I’m putting in a new concrete patio and would like to wrap it around the side of the house and place my two AC condensers on the new patio. I currently have a 20 year old 2.5 ton unit and a <1yr old 3 ton Carrier unit.
Why am I doing this???
Currently the units are in a small depression that allows water to pool in the area. By placing them on the patio, I will be able to elevate the area and slope the ground away from the area. In addition, the units will be on a solid level surface which is not the case today.
Where to go from here???
In my mind, I have two options to accommodate the new patio…
First; the condensers could be jacked up to allow enough room for the concrete to be poured underneath. The benefit of this option is that it will not cost any additional $s. The drawback of this option is the potential for damage to the units.
Second, the condensers could be disconnected and moved 10 feet, and then moved back and reconnected when the patio is complete. The benefit of this option is that it will be performed by a licensed AC company and the possibility of damage will be reduced. The drawback is that to perform the disconnect/reconnect, the charge is in the neighborhood of $800 for both units.
I have a couple of questions…
1. Am I missing any other... better options?
2. Which option makes the most sense?
Thanks in advance for the assistance.
You have risks either way.
To jack the units up you'll have to do it in a way that does not interfere with the concrete work. And do it in a way that will last through the concrete pour. The last thing you want happening is two condensing units crashing down into fresh mud when one of the mud monkeys bumps his bull float into the props holding the units up into the air.
Another risk here is that when you lift the units, the lineset gets kinked. Electrical can be a problem, also.
Here's to me the best option. Pick a spot just to one side of the patio and pour a slab for the condensers there. There are even precast slabs just for condensing units available. Pay a pro to move the units to that site and call it a day. You really won't like condensers sitting on the patio. What if someday you opt for a patio cover? Now you'll have these two humming heat makers dumping heat into an already warm area. Not all that conducive to a pleasant evening on the patio, I'd say.
One other factor is that condensers sitting on a patio are more subject to damage than a condenser standing by itself on its own pad away from human activity. If you have little ones, they may see the condenser as something fun to ram their trike into, as it might have a little give, and makes interesting designs when the condenser fins are crushed.
Building Physics Rule #1: Hot flows to cold.
Building Physics Rule #2: Higher air pressure moves toward lower air pressure
Building Physics Rule #3: Higher moisture concentration moves toward lower moisture concentration.
Thanks for the information... based on your advice, I decided to have the condensors temporarily disconnected. I'm glad I did. Not really sure I would have been comfortable with the concrete guys jacking the units up. Luckily, it is not hot yet in GA... making this project possible.