How Severe Weather Can Affect Your Air Conditioner

When summer hits its peak, your air conditioning may work double-time to keep your Daytona Beach home cool and comfortable. While a lot of summer days are warm and beautiful, most people are no stranger to dangerous weather. Stormy conditions, and even days with significant heat and humidity, can impact your air conditioner’s performance, efficiency and longevity. Explore the many ways weather can affect your AC and how to protect it.

Impact of Weather on Your Air Conditioner


A variety of weather conditions can alter how well your air conditioning unit works. On very hot days, the AC must work harder to achieve the set temperature. The increased workload might lead to an overburdened system, causing a breakdown.

Extreme humidity also presents a potentially tricky situation. While air conditioners are made26 to dehumidify the air as they cool it, excessive humidity can strain the system. This may result in diminished performance and a less comfortable home.


Prolonged high temperatures force your air conditioner to run constantly, causing a spike in energy bills. If a home’s HVAC system is not designed or put in correctly, it may be unable to meet the cooling demand under these conditions.

In contrast, the condensing unit is at risk if it functions in subfreezing conditions. Attempting to run the air conditioner when the outdoor unit is covered in ice can damage the compressor, reducing efficiency and possibly causing a total breakdown of your cooling system.

Weather-Induced Damage

Substantial rain, wind, hail or snow can harm a home's outdoor AC unit. Debris from storms can block airflow, reduce system efficiency or hammer away at the metal. When water floods the system, corrosion or short-circuiting may occur, shortening the life of your unit.

The outdoor AC unit is vulnerable to dangerous weather, but you can take preventive measures to secure it. Here’s how to shield your air conditioner from severe incoming weather:

  • Install your air conditioner in the shade: A shaded outdoor unit doesn’t have to operate as vigorously, enhancing efficiency and prolonging the unit’s life span. If possible, put the air conditioner on the north or east side of your home or somewhere else shaded during the hot afternoon.
  • Invest in an air conditioner cover: AC covers work as a protective shield. During the winter season or when severe weather is expected, consider covering your air conditioner to protect it from flying debris, falling ice and heavy snowfall. Don't forget, though, to make sure you don’t attempt to run the air conditioner while the outdoor unit is covered.
  • Maintain your HVAC system regularly: Routine maintenance is a simple and easy measure to enhance your AC unit’s overall health. After all, a regularly serviced air conditioner is less likely to buckle under the stress of extreme temperatures or humidity. Regular cleaning, filter replacement and comprehensive inspections ensure your system stays in top-notch condition and is ready to face any weather.
  • Install a surge protector: Power surges are a common result of storms that can ruin your AC unit’s electrical components. Installing a surge protector adds an extra layer of defense. Alternatively, you can easily switch off your AC during severe weather by flipping the circuit breaker.
  • Secure and elevate your outdoor unit: Gusty winds can cause the outdoor air conditioning unit to fall over or move. Likewise, rising water can flood the internal components. Ensure your outdoor unit is properly secured and raised on bricks or platforms designed to protect it from wind and water damage.
  • Clear your yard of debris: Keep the space around your air conditioner clear of loose things that could become harmful projectiles. This helps protect against denting and other physical damage during severe weather.

Checking on Your AC After a Storm

In the aftermath of very bad weather, follow these steps to be sure your air conditioner is able to continue to operate safety:

  • Conduct a visual inspection: When the sky clears, go outdoors and inspect your unit. Check for issues108 such as dents, exposed wires or an off-kilter base.
  • Clear debris: Get rid of any leaves, tree limbs and other debris to improve airflow and efficiency.
  • Look for water damage: If your property suffered flooding, look for water damage. If you believe water entered the unit, it’s a very good idea not to turn it on until you have it professionally serviced.
  • Schedule a timely repair: In the case of storm damage, don’t postpone air conditioning repair, or you risk increased energy costs, a reduced life span or total system failure.

Contact Service Experts Heating & Air Conditioning

No one wants to feel the impact of severe weather, but it’s critical to be prepared and understand how to recover. At Service Experts Heating & Air Conditioning, we offer post-storm inspections and repairs to ensure your air conditioning system runs safely and efficiently. Our team can handle all your AC service needs in Daytona Beach, including maintenance, repair and replacement. Don’t let severe weather impact your indoor comfort—contact a Service Experts office near you for more information or to schedule a visit today.

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