Best AC Condenser Pads – 2021 Guide

An AC condenser is quite a heavy product. It is used as a heat exchanger in central air conditioning systems to cool and "condense" the incoming refrigerant vapor into liquid before sending it back out again to continue the cooling cycle.

As it does this, the unit is prone to vibration, which may cause it to sink into the ground over time. Not only does this ruin the ground it's on, but it may also damage the internal components of the condenser in the long term.

A condenser pad provides the solid surface the AC needs to stop this from happening.

Comparison of the Best AC Condenser Pads

IMAGEPRODUCT
  • Top texture prevents equipment to shift
  • Very easy to install with HVAC outdoor units
  • Made with a lightweight and durable construction
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  • Very easy to use and install the pad
  • Made with a lightweight and durable construction
  • 36 by 36 unit will hold up to 1500 pounds
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  • Best for the Money
  • Lightweight but durable to be used for standard applications
  • Ribbed for improved self-leveling option
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  • Will easily rests UV light for protection
  • Can be used for a wide variety of applications
  • Made from recycled rubber to preserve the environment
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  • Ribbed for improved self-leveling option
  • Made with a lightweight and durable construction
  • Will easily rests UV light for protection
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How to Choose an AC Condenser Pad

There are several factors you need to consider when choosing the right pad for your unit. Here's an overview of the top three.

Durability

This rests entirely on the material the pad is made from. A concrete pad is ideal for larger condensers but is not necessary if the capacity of your AC is merely enough to cool a small to medium-sized home.

Then there are Styrofoam pads, which are extremely lightweight and may not be ideal for heavier units. The most popular options among homeowners are composite pads.

These are typically made from recycled plastic or rubber and can support a surprisingly large amount of weight. They last just as long as their concrete counterparts. You want to get one with a ribbed surface for even weight distribution, which results in greater stability.

Weather Resistance

Keep in mind that your condenser pad will be outdoors for a very long time. It's going to be exposed to extreme weather conditions all-year-round. Ensure that the pad you get is UV-resistant to prevent it from cracking under sun-exposure and waterproof to keep it in good working condition.

Non-Slip Surface

The pad you get must have a non-slipping surface. The last thing you want is for your (very expensive) condenser to slide off the pad and end up on the ground. Ensure that you check your pad's specifications to confirm if it is slip-resistant.

Review of the Best AC Condenser Pads

We've scoured the market in search of the best AC condenser pads. Here's an in-depth review of the top five we analyzed.

Best Overall:
DiversiTech EL3636-3 E-Lite

DiversiTech EL3636-3 E-Lite Condenser Pad, 36' x 36' x 3', 28# per Pad, Gray

PROS

  • Extremely durable
  • Has a drillable anti-slip surface
  • Stable on a wide range of terrains
  • Highly-versatile and multi-purpose
  • Comfortably supports units that weigh up to 250 pounds

CONS

  • Pale gray color may be off-putting to some users
  • May require some form of drain control underneath

What Recent Buyers Report

Most users like how versatile this condenser pad is. You can use it for your HVAC unit, as well as any accessories and equipment you might need to mount on it.

It can be safely and legally installed in jurisdictions that require three-inch AC condenser pads.  The bracing it comes with is a definite bonus, particularly for individuals who live in a hurricane-prone area.

Why it Stands Out to Us

DiversiTech is no stranger to the HVAC world. It's no surprise that its line of EL3636-3 E-Lite condenser pads is so popular among AC owners. We like the fact that it is made from injection-molded polypropylene, which is one of the most durable, hard-wearing substances known to man.

For all the DIY-ers in the house, you'll love its drillable design, which comes in handy if you need to firmly secure your condenser and prevent it from slipping. The fact that it has generous ribbing underneath allows it to evenly distribute the weight of your unit for even more stability regardless of the terrain underneath.

Bottom Line

Overall, the EL3636-3 E-Lite is one of the most sturdy, high-quality AC condenser pads we've come across. It is easy and convenient to set up and comfortably support units that weigh up to 250 pounds. Although it's not the best-looking pad out there, it will get the job done.

Runner-up:
DiversiTech UC3636-3 Ultralite

Diversitech UC3636-3 Ultralite Concrete Equipment Pad, 36'' x 36'' x 3'', 34# per Pad'

PROS

  • Saves time, money, and labor
  • Excellent vibration absorption
  • Flame, freeze, and thaw-resistant
  • Weather-resistant even in extreme conditions
  • Has a textured surface to prevent equipment from slipping

CONS

  • Not ideal for jurisdictions that require 8-inch pads
  • The pads are not 100% concrete, although they do have concrete-level strength

What Recent Buyers Report

Several buyers were pleasantly surprised by how lightweight yet sturdy this particular product is. It is extremely versatile and has a wide range of uses beyond mounting HVAC-related equipment and accessories.

One user reported that it supported their 350-pound condenser without buckling under the weight. Most people were pretty pleased with their purchases.

Why it Stands Out to Us

When it comes to strength and durability, it doesn't get any better than the DiversiTech UC3636-3 pad. This fiber-reinforced cement pad is surprisingly lightweight and perfect for mounting a wide range of HVAC equipment, including condensers.

We particularly like its textured surface that prevents equipment from slipping and getting damaged. Its vibration-absorbing polystyrene core is a nice touch as well.

Unlike many of the AC pads we've come across, this particular one is freeze-, thaw-, and flame-resistant. You don't have to worry about the heat from the compressor, causing an accidental fire.

Bottom Line

As far as performance, durability, and functionality go, the DiversiTech UC3636-3 is a definite winner in our books. It is quick and easy to install compared to the time, money, and labor it would cost you to construct an actual concrete block. It's certainly worth the purchase.

Best for the Money:
Ecopad Equipment Pad for Ductless Mini Split AC

Equipment Pad for Ductless Mini Split Air Conditioner Heat Pump Outdoor Condenser Units 18x38x3

PROS

  • Durable yet lightweight
  • Drillable for added stability
  • Waterproof and UV-resistant
  • Ideal for use on self-leveling terrain
  • Suitable for a wide range of HVAC applications

CONS

  • May not support units heavier than 205 pounds
  • Since it is hollow underneath, it must be used on a solid concrete surface

What Recent Buyers Report

This heavy-duty condenser pad is a hit among users, given how sturdy and affordable it is. Many buyers particularly liked the easy-to-drill mounting holes it comes with, which are great for securing equipment you wouldn't want to slip off its surface.

Several users, however, noted that its hollow design underneath might not be ideal for extremely heavy condensers mounted on soft ground.

Why it Stands Out to Us

The Ecopad equipment pad delivers outstanding value for the money. It comfortably supports HVAC equipment weighing up to 205 pounds and is quite lightweight.

Unlike other pads we've encountered, this particular product's rugged design has quite a generous amount of ribbing, which allows it to provide optimum self-leveling ground support without having to use inserts with it.

These AC pads are perfect for use on roughly leveled ground. It is waterproof and UV-resistant, so you don't have to worry about it cracking over time.

Bottom Line

This HVAC equipment pad will get the job done. It provides a stable surface for your condenser and is designed to withstand a wide range of extreme weather conditions.

Although it won't provide optimal support for anything that weighs more than 205 pounds, it is ideal for ductless mini-split ACs, heat pumps, and standard outdoor condensers. It's ideal for the budget-conscious consumer.

Editor's Pick:
DiversiTech ACP36363 The Black Pad

Diversitech The Black Pad Plastic Equipment Pad for Pool and Spa Systems, 36' x 36' x 3', Black (ACP36363)

PROS

  • Waterproof and UV-resistant
  • Highly-versatile and multi-purpose
  • Can be used on soil and gravel terrain
  • Has a non-slip textured and drillable surface
  • Offers more stability than regular plastic-only pads

CONS

  • Slightly smaller than the 36" x 36" advertised
  • Not ideal for jurisdictions that require 8-inch pads

What Recent Buyers Report

Buyers were impressed by how sturdy this product is. They also liked the fact that it is extremely versatile and provides the ideal mounting base for HVAC equipment, as well as pool pumps, heaters, filters, and motors.

Several users indicated that they preferred this recycled rubber pad to the ones made from plastic only. Overall, most buyers were quite pleased with their purchase.

Why it Stands Out to Us

The Diversitech Black Pad is a cut above the rest. For one thing, it is made from recycled rubber in a molded polypropylene co-injection process. This makes it a lot heavier and sturdier than your standard plastic condenser pad.

We especially like the subtle texture on its surface. It provides a non-slip base for your equipment, so you don't have to worry about your condenser or any other HVAC accessory shifting and getting damaged in the process. It is also drillable if you want to secure your equipment for added stability.

Bottom Line

This condenser pad is one of the sturdiest we've come across. Its ribbed design provides adequate weight distribution, ensuring the pad remains stable even on soil and gravel terrain.

If you're looking for a pad that's as solid as a concrete surface, this is the closest you'll get to that.

Honorable Mention:
DiversiTech EL3232-2 E-Lite

Diversitech EL3232-2 E-Lite Plastic Condensing Unit Pad, 32x32x2'

PROS

  • Easy size-identification
  • Quick and easy installation
  • Waterproof and UV-resistant
  • Has a textured and drillable surfaced
  • Generous ribbing underneath for even weight distribution and added stability

CONS

  • Not ideal for jurisdictions with zoning laws that require 3-inch pads
  • Needs to be placed on a solid concrete surface to prevent it from sinking into the ground when heavy loads are mounted on it

What Recent Buyers Report

Many users report that this particular pad takes up to 200 pounds of weight. It was easy to install, and most were happy with the fact that it added a bit more height to keep their equipment, especially heat pumps, out of the snow.

They also liked that it is weather-resistant and holds up well even in rough weather conditions.

Why it Stands Out to Us

If you want a basic two-inch pad for mounting your HVAC equipment, you should consider getting the EL3232-2 E-Lite pad. We like the uniform ribbing it has underneath that adds to the pad's overall strength and distributes the load evenly to guarantee maximum support.

It comes with a subtle top texture and a drillable surface for added stability. Another great feature is that each E-Lite pad has its size molded into it in raised letters, making it easy to identify its size.

Bottom Line

If you live in a jurisdiction whose zoning laws don't require that you get a three-inch pad for your condenser or any other HVAC accessory, the E-Lite pad is an excellent choice. Its rugged design and generous ribbing spread the weight of the equipment evenly to provide optimum support.

What is an Air Conditioner Condenser Pad? What is the Purpose Of the Condenser Pad?

AC condensers, particularly those for central air conditioning systems, don't come cheap. As this piece of equipment starts to sink into the ground, it becomes lopsided, which puts a considerable strain on the tubes and lines that run underneath it.

These eventually get ruined. Repairing and replacing the damaged components can rack up quite a monumental bill.

A condenser pad provides the stability and support required to contain the weight of the condenser over time. It absorbs the vibrations from the unit against the ground it rests on to prevent damage that could drastically reduce its lifespan.

What Size Air Conditioner Condenser Pad Do I Need?

Before installing a condenser pad for your AC unit, you first need to check the zoning codes in your city for the minimum required size you need to get. In some places, you need to get a three-inch pad, at the very minimum, regardless of the size of the condenser you have.

Remember that some rules and regulations also define where your condenser pad and unit can be placed in your yard. Familiarize yourself with what your area regulations stipulate to ensure you're not breaking any rules.

How Often Should I Buy a New AC Condenser Pad?

Ideally, most equipment pads are built to withstand extreme weather conditions. Nonetheless, if you don't invest in one that's made from durable and heavy-duty material, it will likely crack after a while, in which case, you'll need to get a replacement. Failure to do this promptly means exposing your condenser to potential damage.

It's also a good idea to buy a new pad if your current one is sinking into the ground or virtually non-existent. The lifespan for most pads is roughly 10 years, at which point you'll need to replace them. Have a qualified AC maintenance professional inspect it every five years to check that it is still in good working condition.

How to Clean Air Conditioner Condenser Pad

AC equipment pads are generally low-maintenance given the fact that they are built for the outdoors. Cleaning them is, therefore, quite straightforward. Here's what you need to do.

  1. Start by sweeping the pad's exposed surfaces to remove the dust, dirt, and leaves that may have fallen on it.

  2. Next, if it has built-up dirt or algae, mix half a cup of oxygenated bleach with two gallons of warm water

  3. Use a soft-bristled brush to scrub the surface until all traces of dirt and algae are gone

  4. If there are stubborn stains, spray two cups of white vinegar on the surface of the condenser pad and then sprinkle half a cup of baking soda

  5. Let the solution sit for 15 minutes and then scrub it off with a soft-bristled brush

  6. Rinse the surface with clean, fresh water and leave it to dry

To keep your condenser pad in tip-top condition, make a point of cleaning it at least once a week to prevent dirt and algae from building up.

Conclusion

Condenser pads are essential to the overall lifespan of your AC. Choosing the best one will ensure that your condenser remains safe and functional for many years to come.

Any of the products we've reviewed in this guide would be an excellent choice for your AC unit. They are lightweight, easy-to-install, weatherproof, and, more importantly, durable.

People Also Ask

We've put together the answers to some of the most frequently asked questions by air conditioner owners.

How Much is an Air Conditioner Condenser Pad?

The cost depends on the kind of pad you get. Constructing a prefab concrete pad, for instance, requires you to build a base and frame, add reinforcements, and pour concrete. It takes a considerable amount of time, money, and effort.

If, on the other hand, you bought one made from plastic, rubber, or recycled materials, it'll cost you anywhere between $43 and $110.

How Long Do AC Condenser Pads Last?

In theory, they should last for the entire life of your AC unit, so we're talking 15-20 years. In reality, however, you should replace it once it hits the 10-year mark if it has any signs of sinking, wear, or tear.

Have a qualified AC maintenance professional inspect it every five years to ensure it is still in good working condition.

How Do You Level an AC Condenser Pad?

If your AC pad is sinking and your unit appears lopsided, this may damage the condenser's electrical lines and copper coolant tubes. To fix it, work a shovel or longboard under the sinking end of the pad, and place a small rock under it to act as a pivot.

Then, lift it slowly without cracking it and pack sand under it. Use a level tool to check that the surface is horizontal. If it is not, keep packing more sand until you get it straight.