How to Clean Your Air Conditioner Coils

Keeping your home in Boise, ID, and the surrounding Treasure Valley areas cool and comfortable year-round is important in creating a relaxing environment for you and your family. Like with most other appliances within your home, however, your air conditioning unit will require maintenance to function properly and smoothly. Cleaning your air conditioner coils is a part of maintaining a smoothly functioning and reliable AC system for your home.

Importance of AC Coils

AC coils play an important role when it comes to the overall operation of your home’s AC system. Responsible for absorbing heat and humidity from within your home, the coils then redistribute cool air into your HVAC system that is used to meet your cooling needs.

Without these coils working properly, your home can become warm, muggy, and weighed down by the humidity. So cleaning your air conditioner coils is an extremely important part of maintaining your AC unit, helping it function as it’s intended to so that it can deliver the cool crisp air you rely on.

Why Do AC Coils Need to Be Cleaned?

When AC coils become dirty and dust-covered, they struggle to handle the incoming heat and humidity from within your home. This causes your AC unit to struggle in blowing cool air back into your home the way that it should.

Whether you’re in the Boise, ID, and Treasure Valley areas or not, cleaning your AC coils can be completed with some basic knowledge and guidance from the HVAC professionals at TSS Home Comfort.

Steps to Cleaning Your Air Conditioner Coils:

  1. Shut Off Your AC Unit & Access The Coils

Before beginning any work on your air conditioner, you need to be sure that the power is completely shut off. Once this is done, locate the access panel on your unit and locate the coils within.

Coils are thin sheets of metal that are woven together tightly, and can oftentimes be located fairly easily. Once you’ve located the coil, carefully remove it from the inside of the unit before you begin cleaning to avoid disturbing other components.

  1. Clean The Light Build-Ups

With compressed, or canned air, you should be able to blow off and remove excess dust and light debris from your AC’s coil using this method. Make sure that you aren’t blowing the excess dust and debris back into your AC unit, and always make it a habit of wearing the proper protective equipment such as eye protection, gloves, and a dust mask.

  1. Scrub Stubborn Areas With A Brush

Once you’ve removed all of the light debris and dust from your coil, you’ll want to start tackling the more stubborn and solid build-ups. Things such as grime and grease won’t get removed using air alone, and this is where your brush comes into play.

Avoid pressing too hard when brushing your coil to avoid bending things such as the fins, and to avoid other unwanted damage. Don’t use any cleaning chemicals while brushing just yet, for now, just brush off as much grime and grease as you can with a dry brush.

  1. Use A Commercial Cleaner or Homemade Solution

Now that you’ve removed as much as you can without cleaning the solution, it’s time to bring out the big guns. Use a commercial cleaner such as certain acids for really stubborn grime, or a homemade solution for cleaning air conditioner coils such as vinegar or hot steam.

If you have a window AC, clean the window unit with simple green or similar cleaning product. Cleaning your air conditioner coils inside you’ll want to avoid using heavier commercial grade cleaners where possible.

Apply your chosen solution to the coil and let it sit and soak for a few minutes, then using your brush continue to remove the more stubborn grime, dust, and debris build-ups. Repeat the process a few times until you’re satisfied with how clean your coil has become.   

  1. Re-Install The Coils

Once you’re satisfied that your coil is clean, re-install it back into your AC unit, and ensure that everything is put back together the same way you took it out. This is just “reversing” step 1, but be sure that everything is snug and complete before turning your unit back on.

How Often Should You Clean Your AC Coils?

Cleaning your air conditioner coils is an important part of maintaining your unit, and it’s typically recommended that you clean the coils once per year to ensure that they’re up to the task of keeping you cool and comfortable within your home.