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What should I do if my AC unit was under water because of the recent flood in Alabama? (AC flood damage)

We have receive many calls due to the large amount of rain with ac flood damage. Here is a quick list of items to know about your air conditioner or heater.

First and foremost, go to your breaker panel and turn off the power to your AC unit.  More damage could occur if electricity flows into the unit. Second, contact your homeowners insurance company and see if you have any coverage from flooding or storm damage. Many policies exclude flood damage but will cover if a tree limb damages your AC unit. So if you have wind damage, make sure to mention this first before you mention the flood damage.

For the outdoor section:

  • Turn off the breaker
  • Have the coils cleaned. This should be done from the inside of the unit by removing the top of the unit.
  • If any electrical component was submerged, it should be removed and checked for corrosion and faults
  • The condenser fan motor could be damaged if the seal around the motor is bad. These motors are designed to be in the rain but not submerged.
  • Compressor terminals should be cleaned as rust and corrosion will build up over the next 60 to 90 days.

For the Indoor section:

  • Turn off the Breaker
  • Water will damage more components in the indoor (furnace or air handler) as their are many more electronic controls in this unit. They are also not built to be water resistant as they are usually installed in dry areas but many get installed in crawl spaces under homes. The unit should be a couple of inches off the ground but with the 6 inches of rain could easily submerge parts of the unit.
  • Turn off the AC unit at the thermostat. If the thermostat has a battery backup, there could still be low voltage signal being sent to the control boards in the submerged units.

Even if your unit survives the storm and starts working again, there could be damage to the motor winding of the blower motor than may show up in a couple of months as the metal corrodes or rusts. Water usually will shorten the life of motors.

All of these items are checked on a complete system cleaning and tune up. Schedule today online or by calling 205-444-4444.