • 1-foot minimum on all sides, including the rear. 
  • 1.5-foot minimum for the sides and an alcove or adjacent wall. 
  • 2 feet between the sides of the unit and dense 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 blockage, like a deck or roof overhang.

While doing yardwork, keep your unit clear of grass clippings and leaves. Yard waste 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 a problem. Call us at 805-242-9638 for help or make 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 temperate climate, you may have a heat pump rather than an air conditioner. This outdoor unit creates both heat and air conditioning for your house.

It needs open space all year, especially if it snows. Get rid of snow that gathers on the top and near the sides of the unit.

If your heat pump fills with wintry precipitation, turn it off. Use warm water to melt snow and ice and give the water a little while to drain before putting your system back on.

Related: Heat Pumps Year-Round Comfort

Schedule Annual Maintenance with Allstar Heating & Air Conditioning

Overdue for regular air conditioner maintenance? Give us a call at 805-242-9638 today!

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

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