Are the kids talking about the summer holidays more and more? Ready for a trip to the beachside or your cabin by the lake? Before you get too far into holiday plans, is your air conditioner ready?
When the temperature soars to 90°F – and past 100 °F – you want to know your AC unit is ready to go. And you can do that thanks to our ultimate guide.
Tidy Around the Outdoor Unit
Before you clean the actual AC unit parts, tidy around and inside the external unit. This means sweeping or raking up surrounding leaves and debris, and removing cobwebs. Clear space around the outdoor unit means it can draw in air without obstruction.
The next step will be clearing out any debris or leaves inside the condenser unit. But before you do this, disconnect the power supply at your electrical switchboard or by removing the breaker located near the outdoor air conditioner unit.
With the power cut you can safely remove the top of your condenser unit (or a side panel) and clean it up by hand and with a vacuum.
Now, if your air conditioner is located in a hard to reach place like the roof, feel free to call a location technician. They have the appropriate safety equipment to access difficult spots.
Wash the Condenser Fins
Air conditioners work by drawing in external air through aluminium condenser fins and a heat exchanger. The warm air is cooled and directed through vents in your home.
However, the fins are quite delicate. They will bend and collect dust which impacts performance.
You can best see the debris build up by shining a flashlight through the fins. If the light is barely visible than you know it’s time to work and clean AC compressor coils and condenser coils.
Coil cleaner foaming spray will be your best friend here. All you have to do is spray the inside of the fins, allowing the foam to work its way from the inside out. There’s a good chance you’ll have to use the whole can, so don’t be shy while washing the air conditioner.
Let the foam soak in for 10 minutes before delicately rinsing it off with a hose, again from the inside. The cleanser will flush through, removing all debris and mold on AC coils.
Just remember to work with a light touch and a light spray as a high pressure hose will damage the fins. And if for you are worried about any condenser fin damage, contact your local AC technician to organise essential aircon repairs and service.
Finally, rinse the outside of the unit and put all the pieces back together!
Clean the AC Filters
Once everything is cleaned up outside, make your way indoors! If you have a split system with wall mounted AC units, it’s time to clean their filters.
The best way to clean air conditioner filters like these is to simply remove the front of the unit and slide out the filter. It’s then a quick process of vacuuming any loose dust, dirt or grime in the filter and around the air conditioner.
Follow this up by rinsing the filter in warm water to dissolve any stubborn grime, and allow it to dry before placing it back in the aircon.
As a finishing touch, wipe down the split system so everything is sparkling clean!
Clean the Air Ducts
Filter cleaning and duct cleaning is incredibly beneficial for homeowners with central AC. It maintains fresh, healthy air throughout your home, 24/7.
With the help of a ladder, let’s get up and clean those ducts! All you need is the vacuum cleaner and some patience. Vacuum all dust, cobwebs, etc, and clear out those ducts so there’s no loose material flying around your home.
You can also use a damp cloth to wipe down any central air conditioning grilles scattered throughout your ceiling, walls or floor.
However, if you would like a thorough clean to remove nasty materials deep in your vents, you will need a licensed technician. There are special rotary brushes and high powered vacuums which air conditioning technicians can use to safely clean out the ductwork where you can’t reach.
Troubleshoot Air Conditioner Performance
Now that everything is clean, your air conditioner is summer ready!
Switch the power back on and go for a test run. If there are any issues with your air conditioning you’ll know soon enough, and can call a local technician for aircon repairs and service.
And if nothing is wrong, you can sit back and enjoy the cool comfort while the kids run around screeching and getting into trouble. At least you know the hard work is done and that your aircon is calmly cooling your home.