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What is the best location for a heat pump condenser (outside unit)?

Tuesday, March 15, 2022

The two things that make an ideal location for a heat pump condenser are good air flow and shade. Keeping at least a foot of clear space around the unit, and not less than five feet above it is necessary. Also, do not limit air flow by installing the condenser at an inside corner or tightly surrounded by solid fencing to conceal it. 

    Providing shade for the condenser does not mean that it must have something directly over it. A nearby shade tree or wall that provides shade for part of the day is fine. Putting the condenser near an outside wall on the north or east side of the home avoids the sunnier west and south exposures. 

    Other considerations include: close to the air handler inside home, not in a street-facing location, and room for safe access for a service technician at the openable sides of the unit. Also see What is the best location for a heat pump air handler (indoor unit)?

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  To learn more about heat pump and air conditioner condensers, see these other blog posts:

How do I understand the air conditioner or heat pump condenser label (data plate)?

What is causing the outdoor unit (condenser) of my air conditioner to shake? 

How can I tell if an air conditioner uses R-22 or R-410A refrigerant? 

Why does an air conditioner condenser unit need to be level?

Can the disconnect box be mounted directly on a heat pump or air conditioning condenser? 

What is the code for minimum height of air conditioner or heat pump condenser mounting pad/slab above ground?

 Can I convert a heat pump or air conditioner from R-22 refrigerant to R-410A, or switch R-410A to R-22? 

How can I tell whether the condenser (outdoor unit) is an air conditioner or heat pump?

What is the small pipe sticking out of the eaves/soffit under the roof overhang?  

How much clearance is needed around an air conditioner? 

How can I make my Florida air conditioner last longer? 

What is the requirement for a service receptacle outlet for heating, air conditioning, and refrigeration (HACR) equipment?

Does an old air conditioner use more electricity as it ages?

Does the condenser (outdoor unit) SEER rating determine the SEER of an air conditioning system? 

When does the ban on R-22 air conditioning refrigerant take effect?  

Why is it bad to have a clothes dryer vent near an air conditioning condenser (outdoor unit)?  

What is an air conditioning heat recovery system? 

My air conditioner outside unit (condenser) won't start and is making a humming noise. What's wrong?

The coolant line to the outside unit of my air conditioner is frozen. What's wrong? 

• Does the mounting pad have to be replaced to install at new heat pump or air conditioner condenser (outside unit)? 

• What is the required clearance for access and working space in front a heat pump or air conditioning condenser (outside unit)? 

• What is the difference between a fan coil unit (FCU) and an air handling unit (AHU)?

   Visit our HEATING AND AIR CONDITIONING page for other related blog posts on this subject, or go to the INDEX for a complete listing of all our articles. 

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