How to Clean an Air Conditioner?

cleaning air conditioner filterWhen using an air conditioner, it is very important to clean it from time to time. Cleaning an air conditioner gets rid of the accumulated dirt and dust and improves the performance of the unit.

From the aesthetic sense, cleaning also makes the air conditioning unit look spick and span. For cleaning an air conditioner, the essential tools that are required are a tin can, a vacuum cleaner, a long handled brush, an oil can, rags, detergent or other cleaning chemicals and screwdrivers and spanners.

For the window air conditioner unit, the first step is to remove the filter. After removing it, water should be sprinkled on it and using a rag, detergent should be applied on the filter. After the filter becomes soapy, it should be completely submerged in a tray of hot water and kept aside for about 15 minutes. After 15 minutes, it should be rinsed with hot and cold water and hung up to dry.

After this, the front grille has to be removed from the main body. Modern air conditioning units have latches and by simply removing the latches, the front grille can be taken out. After the front grill is removed, the metal cover has to be taken out by unscrewing the screws. The screws can be kept in the tin can. Then the oil plugs of the fan should be taken out to display the oil holes using a pin or screwdrivers. 3 to 4 drops of oil should be applied to the oil holes. Then dirt and dust should be removed from the front fin using the brush.

Once the dirt is gone, the surface should be sprayed with greasers or spray cleaners. After 15 minutes, hot water should be poured slowly to remove all the dirt. Care should be taken so that water doesn’t come in contact with the electrical cables and wires and the refrigerator coils. Any bent fins should now be straightened.

This is a delicate process and pressure should not be applied. For the condenser, the same process of cleaning and watering needs to be done. Since the condenser coils contain high pressure gases, the condenser fins should be handled with extreme care.

Then a rag should be used to wipe the fan blades. The final step is to vacuum the entire unit including the underside of the metal cover. Any excess water should be drained out and the air conditioner should be reassembled when it is completely dry.

For split and ductless air conditioners, cleaning is very easy. The first step is to take off the front cover. It should be cleaned and dried. Then the filters need to be taken out and cleaned in the same manner as described earlier. After this is done, a large plastic bag is needed for progressing further.

The plastic should be fixed to the back side of the unit so that it is attached with the unit. With one hand holding the front side of the bag, so that it catches any dirt and dust coming out of the unit, greasers or spray cleaners should be applied to the coils and the rotor. This has to be done very carefully so that the entire surface of the coils and the rotor are covered with the cleaning agent.

The mouth of the spray should be as close to the coils and the rotor as possible. After this is done and the unit is left for about 10 minutes, the sprayer should be filled with hot water and another round of spraying should be done to wash out dirt and dust.

All this while, the bag should be held carefully so that all the disposable from the unit, like the chemicals and the water fall into it. Water should be sprayed as long as dirty water flows out. Then the unit has to be vacuumed and allowed to dry before reinstalling and using. The condenser should also be cleaned from time to time. It must be dismantled, cleaned with chemicals and vacuumed. Care should be taken for the condenser coils because they contain high pressure gases. After this process, the unit will start cooling better.

How to Clean the Air Conditioner Filter ?

This is a relatively easy thing that can be done by any homeowner and will keep the window air conditioner unit running smoothly and more efficiently.

There are a few options that will get the unit clean. The first thing to do would be to check the filter on the inside of the unit. This is usually a thin mesh filter that easily pulls out from the air conditioner. This will get periodically blocked up with dust and debris, so it should be cleaned frequently. By washing it out under warm water and a mild detergent, it should come completely clean. The filter should be totally dry before getting installed back in the air conditioner.

On the outside of the air conditioner, regular cleaning should be done as well. There are aerosol products that spray a foam cleaning agent over the coils and outside filter and release any dirt and residue. This then either gets washed off or will dissipate on it’s own once finished cleaning. With any such product, it is best to follow the instructions on the container to ensure proper application.

With some routine maintenance, the home air conditioner should work efficiently and effectively for years to come.

{ 2 comments… read them below or add one }

Hat May 4, 2010 at 1:02 pm

I agree

mitsubishiacs July 6, 2011 at 3:25 am

Hi..I am glad to find this post very valuable for me, as it contains lot of information. I always prefer to read the quality content and this thing I found in you post. Thanks for sharing.

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