Bad Dog!

Every year for the past four years I would do a spring time clean and check on my friend’s air conditioning unit. The clean and check usually took about an hour to do. We would clean his unit and then cook a few burgers on the grill and drink a few beers. Well for the past couple of years I told him the corrosion on his coil was getting worse and that it looked like a dog was urinating on the coil of his air-conditioner. I warned him he needed do something to keep it from ruining his A/C. For some reason he didn’t believe me until his unit sprung a leak early last summer. He waited too long to react. It was way too late.

The Effects of Urine on You’re A/C

The chemicals in the urine start to eat away at the aluminum and cooper coil very quickly. The aluminum will start to turn white or gray and then it will just crumble away. The fins start to crumble and fall off in big patches. All of the tubing will start turning green where ever it’s exposed to these chemicals. Under the right conditions in just one cooling season an air-conditioning condensing unit can be destroyed.

My Friends Misfortune

I don’t know how he found out the golden retriever from two doors down was the culprit, but he did. He took a few pictures of the dog urinating on his AC and confronted the dogs’ owner. Needless to say the neighbor didn’t reimburse him for a new air-conditioner, and he avoids my friend as much as possible.

From what my friend said, he thinks that dog was making a bee line to his unit every time his master let him out. I’m not sure how many times a dog goes every day, but I think every time it did go, it was on my friend’s air conditioner. That unit was trashed in just a few years.

Repair or Replace?

The cost of repairing this twenty year old air-conditioner would probably have been close to the price of a new one. The coil is a major component and, if the parts would have been available it would have been expensive. He ended up deciding to replace the unit instead of repairing his old one. His new cooling system is a lot more efficient than his old one was, and a lot quieter. Both he and his wife are really happy with his new unit so far, but they seem to be worried that the neighbors’ dog might return and ruin this one too.

My suggestion to him or anyone that might have this type of a problem is to put a fence around it to protect it from the neighbors’ dog.  The fence only has to be about 18” high, and just far enough away from the unit that the dog can’t hit it. This would effectively protect his new system and wouldn’t cost much to complete. With the high cost of replacing his air conditioner fresh in his mind, I can only hope that he takes this advice.


  1. Natural Cure says:

    Thanks to this post, I learned the tip I desperatly needed to cure my problem. I will keep you informed of my findings. well organized website by the way.

    • Raymond S- HVAC Specialist says:

      I hope it’s your dog that’s doing it. Your dog can be taught not to mark the AC. It’s harder to control the neighbors’ dog.

  2. Elaina Toler says:

    that is how the cookie crumbles