Don’t Let Thunderstorms do a Number on Your A/C

We’ve been experiencing lots of thunderstorms in our area and dealing with the damaging effects they can produce. Lightning strikes can do significant damage to electrical equipment and your air conditioning unit is vulnerable. I have mentioned in previous blogs the importance of surge protectors to protect your HVAC equipment. For those who don’t have a surge protector, there are some steps you can take to protect your air conditioner from being struck by lightning.If you hear thunder, you are within the range of a potential lightning strike. When thunder occurs, turn your air conditioner completely off. You can consult your owner’s manual because the proper steps can vary. At the very least, turn your air conditioner off at the thermostat. In the event of severe heavy rain, covering the outside unit, if possible, will prevent flooding of the interior compartment that could short out sensitive electronic components.
Wait at least thirty minutes after a storm has passed before you turn your a/c unit back on. Start by turning the thermostat on and lowering the temperature to a level that will kick the unit on. If the a/c fails to produce cool air, chances are a circuit breaker has been tripped. One breaker will be in your home’s electrical panel and the other will be inside an electrical box near your outside unit.
With the air conditioner off during a thunderstorm, you can expect the temperature and the humidiy to rise. If you will open your windows slightly for ventilation this will be helpful. The lower floors of your home will be cooler as heat rises. If the weather is severe, a basement is always the safest place to wait out a storm.
If your air conditioner is hit by lightning, call MTB Heating and Air. One of our technicians can assess the damage and make any necessary repairs.