You probably haven't thought about having to protect your AC unit from your dog. Dogs are wonderful. They greet you after a long day of work, cuddle with you at the end of the day, and keep you company on long walks. Even though we all love our pups, they can cause severe damage to outdoor AC units. Dog urine is corrosive and can force parts of your system to break down. Even with protective grates, dog urine can still cause damage since it doesn't protect the unit itself from corrosion.
It can be hard to know if your dog is causing damage to your outdoor unit, but ignorance is not bliss. Corrosion can decrease your unit's efficiency, and it may even require you to replace either the condensing coil or the entire outdoor unit.
Take a minute and check your outdoor AC unit for signs of corrosion. Rust or other corrosion is a signal that you may need to take steps to protect your unit from your dog or other threats.
Air Conditioning has two primary purposes: to remove heat and remove humidity from the air in your home. In other words, AC conditions and improves the quality of the air. It starts by pulling air through the return and is pushed up by the blower. Next, the air passes through the coil and removes both heat and moisture out of the air. Then, air passes through the supply vents and back into your home. For more information about how an AC works, click here.
The primary job of the outdoor unit is to push the hot air from inside your home out so cold air can come in. First, the refrigerant enters through the condensing coil. Next, a fan blows air over the coil, which cools the coolant. Finally, the compressor circulates the cold refrigerant through the indoor unit to absorb heat. Your AC can't work efficiently if the outdoor unit is damaged.
Plant shrubs. Planting bushes close by or surrounding your unit may deter your pup from doing its business in the new shrubs instead of on the compressor.
Install a fence. Even a small physical barrier could protect your outdoor unit. Visit your local hardware store to inquire about material and cost options.
Use training techniques. Train your dog to urinate in a different part of the yard.
Remove debris. Because Kansas City has all four seasons, your outdoor unit will see snow, leaves, and rain. Regularly clear off anything that can block airflow so the fan can work properly.
Clean your system with a hose. Routinely spray the unit off with an outdoor hose, preferably with a spray nozzle. Be sure to wash away all dirt and grime built up over time.
Keep ground clear of weeds. Clear weeds and replace the area immediately surrounding the unit with mulch, to ensure nothing will hinder the system from doing its job.