Download a pdf which is a quick reference guide with diagrams to this article about hiding an ac unit:Reference Guide for Fence There are some concerns about hiding them, so you should be aware of them to avoid problems.
We are always trying to hide the ac. Some people call them condensers, while some call them compressors, or ac. These units contain both pieces of equipment, so that is why both terms are used to refer to this unit. I will call it a compressor for this post. We need it to cool our homes, but they do not always fit into our landscaping. So how can we hide an a c unit, while ensuring that they function well?
Here are some things to consider to avoid performance issues. The compressor should be level and off of the ground to protect it from standing water after a rain. Compressors are set on a concrete slab to have them at least three inches off of the ground, but these slabs can sink, or the ground could be built up around them. You could purchase special stands that would lift and level a compressor at any home improvement center. The next consideration is that you will want a good air circulation around the unit. There should be at least a foot of clear space in each direction around the compressor to accomplish this air flow. Lastly, you need to have space around the ac compressor for someone to work on it. A three foot space is a good distance.
What are your options in hiding the ac? The simplest is painting it to match the house color or some theme in your garden. I painted mine black, since that color allows it to fade into the background. I painted my breaker box a red that I used for some objects around the exterior of the house. When painting a compressor, you do not want to paint the fins, just the metal frame parts. The fins help taking the heat from your house to the outside. Another method is to build a small fence like structure around it. Make this out of a trellis material so air can easily pass through it. I would have the posts for this fence in a fixed position, but make the body portion removable, so the compressor can be worked on. The last simple method is planting around the compressor. This works out well as long as the space around the compressor is kept clear, and a path to the compressor is made. You will probably have to prune every so often to keep the plants clear of the unit.
As long as you follow the considerations, you will not have any problems with home inspectors. Your solutions could combine a couple of the above mentioned means, or you may find other creative ways to pull a person’s line of sight away from the compressor.I think that a simple fence made from a lattice sheet meant for fencing or a bamboo fence can be a good do it yourself project, but hedge bushes do work well as plantings, as do ornamental grasses.