Asked on Jul 07, 2016

Disguising an AC/heater unit

Wanda Braymer
by Wanda Braymer
We added an addition to our house and the white AC/heater unit has no place to go besides in front of the house. We are trying to disguise it with a homemade fence like structure, add white stones underneath, and hope to decorate it during the holidays and with a clematis vine on the other side where it doesn't matter as much if it doesn't get the circulation. Boy, I'll accept any ideas the hometalk creatives might have.
q disguise ac heater unit, hvac, outdoor living
  10 answers
  • William William on Jul 07, 2016
    You could put up plastic lattice panels where the existing fence is. Just make sure you don't block the air flow from the ac. Its recommended any structures be at least three feet from the unit.

  • Valerie Valerie on Jul 07, 2016
    I like William's idea of plastic lattice panels. Another suggestion would be to put plant containers that look like window boxes on top of the pavers, outside the existing fence. You could then plant some pretty flowers in them and trail them up the existing fence.

    • Wanda Braymer Wanda Braymer on Jul 07, 2016
      Thank You Valerie, I can picture that too, I've started a clematis on the other side. Keep those ideas coming!!!

  • MaryAnn B MaryAnn B on Jul 07, 2016
    You can make a screen using old shutters. You can match the shutters you have on your house now. Looks like you have lots of clearance for air circulation.

  • Janet Pizaro Janet Pizaro on Jul 07, 2016
    I agree with the white lattice panels for disguising the a/c unit. And I would make container plantings in various heights to more or less not draw attention the the lattice but to the plants.

  • Melanie Juhler Nuffer Melanie Juhler Nuffer on Jul 07, 2016
    I would use a long rectangular planter and put in ornamental grasses

  • Johnchip Johnchip on Jul 08, 2016
    Paint it to match house color. Put a nice 'sculptural piece' of old metal railing or fencing and let it be. You might consider putting some nice large stones/rocks that match the stone wall randomly in the space. Maybe add a decorative grass that will 'move' with the breeze it creates.

    • See 1 previous
    • Johnchip Johnchip on Jul 08, 2016
      While you are at it, I personally would also paint the utility box and all cables, cords, etc. and cable run downspout so they blend into the house, leaving the actual water spout white to frame the corner of the house.

  • Joan Williams Joan Williams on Jul 08, 2016
    I've hidden two units over the years. The first with plastic lattice. The second unit I used old beaten up shutters. Some of the slats were missing, so I took out some additional slats, painted the shutters & planted a climbing vine.

    • Wanda Braymer Wanda Braymer on Jul 08, 2016
      You're the second one to suggest shutters. It sounds clever but I can't picture it. Would you mind posting a picture if you can?

  • Lynn Palmatier Lynn Palmatier on Jul 08, 2016
    You could purchase the replacement slats from your local home improvement store and cut to the height that will hide the unit. I personally like having the alternating slat fence so the air flow is maintained. Some kind of living fence would also be nice. Just remember that clematis will go dormant and loose it leaves during the winter. They also like to have their roots kept cool (rocks or other plants) Some tall flowers or grasses would hide the fence during the summer and having the fence (picket or slat) would be a great place to place a wreath and likes at Christmas.

  • Apache Apache on Jul 09, 2016
    You can eliminate the lattice completely. I would paint all the outside mechanical items to match the house paint as Johnchip suggested. Then I would buy plastic planters (they're cheaper) in various heights and spray paint them in bright colors. Next plant them with your favorite flowers and grasses. Ornamental cabbage is beautiful for filling the base below the flowers. This will hide the ac without a lot of expense or work. Change the flowers seasonally. Once I even used fake flowers, they weather well for a year. I get mine from the dollar store and get many compliments. This option is good for black thumb or very busy people because there's no maintenance.

  • Michelle Michelle on Aug 28, 2016
    Create a repurpose white picket fence, leave plain white, decorate it, attach plants in little pots, hang decor, use mirror, etc. all found on this site!