Every homeowner should make the proper maintenance of their AC unit a priority. Regular AC maintenance prevents small problems from developing into major concerns. A well-maintained system runs more efficiently and uses less power while being more reliable and less susceptible to breakdowns. Regular maintenance saves you money on maintenance down the line.
Over time, different parts of an AC unit collect dirt, dust, dander, and debris. Unclean AC parts can impact your unit’s efficiency and indoor air quality. To prevent performance problems and to maintain indoor air quality, make cleaning a part of routine maintenance.
Cleaning the different parts of your AC can be a time-consuming task. Be prepared to set aside about half your day. Be patient as cleaning will require precise movements. You may need specific tools for the job. If you are pressed for time, consider hiring an expert for air conditioning service in Walnut Creek like Connolly Heating & Air Conditioning.
Clean the Indoor Unit
Follow these steps to clean your AC’s interior unit.
Switch Off the Power to Your System
Safety comes first. Before cleaning different parts, switch off the power at your breaker box. This will mean you won’t have any lights. To avoid inconvenience, perform the task in the daytime. If your indoor unit is in the attic or some other dark place, make sure you have adequate lighting.
Open the Unit
Carefully unfasten screws or bolts holding the door in place. Depending on the type of unit, you may have to remove foil duct and tape.
Clean the Evaporator Coil
Even a fine layer of dust on your evaporator coil can negatively impact the efficiency of your AC. Use a soft brush to remove accumulated dirt from your evaporator coil. The dust on your coil may include pollen, dander and other allergens. If you have any allergies, remember to wear a mask before starting to clean your evaporator coil.
Use a no-rinse coil cleaner to clean your evaporator coil. Spray the cleaner evenly. Make sure it reaches the areas you can’t easily see or reach. After you spray the cleaning solution on the coil, it will foam up and drip into the unit’s drain pan, carrying away dirt and dust.
Clean the Drain Line
The next step involves cleaning your AC’s drain line. Mix equal parts bleach and water andpour the mixture down your drain. If you want a long-term solution, use drain pan tablets that will clean your drain pan of slime and sludge and keep the condensate drain pan flowing freely.
Clean Your AC Drain If It Is Plugged
If your drain is sluggish even after you pour the cleaning solution down it, check to see if it is plugged. Without regular cleaning and maintenance, your drain can become a breeding ground for mold and algae.
Your drain may either end outside or lead to a utility sink in the basement. Follow your drain and carry a wet vacuum with you. Once you have reached the end of your drain, hold the hose to the end of the drain tube. To prevent air leakage, hold a towel around the gap. Turn on your vacuum cleaner. Let it run for 2-3 minutes to get rid of any build-up.
Close the Access Panel
Reattach your AC’s access panel. Use HVAC metal foil tape to seal the top and bottom of the access panel. Be careful to not cover the manufacturer’s label!
During cleaning, you may encounter challenges you cannot handle on your own. For example, if you have an A-frame evaporator coil and haven’t cleaned them in a while, consider reaching out to air conditioning technician in Walnut Creek, CA.
Clean Your AC’s Outside Unit
Your AC’s exterior unit is constantly exposed to the elements. It gets dirty faster than the internal unit and may require more regular cleaning. Follow these steps to clean your AC’s exterior unit.
Shut Off the Power to Your System
After you disconnect your AC, remove the sheet metal screws on top of the unit to lift the fan unit and grille.
Get Rid of Debris
Remove debris at the bottom of your unit. This might be a time-consuming task, especially if your exterior unit doesn’t have guards in place to prevent leaves, seeds, and tiny twigs from entering the unit.
Clean the Coils and Fins
You can use a coil cleaning solution to clean your AC’s condenser coil. Pour the solution into your pump sprayer and spray it on the coil. Wait for a few minutes for the solution to foam up and then wash it off with a hose.
Straighten the Fins
Bent fins can impact airflow. Use a fin comb to straighten bent fins.
Clean Around the Exterior Unit and Level It
Do not let debris and dirt accumulate around the exterior unit. Remember to keep vegetation around your unit trimmed back.
Clean Your Filters
Clogged filters can cause a number of problems, ranging from reduced airflow to overheating. To prevent these problems, inspect and clean your filters every two weeks. Follow these guidelines for cleaning AC filters.
➢ Vacuum your filters. To prevent damage, use an attachment without a brush
➢ Fill up your bathtub with water. Add a little bit of detergent. Submerge your AC filters in your bathtub. Let the soapy solution sit on your filters for 10-15 minutes
➢ Mix one part vinegar to one part water. Pour the solution in a spray bottle. Spray the solution on both sides of your filters
➢ Wait for your filters to dry out before re-installing them
Connolly Heating and Air Conditioning is a top-rated HVAC contractor in Walnut Creek, CA. If your AC has stopped working? Give us a call and leave the rest to our team. We go the extra mile to make sure your AC is up and running in the shortest possible time. Call us at (925) 288-1408 today!