Keeping Your Outdoor AC Unit Clean and Running Like a Dream

When your outdoor condenser gets dirty, its ability to circulate air deteriorates. Because dirt and debris often accumulate on outdoor AC units, learning how to do a few DIY cleaning tasks will improve your AC’s performance during the Hendersonville, North Carolina, summers.

Safety First

First you have to turn off and unplug your condenser unit. The process varies depending on the HVAC system your home has, but usually there’s an electrical box with a switch installed on the side of your house somewhere close to the outdoor unit.

Cleaning Away Debris

The fins of your condenser are the metal strips that surround your outdoor unit. They’re essential to your system running properly, and when they get dirty they impede proper air flow. Use a vacuum hose or a very soft brush to remove the dirt and debris from the fins. Be careful not to clean too aggressively because they easily bend.

Spraying With Water

If you’re comfortable removing the metal shield (the big boxy piece of metal that has all the fins on it) from your system, you can carefully unscrew it, take it to a different part of the yard, and gently spray it with your hose. Only try this if you’ve worked with HVAC components before, since you don’t want to break anything and need to call for an emergency repair in the middle of summer. We typically recommend that a qualified HVAC technician do this part.

Professional Maintenance

You should not remove any major components of your HVAC system. The electrical components, fan blades, and coils are all parts of the condenser you don’t want to mess with. It’s essential that they get clean as well, but you should leave cleaning them to a professional.

Remember to stop if you feel uncomfortable with the tasks at any point during your DIY cleaning project. It’s always better to call us for scheduled maintenance. Cleaning your outdoor unit yourself isn’t mandatory if you’re willing to invest in a maintenance schedule, so call Nicholson Company today at (828) 697-2638.

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