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Before You Store That Air Conditioner

Carrying it to the basement isn’t just challenging, it’s dangerous, partly because it can block your view of the steps. Here, ways to save your back—and maybe a trip to the ER

PUT IT ON WHEELS Invest in a hand truck with large pneumatic tires that won’t scratch the bullnose on the treads on the way down. Place the AC on the truck with the grille facing out to prevent it from cracking, and hold it in place tightly with rope or ratcheting straps as you walk it down.

<p>(Railing not shown for clarity.)</p>

(Railing not shown for clarity.)

Illustration by Brown Bird Design

OR BUILD A SLED Grab a piece of inch-thick plywood that’s just wider than the AC unit and about 40 inches long. Wrap the bottom and the front and back edges with carpet scrap, clamped in place with 2x4 cleats and screws. Thread a ratcheting strap between the plywood and carpet, then place the AC with the metal cover resting against the front cleat, and tighten the strap. Center a 3⁄8-inch-diameter eyebolt in the rear cleat and knot a nylon rope around it. Wrap the rope around your back, and with your dominant hand feed the line to your other hand, guiding the sled down the stairs, as shown.