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How to clean air conditioner coils

Find out what you need to know on how to clean air conditioner coils.

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Learn how to clean air conditioner coils.If you have an HVAC system in your home, one step in the proper maintenance and upkeep of the system is in learning how to clean the air conditioner coils.

If your air conditioner is no longer under warranty, you can keep the system running at its best by checking to make sure it has clean coils. You can speak with an HVAC contractor and get an estimate on cleaning the coils for you. Or you can save money by learning how to clean the air conditioner coils on your own.

An HVAC contractor can also provide you with quotes on air conditioner prices and can install air conditioners for you.

Proper maintenance on your AC will keep you from having to get air conditioner estimates on a new unit. Keeping your home cooling system clean and inspected will also help you save money on your electric bill.

The first step in learning how to clean the air conditioner coils is by turning off the main power switch to the unit. The evaporator cover will be located near the fan on the unit. It should be easy to get to, but some units require you to call a professional because the coils must be removed and the AC fluids drained.

The cover will be held in place with metal screws. Remove these with a socket wrench. Peel any metal foil tape along the edges of the panel.

Read our "How to clean air conditioner coils" guide, and something still off with your AC? Connect with a contractor now!

Inspect the coils and fins to see if they are within reach. If so, fill a bucket with warm soapy water and wipe the coils clean. You can also purchase a can of air conditioner evaporator coil cleaner from your local hardware store. Do not use harsh chemicals or cleaners that could damage your AC unit.

Also, lay down a plastic drop cloth if the fan motor is beneath the coils for protection.

After you have tried wiping the coils clean, if there is still mold and other debris left behind, you may have to call a professional to have the coils steam cleaned with a solvent-based cleaner.

If you are cleaning the coils with spray cleaner, spray the foam directly onto the coils until they are completely covered. The foam does not need to be rinsed off. After a few minutes, the foam will liquefy. Turn your AC unit back on and allow the condensate water to rinse the coils.

While you have the cover off, you may want to pour an equal mixture of bleach and water into you drain pan to help keep the drain line clean. Replace the access panel and tape.

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Learning the basics of how to clean you air conditioner's coils will save you money in the long run. For best results, perform this basic maintenance at least twice a year. If you do not want to learn how to clean the air conditioner coils, Reply! can help you locate a professional who can help.

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Photo credit: handymanhowto.com

About the Author

Rachel Wright is an SEO content editor at Reply! with more than 10 years of editing experience. She enjoys interior design and gardening. To share home improvement ideas, find her on Google+.