June 19th, 2019
Why Brackets Make More Sense for Mounting an Air Conditioner
Installing a central air conditioner properly requires some careful planning, and not just about where the gasline set will need to go through the wall and in to the house. There are several factors that must be considered when deciding where the air conditioner should be placed on the outside of the home, including whether or not to simply place the unit on the ground, or if it should be raised up off the ground.
It’s certainly not uncommon to see air conditioners placed on top of a large patio stone or on a poured concrete slab, but these days you’ll see more and more air conditioners installed on brackets that are affixed to the side of the home and raise the unit off the ground. There are several reasons why you’d want your installers to put in a little extra effort to use raised brackets instead of placing the unit on a stone or slab. Let’s take a look at why installing your air conditioner on brackets is often the preferred method.
Air Conditioners are meant to be level.
An air conditioner unit is a complex piece of electrical and mechanical equipment, and they are designed and engineered to be operated while level and upright. The reason for this is fairly simple; the greater the angle or tilt that the air conditioner is on, the more pressure and stress will be placed on the nuts, bolts, connections, and fittings inside the unit. Over time, this added stress can cause parts or connections to wear prematurely, crack, or break, causing operational problems or even requiring the unit to be replaced.
If placed on a stone or slab that is not level, the air conditioner will constantly be on an angle, and it’s really hard to make it level once it’s already been installed and all the fittings are connected. In addition, patio stones or concrete slabs may shift as the ground underneath settles or perhaps even erodes with rain and water flow. This could cause the connections running between the unit and the home to become stressed, strained or warped. By installing the main unit on strong steel brackets mounted to the side of the home, the air conditioner will remain completely level, regardless of what happens to the ground underneath.
Avoid water pooling around the unit.
Another common problem that must be dealt with when placing equipment or machinery on the ground is the potential for pooling water. Standing water is extremely detrimental for metal equipment, causing rust, corrosion, and many other types of problems. If an air conditioner is placed on a slab or stone on the ground, you’ll need to take extra care to ensure that drainage is sufficient to avoid pooling water. By installing the unit up on brackets, you’ll avoid the risk of having the unit sit in standing or pooling water at any time, no matter how many unexpected rainstorms come by, or how fast the snow melts in the spring.
Keep them away from animals.
This may seem like a minor problem, but don’t underestimate the potential damage that animals can do! We’ve seen instances where cables and insulation have been gnawed on, nests have been built under or on top of units that have been inactive all winter, and several other types of animal-related problems. The simplest way to keep your AC unit away from little critters is to raise it up off the ground and reduce the chance that they’ll think it’s a good place to hang around.
Shorter connections & easier access for maintenance.
In addition to keeping the unit up off the ground for the advantages mentioned above, another bonus to having your air conditioner mounted on brackets is that it can reduce the length of cords, cables, and conduit needed to run the connections. This results in a faster and more efficient installation. Having the unit raised up also helps make it easier to service when it’s time for a regular inspection and maintenance visit.
Want to learn more?
Read about the Real Costs & Benefits of Installing a New Air Conditioner
A little extra planning before installation provides a lot of benefits!
As you can see, by taking these factors in to consideration before the unit is installed, you can avoid a lot of headaches and hassle down the road. Sure, it may be a few minutes faster to use a patio stone, but raising it up off the ground will provide more peace of mind over the long run. If you have questions about how to best install an air conditioner at your home, give the team at Gaslink a call today. Our home comfort experts will be happy to answer any and all of your concerns.