Tips for Cleaning Your AC System

September 20, 2019

With summer ending in Circleville, now is an ideal time to get a head start on air conditioner maintenance.

If you haven’t cleaned it lately, it could be clogged with dirt and debris from your yard. This accumulation can decrease your unit’s efficiency and cause it to malfunction. Or make it wear out sooner.

We advise having your air conditioning system professionally serviced annually. Why? Clean equipment can be more energy efficient, which could save you money on electric costs.

Consistent AC maintenance also helps our technicians spot and take care of minor issues before they become expensive problems.

Related: How to Keep Your Air Conditioner from Failing

Some of the work we perform involves:

  • Taking a look at the blower, motor, drain line and coils
  • Watching pressure and temperature
  • Reviewing lines, refrigerant totals and connections

You can still have maintenance done this fall—and we can get your furnace ready for heating season too.

Schedule maintenance now


There’s also some work you can do alone between professional tune-ups. You only need about an hour to get the grime off your outdoor condenser unit, as well as several components on your indoor HVAC system.

Related: How Often Should You Expect to Get Air Conditioning Service Done?

How to Clean Your Outside AC Unit

Pick a mild day to scrub your air conditioner. At least 60 degrees Fahrenheit (20 degrees Celsius) is best. That way, you can run your system once you’ve cleaned it.

You’ll only need a few things:

  • Wet-dry vacuum and hose with a soft brush attachment
  • Screwdriver
  • Butter knife
  • Damp rag
  • Small, round paintbrush
  • Replacement furnace filter (if necessary)

Related: How AC Repair and Maintenance Can Actually Save You Money

5 Steps to Clean the Outside Unit

1. Turn Off the Power

Stop the electricity to your air conditioner at the breaker box.

2. Clean the Outside

Take out waste from the equipment. This includes branches, bushes, weeds and grass.

Then use the vacuum to cautiously clean the metallic fins. These components are also called as condenser coils and transfer heat away from your system.

You need to be cautious with these fine coils. Bent or crinkled fins can influence efficiency.

3. Fix Bent Fins

Use a butter knife to adjust misshapen fins. You can also get a fin comb from an appliance parts retailer. A pro from Stephen Hurst Pack Heating and Cooling, Inc should handle large amounts of damage.

4. Clean the Inside

After taking out the fan, fish out leaves and other yard litter. Then wipe the inside of the unit with a wet sponge.

The only coil cleaner you should use is water. Use gentle pressure from a hose nozzle to wash the fins, showering water from the inside out. Replace the fan once you’re done.

5. Test Your Air Conditioner

You can now restore power and turn your air conditioner back on. If it’s not running like it should, reach out to us a call at 740-474-5940.

Related: Air Conditioner Service: Pay a Little Now, Save Later

3 Steps to Clean the Indoor Unit

1. Turn Off the Power

Cut the electricity to your furnace at the breaker box.

2. Check Your Filter

Furnace filters must be exchanged every several months, depending on the type you use.

Can’t remember when you last checked yours? Remove it and tilt it toward the light. If you can’t see light through it, get a new one.

3. Clean the Inside

Remove the blower door and vacuum up dust.

Then take a look at your air conditioner’s drain line—it’s a supple plastic tube. If it’s moldy, you can sanitize it by draining water-down bleach through the tube to sanitize the line. Or you can buy a new tube.

Wash the drain port using a small, round paintbrush. Connect the drain tube and turn the power back on.

Related: How to Keep Your Air Conditioner Running Well Through Fall

Never Forget a Tune-Up Again

Annual air conditioner maintenance from Stephen Hurst Pack Heating and Cooling, Inc can make your unit more efficient and help it last longer. We also offer convenient service agreements, so you won’t forget to schedule your regular maintenance!