DIY Heat Pump Wood Privacy Cover Made Cheap Instructional Tutorial [Heat Pump Wood Privacy Cover]
Good DIY Day Everyone! The heat pump needed some dressing up so we figured we'd make a cedar slat faced privacy cover for it to hide it while still allowing it to breathe and vent properly. Using cedar slats and two by fours for the corner posts we were able to keep the cost on this fun little project to a minimum.
We weren't totally sure how appealing the look would actually be until we got it done. We started out by taking some measurements and sketching out a little plan. The plan was to use 2X4's for the corner posts and then nail cedar fence slats to the frame but not before sanding both sides of them smooth. They come rough cut from the store so we were after more of a polished look so it was important to smooth down the roughness and eventually stain them with polyurethane.
We started with two long two by fours and cut them in half for the four corner posts. This will give us 4 equal lengths from which to start. These were once I had laying around from past projects. They happened to be made out of pine which is fine but I would have used cedar if those happened to be the ones I had laying around.
Here's the two long boards chopped in half with the chop saw. This can be done by hand as well with a hand saw. Then it was time for a trip to the hardware store to pick up some cedar slats.
It pays off a little to call around (if you have hardware store options) to see who is selling these at the best price. It seems to vary quite a bit and a few phone calls can save you some money on these. If you have a cedar supply store near you, it may help to give them a call and see what their prices are as well.
Now it was time to stand up our corner pieces. We used some scrap wood just to hold it in place. It's tacked together with some brad nails but not too much as these will need to be removed.
Then we cut 45 degree corners into the proper corners of the slats after cutting them to length. You could choose to go with squared off corners rather than the 45's but this is the look we were going for. If you decide to go with the square corners, this is a lot quicker than trying to piece these in to make nice corners. These corners do look better if you can take the time to get them fit up right.
I used some dewalt clamps to hold the slats in place in preparation for nailing. I used the thickness of one cedar slat to use as a spacer/template to keep the gaps in between boards even. Once in place I nailed them with a brad nailer. We started installing these from bottom to top.
Using cut-offs from the cedar slats we were able to keep the gaps in between boards uniform. These gaps allow for air movement around the heat pump. Each individual cedar slat was sanded before being nailed up to the frame.
After nailing up all of the slats we determined that the structure was a little too high. This was an easy fix and decided to shop a small length from the top.
After removing about 6" form the top it now was in need of some trim so we ripped some cedar slats to a thinner width.
After ripping a boards to a thinner width it was time to cut some 45 degree corners into each of them for installation. We also made sure to sand these before installation.
Here's a look of the structure with the tip trim installed. We overlapped the vertical plane of the structure about 1/2" on each side before nailing down.
Now we installed a board across the back for stability purposes.
Once complete it was time to coat it with some one-coat polyurethane. This was where sanding all the boards came in handy.
Here's the finished product. This project can easily be done in one day if you set out to do it and have all the materials ready. Thanks for checking this out and hope it helps. Below is the full start to finish video of the whole project.