Air conditioners work by drawing out the moisture from the nearby air. This lowers the humidity of air air and cools it in the process. The cooled air is then blown throughout your dwelling by a series of vents and ductwork. The two major parts of most home air conditioning systems are the evaporator and the condenser. Both of these fixtures need to be serviced in order for your air conditioner to work at its best. You can service your home air conditioner yourself without having to wait on a technician with the help of some cleaners and a few tools.
Things You'll Need
- Condenser fin cleaner
- Feather duster
- Garden hose
- Air conditioner filters
- Nylon brush
- Evaporator coil cleaner
- Flexible hose
Turn off the power for the air conditioner. In the main circuit breaker switch for your home or dwelling, look for the switch that controls the air conditioner unit. Move the switch to the "Off" setting. Some AC units may have a separate cut off switch, sometimes located by the condenser on the exterior of the dwelling.
Replace the air conditioner filter. This is an easy part of servicing your air conditioner that many people forget to do. The filter needs to be changed at regular intervals, otherwise your air conditioner will work harder and have a shorter life.
Remove the cover on the condensing unit outside. The cover may be all in one piece, or you may be able to loosen the screws and pull off one side at a time. Use a feather duster to clean off any dirt or dust on the outside of the condenser fins. Spray with a condenser fin cleaner and allow it to soak in according to the instructions. Gently rinse off the cleaner with a fine mist from a garden hose.
Locate the evaporator coils for your AC unit. The evaporator is typically located in the basement or attic and will be in close proximity to the blower or air handler. Spray the coils with a coil cleaner and allow it time to soak in. Brush off the coils with a nylon brush and rinse well.
Clean out the drain pan underneath the evaporator coils. Water condensation generated by the operation of the coils drips down and falls into the drain pan. From here, the water is directed outside. Occasionally the drain hose on the pan can become clogged with mold or other debris. Clean out the drain pipe by running a flexible tube through it. Pour a capfull of bleach down the drain hose to kill off any mold inside, followed by hot water.
Clean off the air conditioner registers with a feather duster. These are the vent coverings on the end of the air conditioner vent that direct the cooled air throughout your house. They can collect quite a bit of dust and allergens. Keeping these clean will also help the airflow in your system.
Tips & Warnings
- Don't use hard brushes or powerful water streams when cleaning the condenser fins, as they are fragile and can bend easily.
- Photo Credit Photos.com/Photos.com/Getty Images
How to Service an Air Conditioning Unit
According to the City of Austin Green Builder Program, if your air conditioner is not properly serviced it will lose 5 percent...
How to Repair Home Air Conditioners
If your home air conditioning won't switch on, your first thought may be to call the repair man. However, you can identify...
How to Service Auto Air Conditioning
An automobile's air conditioning system provides cold, conditioned air to the cabin for comfortable driving. The system uses a refrigerant which will...
Do-It-Yourself Air Conditioner Service
Any time you attempt to service your air conditioner yourself, be sure to disconnect and disable the electrical unit to prevent injury....
How an Air Conditioner Service Valve Works
If you’ve ever had problems with your central air conditioning system and called in an HVAC repair technician to take a look...
How to Repair an Air Conditioner
You can repair the two most common problems of a window unit air conditioner with a few basic hand tools. Also, some...
DIY: Auto Air Conditioning Service
The air conditioning system of an automobile gives the vehicle cold, conditioned controlled air for the sake of comfortable driving. What powers...
Do it Yourself Home AC Repairs
Air conditioners are important in areas where hot weather is a problem. When an air conditioner stops working during a heat wave,...
Do-it-yourself Air Conditioner Repairs
Do-It-Yourself Air Conditioner Service; Print this article; Things You'll Need. Soft brush; Soap; Water; Shrub trimmer; Air return filter; Duct tape; Freon;...
How to Service a Window AC
Give your window air conditioners a check up and cleaning each spring. Turning on an air conditioner on the first hot day...