3 Things You Need to Know About HVAC and Weather


Published on: January 19, 2021

IMPORTANT NOTE: . Our company is located in British Columbia, Canada. If you are reading this article in another location, we hope you enjoy the information, but unfortunately we cannot service you. 

It’s been a soggy year for Vancouver and the Lower Mainland already! The rain just keeps on coming down, and some of you may be concerned about your HVAC in this weather. The good news is that most of the outdoor heat pumps on the market are built to endure harsh weather conditions such as rain and snow. However, rain (which we’ll focus on for today) can have its downside as well. For the sake of preserving your valuable heating and cooling resources, here are three things worth knowing about your HVAC systems and the rain.

  1. Built to Last

The design of outdoor heat pumps or air conditioners is what we refer to commonly as a ‘split system’. This means there are two units specifically located inside and outside each. The indoor unit is where the evaporator coil and blower is located, while the outdoor unit features the condenser and compressor. Heat is pumped from inside of your home from the indoor unit and then expelled to the outdoors. These two units can also be used for cooling purposes.

What this all means is that because an outdoor unit is typically required to perform heating and cooling, it’s been built by design to withstand harsh weather conditions such as heavy rain, snow, hail, and sleet. This is done via sealing off all electrical components within the unit by using sturdy and corrosion-proof materials such as aluminum, plastics, and copper.

That being said, just because precautions have been made doesn’t mean your unit is completely invulnerable. Rain is not the only hazard to watch out for, but rather other components. We’re referring to things such as falling tree branches, flooding downpours of rain, salty air (which is also a cause of corrosion), and any wind-driven debris such as dirt. All of these when combined with rain can prevent your outdoor unit from performing its heating and cooling tasks efficiently. This is why we always recommend regular maintenance and cleaning of your units.

  1. A Rule Worth Mentioning

This tip is more for us HVAC technicians than anything, but it’s basically a rule worth mentioning to our customers: we don’t work with HVAC in the rain. (find source) Our team at Rep-Air follows this rule as well for an obvious reason: it’s just not safe. Most HVAC systems that are located outdoors are powered using electricity, and we need to inspect that kind of resource in order to diagnose and create a solution to your current HVAC problems. Rain + electricity = electrical shock that could be fatal. Other accidents that could happen involve slipping and falling due to rain puddles and concrete. In addition, severe weather such as lightning and high winds are simply not safe for anyone to work in at all.

As a general rule, we don’t work in such conditions, however if it’s an emergency then we’ll make an exception. Always check with us first, but you should never be surprised if your technician has to wait for the weather to clear up before they can work on your outdoor unit, especially if it’s located on the rooftop.

  1. Don’t Cover Your Unit

You may be wondering if it’s actually okay to cover the outdoor HVAC unit up so it’s more protected from rain and other weather hazards. The truth is, this is not something we recommend you doing and in general it’s not a good idea either. Your unit was built to withstand moisture and extreme temperatures outside, for one. For another, even if it’s miserable outside, proper airflow is needed so that your unit performs its job correctly. By covering it up, you’re in turn preventing the unit from heating up or cooling down, which can do more harm than good. Moisture when it’s allowed to evaporate is not a problem. It’s when the moisture gets trapped under a cover where problems can arise, such as corrosion and other damage.

NEVER stack anything on top of your unit either, especially when it’s running. Again, the unit needs air to flow in and out of it without hindrance. If you’re absolutely concerned about things falling onto the unit and causing damage, speak to a professional technician beforehand. They may have to relocate the unit for you to an area where it can function properly.

Need Help?

If you’re stuck with a faulty HVAC system or your outdoor unit is on the fritz, no matter what kind of weather you see outside we can help. If you’ve noticed any leaks or signs of water damage to your unit, then that’s when you need to call our technicians. Even if it’s raining out, we’re always a phone call away to guide you or serve you in case of an emergency. At Rep-Air Heating And Cooling we provide our customers with many options that will best suit your needs from heating and cooling to refrigeration. Contact us today for your complimentary quote: 1-833-487-2653 or contact@repairheatingandcooling.com and don’t forget to take a look at our website: https://repairheatingandcooling.com. Follow us on Facebook and Instagram for free giveaways!

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