How to Clean Your Air Conditioner

How to clean your air conditioner

Restore efficiency and cut energy bills in 10 minutes!

The outside unit of your central air conditioning system is basically a fan surrounded by a wall of tubing and tiny fins. If those fins are plugged with dirt and debris, airflow through them is reduced. In the short term, that means lower efficiency and expensive energy wasted. In the long term, it leads to repairs or replacement. But keeping those fins open to airflow is faster and easier than washing your car.
Turn off the power

Open the disconnect box and pull out the disconnect block. Set the block aside and close the box. Don’t forget to push the block back into place when you’re done cleaning.

Clean the unit

  • Washing air-blocking debris off of the fins is as easy as using a garden hose. Here are a few tips for best results:
  • If the fins are caked with fuzz from dandelions or cottonwood trees, vacuum before you rinse with water.
  • Rinse with moderate pressure. The fins are made from flimsy metal, which will bend under strong pressure.
  • As you spray, peer down into the unit from above. You should see water streaming through the fins. If not, the fins are blocked and need more rinsing.
  • Rinse off all the fins, but pay special attention to the fins just under the lid of the unit. Aim the water upward to drive out debris buildup there.

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