How to Clean AC Condenser Coils

How to Clean AC Condenser Coils

Multiple Air Conditioner Compressors next to large house or building, with room for copy space
Multiple Air Conditioner Compressors next to large house or building, with room for copy space

Air Pros makes it a point to provide clients with a few AC maintenance techniques to help care for their air conditioning system, allowing their units to last longer. Cleaning your condenser coils is one of the simplest yet most important types of maintenance to do on a regular basis. 

Here are some of the best techniques you should use when cleaning the outdoor unit on residential AC systems, the area that houses the condenser coils.

To clean the condenser coils, you don’t need unusually expensive tools or an understanding of complex techniques. Instead, you can perform some routine AC maintenance, such as cleaning the condenser coils, within a couple of hours or less.

Gather the Necessary Tools

The first thing that you should do is determine which tools you’ll need. For instance, you’ll want to have a butter knife, garden hose, shop vacuum, and a set of screwdrivers. You might also need a set of gloves to help you when handling and spraying off the pieces.

Disconnect the Power

The most important step when doing AC maintenance is to disconnect the power so that you can be confident that there isn’t any risk of electrocution. There will either be a block shutoff or a switch; if you can’t find either, just switch off the source of power at the electrical box.

Vacuum Up Debris

You can use a shop vacuum to clean the fins on the sides of the unit. More than likely, you’ll find grass clippings, leaves, animal fur and feathers, and droppings from trees, including cottonwood seeds and helicopters from maple trees.

Unscrew the Hex Bolts

To take the top off, you’ll need to unscrew the bolts or screws that hold the top in place. When doing this, you might need more than one person to lift the cover off. You also want someone to steady the lid as you’re unscrewing the top because the fan is often connected to the lid, and you don’t want to bend the blades.

Clean Inside

Once you’ve managed to take the top off of the unit, clean inside to remove dirt, leaves, or even an animal that has come to make your outdoor air conditioning unit their home.

Spray from the Inside to the Outside

To get the exterior of the unit clean, take a few minutes to spray the fins down with a hose that has a medium pressure stream of water. Spray from the inside so that the water exits on the outside of the unit rather than on the inside. Additionally, avoid hitting the compressor with the stream of water to avoid needing extensive AC repair.

Straighten the Fins

The fins on the condenser unit help cool it quickly, and if they’re bent, they won’t cool as quickly. Insert the butter knife between any crooked fins to straighten them.

There are plenty of simple techniques that you can use to prevent unnecessary repairs. If you need an AC repair or maintenance service that you can’t do yourself, call Air Pros to find a professional who can extend the life of your air conditioning unit.




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