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Air Conditioner (A/C) Cage for $90 or Less
REI News stories Posted by I. Valdes on Monday June 11, @02:51PM
from the REI News Stories dept.
How to build a cage for your Air Conditioner (A/C) to prevent stealing for $90 or less. An A/C condensor on a Houston, Texas foreclosure I bought had been stolen long before I bought it. The idea of putting a brand-new 13 SEER unit into a neighborhood known for A/C theft was not attractive. I am told that the scrap metal dealers are doing thumbprint, photograph and 3 day waiting period now before paying for copper. The A/C cage will consist of 3 bars north/south and 3 bars east/west. See picture. This should provide more than adequate room to work on the unit and have un-restricted air-flow. The goal is to make the cage so the unit cannot be removed from the cage without destroying it.

Note, do all of this at your own risk and use good safety equipment like welding helmet, gloves, etc. Also, watch out for ants!
Completed A/C CAge
Completed A/C Cage

  • Get dimensions of A/C concrete slab and the height of the A/C unit to be installed.
  • Get rebar pre-bent into u-shaped pieces. Tell Texas Wide Sales Co Address: 5911 Schumacher Ln, Houston, TX 77057 Phone: (713) 783-0091 your dimensions and what you are trying to build. They'll make 12 u-shaped pieces of rebar for $25 at the time of this writing in about 5 minutes.
  • Rent a house-current wire welder from a rental place like Aztec Rentals. Cost including wire and helmet: $65.
  • Lift concrete slab with a shovel or with a buddy or both and slip the lower parts of the U-shaped rebar under the slab with ends sticking up, or rotated over to be out of the way.
  • Install new condensor A/C unit. Turn it off.
  • Rotate U-shaped rebar back into position.
  • Slip box the condensor came in over the A/C unit to protect it from sparks and later paint. Pour water onto box so that it does not catch on fire while welding.
  • Complete cage by welding upper u-shaped bars onto lower bars. You may adjust the height as needed. Home welders use a lot of juice so plug it in to a 20 amp circuit if you can or you may have to make multiple trips to the breaker box to re-set the circuit.
  • Paint with rust-oleum rusty metal primer to keep from rusting.. Use a brush as spraying takes too much paint. Has a good red color that holds up so top coating may not be necessary. I just leave the primer.
  • Cut up box and remove it by sliding out from bars.

    Done. Cost is $90 or less. If you already have a welder or a buddy with one it is only like $30 for the rebar and paint. See attached picture.

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  • The Fine Print: The following comments are owned by whoever posted them.
    ( Reply )

    Over 10 comments listed. Printing out index only.
    Re: Air Conditioner (A/C) Cage for $90 or Less
    by A/C Cages® on Wednesday April 16, @04:13PM
    This would be nice but its proven around here to not work. People just bolt cut their way thru the rebar and it doens't slow them down one bit. We at A/C Cages® in Orlando Florida have been doing this business for years now and are the only licensed and insured company in Florida to do so. We have many fly by nighters who build cages like these and then the customers who shell out alot of money for nothing come to us when their unit it stolen again. By the way, using A/C Cages is a violation of the Registered Trademark of my company.
    [ Reply to this ]
    Re: Air Conditioner (A/C) Cage for $90 or Less
    by A/C Cages® on Wednesday April 16, @04:14PM
    This would be nice but its proven around here to not work. People just bolt cut their way thru the rebar and it doens't slow them down one bit.
    We at A/C Cages® in Orlando Florida have been doing this business for years now and are the only licensed and insured company in Florida to do so. We have many fly by nighters who build cages like these and then the customers who shell out alot of money for nothing come to us when their unit it stolen again.
    By the way, using A/C Cages is a violation of the Registered Trademark of my company.
    [ Reply to this ]
    Air Conditioner Cage for $199 and worth every cent
    by Burton on Wednesday September 09, @08:50PM
    Like most people, we don’t think about Copper Theft and the necessity of having an Air Conditioner Cage until we are the next victim. AC ARMOR has great security units at very good prices that can be shipped to your door. We had a similar setup until we ran into trouble when the unit had to get serviced, so we upgraded our set to the ARMOR I.
    [ Reply to this ]
    Re: Air Conditioner (A/C) Cage for $90 or Less
    by Fun cik off on Wednesday July 28, @02:20AM
    Copyright my butt. The man is telling people how he deters theft and you barge in promoting your trinkets and showing your trademark crap. I'm sure the neighbors non caged a/c is much easier than the rebar he's using. Sell your stuff ok but f.off.
    [ Reply to this ]
    Re: Air Conditioner (A/C) Cage for $90 or Less
    by Larry Stannis on Sunday September 19, @02:25PM
    My first post didn't go through for some reason...?

    After having three (3 !!!) units stolen from rentals we had to try something. I have a friend that is using cages but we've started plastering our units with air conditioner alarm stickers and wiring into the alarms when available (only about half of them). So far, so good.

    I wish the thieves would get prosecuted far harder for this type of theft. The worst part of all is that this is usually just for the scrap copper. They're taking a $1,500 unit and gutting them for maybe $50 worth of copper. It's nuts!

    [ Reply to this ]
    Re: Air Conditioner (A/C) Cage for $90 or Less
    by Andy Johnson on Tuesday November 23, @01:39AM
    A/CAGE COPYRIGHT MY ASS I guess Henry Ford could sue everyone for saying Automobile
    [ Reply to this ]
    Alarm stickers for Air Conditioners
    by Larry Stannis on Wednesday May 04, @02:10PM
    Lin, Amazon sells alarm stickers for air conditioners, generators, etc. You can see them here: http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0042UG76A Let me see if my HTML is still good... haha: Link to A/C alarm stickers
    [ Reply to this ]
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