Central air conditioning is great to have when you live in the Bay Area. But there is still the matter of what to do about the A/C unit that sits outside of your home. While AC units are very practical, they are not very attractive. There are ways, however, to use landscaping around your outdoor air conditioning unit or heat pump to minimize the visual impact while allowing the unit to operate efficiently.
Element Home Solutions does not provide landscaping services. But, we recommend following some of the steps shared here to protect your HVAC investment!
Use Landscaping to Hide your Outdoor Air Conditioning Unit
The AC unit needs to be kept clear of any obstructions and debris that could impact its performance, and local air conditioning maintenance and repair services need to access it easily for regular inspection. All of that makes landscaping difficult. But, it doesn’t make it impossible! You just need to incorporate your outdoor AC installation into your landscaping plans. Here are some ideas that might help.
Provide Your A/C Unit Plenty of Space
No matter what you do with your AC unit, you need to give it plenty of space to breathe. So, you should have at least 2 to 3 feet of space between the unit and any plants or structures. This gives it enough room to operate while still offering easy access for your annual air conditioner inspections. Make sure you also leave at least 5 feet of clearance between the top of your unit and any tree branches hanging above it.
Keep Your Installation in the Shade
While you don’t want to stay away from low-hanging tree branches, your air conditioning contractor will want to put your AC unit in a shady spot to help it run efficiently. Keeping your air conditioner out of direct sunlight will reduce solar heat gain and ensure that you get the most out of your central air.
Plant a Hedge to Hide the A/C Unit
Planting a hedge is a great way to conceal your AC unit as long as it’s not too close and you keep it trimmed. You can also plant some trees nearby if a manicured hedge seems too much for you to handle. If you decide to plant trees near the unit, stick to evergreens or trees that won’t lose their leaves in the winter.
Build a Stone Border Around the A/C Unit or Heat Pump
A big part of AC unit maintenance involves keeping debris away from the condenser coil. To keep grass and dirt away from your AC unit, put a low stone border around it. This might not stop everything from getting to your condenser coil, but it will keep grass clippings and leaves from getting too close while you mow or rake your lawn.
Keep Your Distance When Gardening
Speaking of lawn maintenance, always carefully work around the A/C unit or heat pump when doing yard work. Leaf blowers, in particular, stir up leaves and other debris. The same caution applies to your lawnmower or any of your other gardening equipment.
Work with Element Home Solutions for Air Conditioning Maintenance and Repairs
These landscaping ideas should be helpful, but above all your AC unit needs regular maintenance. If you are in need of any air conditioner repair services or it’s been over a year since your last inspection, contact Element Home Solutions.
We perform home HVAC maintenance and repairs throughout Oakland, East Bay, and the surrounding Bay Area. So, we are happy to take a look at your home comfort system to see how it is running. Contact us today for more information about our HVAC services.