Tips for Cleaning Your AC System

September 20, 2019

With summer winding down in Lafayette, now is a good time to get a kick start on air conditioner maintenance.

If you haven’t washed it recently, it could be clogged with dirt and yard waste. This collection can decrease your unit’s efficiency and cause it to stop working. Or require replacement sooner.

We recommend having your air conditioning system professionally serviced once a year. Why? A clean system can be more energy efficient, which could save you money on electric bills.

Routine AC maintenance also helps our technicians locate and take care of small issues before they become high-priced problems.

Related: How to Keep Your Air Conditioner from Failing

Some of the work we do includes:

  • Viewing the blower, motor, drain line and coils
  • Checking pressure and temperature
  • Examining lines, refrigerant amounts and connections

It’s not too late to have service 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 by yourself between professional tune-ups. You only need about an hour to get the grime off your outdoor condenser unit, as well as several parts on your indoor HVAC system.

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

How to Clean Your Outside AC Unit

Select a warm day to clean your air conditioner. At least 60 degrees Fahrenheit (20 degrees Celsius) is great. That way, you can run your equipment 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

Cut the power to your air conditioner at the breaker box.

2. Clean the Outside

Empty rubbish from the unit. This includes branches, bushes, weeds and grass.

Then use the vacuum to cautiously clean the metallic fins. These parts are also referred to as condenser coils and move heat away from your equipment.

You need to be careful with these delicate coils. Bent or crinkled fins can impact efficiency.

3. Fix Bent Fins

Use a butter knife to straighten warped fins. You can also get a fin comb from an appliance parts retailer. A pro from AC Sales should handle extensive damage.

4. Clean the Inside

After extracting the fan, pull out leaves and other yard rubbish. Then clean the inside of the unit with a wet rag.

The only coil cleaner you need is water. Use light pressure from a hose nozzle to clean the fins, directing water from the inside out. Reinstall the fan once you’re finished.

5. Test Your Air Conditioner

Now it’s time to restore power and turn your air conditioner back on. If it’s not working properly, give us a call at (337) 234-2345.

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

3 Steps to Clean the Indoor Unit

1. Turn Off the Power

Cut the power to your furnace at the breaker box.

2. Check Your Filter

Furnace filters must be changed every several months, depending on the model you use.

Not sure when you last checked yours? Pull it out and hold it up to the light. If light isn’t visible, 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 clean it by draining thinned bleach through the tube to flush the line. Or you can replace the tube.

Scrub the drain port using a small, round paintbrush. Reconnect the drain tube and restore power.

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

Never Forget a Tune-Up Again

Annual air conditioner maintenance from AC Sales can make your system more efficient and help it last longer. We also provide handy service agreements, so you won’t forget to schedule your routine maintenance!