Asked on Mar 03, 2020

How can I level an A/C pad?

Jim Ginas
by Jim Ginas

How difficult is it to level an A/C Pad (less than 3' x 3')? I noticed this week it is not level. (Was, but now tilted ? approx 1+ inch lower at Right Front Corner)** Assume it needs to be leveled to protect 1. A/C operation 2. possible damage to pipes/electric to it? NOTE PAD TILTED to Right_1+Inch: How to FIX that?

  14 answers
  • Scarlet Paolicchi Scarlet Paolicchi on Mar 03, 2020

    That happened to my mom's too! She contacted the contractor since it was a new house. This link should help https://www.familyhandyman.com/heating-cooling/air-conditioner-repair/fix-a-sinking-air-conditioner-pad/

  • William William on Mar 03, 2020

    Lay a board next to the pad. Use crowbar, shovel, another board under the pad edge laying on board next to the pad. Raise the pad and stick a brick, stone, board under it when it's level. Pack sand, gravel, etc. under the pad. Me and my crew always put down a bed of gravel over soil then laid the pad on top. When the plastic pads came out they were easier because they had a lip all around.

  • Chloe Crabtree Chloe Crabtree on Mar 03, 2020

    Try working a long board under one end of the concrete air conditioning pad, lifting it up, then packing sand under it. Do the same on the other end of the concrete air conditioning pad, making the pad as level as possible.

    • See 1 previous
    • Engineering is fine, execution of plans is the issue. The soil may not have been compacted properly before pouring the pad, especially if this is a new housing development. You have fantastic suggestions here, I am sure you will be able to remedy easily enough. If it sinks again, then you may have other issues to deal with. Good luck! 🌞

  • Robyn Garner Robyn Garner on Mar 03, 2020

    I want to add - please turn off the power to the HVAC unit prior to starting work!

    and....‘’lift with your legs, not your arms’’ you could end up on your back for a week or two.


    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZnrL-RsQVX4

  • Kathy Gunter Law Kathy Gunter Law on Mar 03, 2020

    It has most likely settled. If the unit wasn't installed very long ago, I would contact the HVAC contractor. I would probably do it any way, just to be on the safe side. You have high voltage, heavy unit with gases. It would be a shame to injure yourself or the unit.

  • There's surely a reason why the concrete pad has settled and that needs to be resolved in order for the whole thing to sit level again. I'd be real hesitant to do this myself as there's a lot to mess up and a lot of electricity going on there. A pro can help you resolve this very easily.

  • Johnavallance82 Johnavallance82 on Mar 04, 2020

    Hello there,

    If you can lever it up on the low side with a shovel etc. you may be able to wedge something under that side to help settle it ! Get someone to help you, if only to hold the shovel in place whilst you put in the wedge!! I have a similar problem with a 3 level fountain I am going to have to address! Best wishes.

  • Janice Janice on Mar 07, 2020

    Hi Jim, you have some really good suggestions already so I won't chime in; however, I must say it was very observant of you to noticethat the pad had settled that much!

  • Tofflow Tofflow on Mar 14, 2024

    Don't worry, leveling an A/C pad is totally doable, even if it's shifted like yours. Start by turning off the power to the unit and removing any debris around the pad. Then, using a level, check the surface and identify where it's off.

  • HadleyHuynh HadleyHuynh on Mar 14, 2024

    You can use shims or even concrete mix to adjust the pad's height and ensure it's perfectly level. It's crucial for proper A/C operation and to avoid any potential damage to the unit or its components.While you're at it, it's worth considering the importance of regular HVAC maintenance. A well-maintained system not only operates more efficiently but also helps prevent issues like this from cropping up. I recently found some useful insights on HVAC maintenance at https://www.buckscountyfuel.com/get-price, which might come in handy.Take your time with the leveling process, and don't hesitate to seek professional help if needed. With a little effort, you'll have your A/C pad back in shape in no time.

  • Redcatcec Redcatcec on Mar 14, 2024

    The soil has probably settled due to the water table and the composition of the soil under it. I would contract the installer to come back and level it, if you did the work yourself it might void any warranty.

  • Janice Janice on Mar 15, 2024

    William's advice is great and will do the trick of leveling the pad for you.

  • Betsy Betsy on Mar 16, 2024

    Hi Jim: First thing, turn the power off to the ac unit. It may seem contrary, but dig out around the low side and then shove some dirt underneath it as far in as you can. Or, you can buy a pad at Home Depot https://www.homedepot.com/p/Emsco-24-in-x-24-in-High-Density-Plastic-Resin-Extra-Large-Paver-Pad-2192-1/100671283, but the ground has to be leveled first, as mentioned above. You may be able to lift the ac high enough to shove the pad under the unit, but I wouldn't go too high. You may elicit the help of another person for this.