air conditioner + dog pee = disaster

Home Inspector with Electrospec Home Inspection Services

Urine damages condenser coils

Urine is acidic and will quickly damage your air conditioner, especially if the unit is running when your pet piddles on it. The fan will suck the urine through the coils and distribute it inside the cabinet, causing unseen damage.

This kind of damage significantly affects system performance and lifespan. Removing the animal from the area will not stop the corrosion from progressing. Unless the entire unit is professionally cleaned (hopefully in time) the final result may be replacement of the unit - which usually means replacement of the entire central air conditioning system. Warranty replacement would be unlikely.

Ensuring your pet barrier is high enough to keep Fido off the machine, it should be placed not less than 1 metre from the unit, and constructed in a fashion which will allow unimpeded airflow. Don't forget to include a gate for access to clean or service your air conditioner, and to cover it before winter arrives.


A great idea:

New air conditioners are often installed on a wall rack, at a height well above the dog pee range - which also minimizes accumulation of leaves, grass and other debris inside the unit, as well a guarding against physical contact with lawnmowers, garden tools and hockey pucks.



How much does central air cost?

Comments (4)

Shawn and Angela Miller
Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Amabassador Real Estate - Lincoln, NE
Lincoln and Omaha, NE REALTORS®

I know what dog pee does to yards, but A/C fins..... wow!

Mar 04, 2018 12:35 PM
Gil Strachan

Just Google "urine damage air conditioner" or similar keywords.

Mar 04, 2018 08:16 PM
1~Judi Barrett
Integrity Real Estate Services 116 SE AVE N, Idabel, OK 74745 - Idabel, OK
BS Ed, Integrity Real Estate Services -IDABEL OK

I had no idea that this could happen.  I've not seen this kind of damage on an AC unit! 

Mar 04, 2018 03:28 PM
Gil Strachan

I don't see it very often but when I do, it's a real mess!

Mar 04, 2018 03:48 PM
Mel Ahrens, MBA, Kelly Right Real Estate
Kelly Right Real Estate - Hood River, OR
Customized Choices for your Real Estate Needs

From the damage, it must have been a huge pack of dogs in the neighborhood marking their territory.  I was not aware of it being an issue.  Now I need to to be sure our dogs don't do the same.

Mar 04, 2018 04:47 PM
Gil Strachan

It only takes one. I find a substantial number of  homeowners installing a dog runs on the relatively unused side of the house, where A/C units and other utilities face opposing houses, in typical subdivision settings.

Mar 04, 2018 08:15 PM
William Feela
Realtor, Whispering Pines Realty 651-674-5999 No.

Had not seen this before or even head of it.I wll be telling people about this

Mar 04, 2018 05:54 PM