The Basics of Air Conditioner Coil Cleaning

The Basics of Air Conditioner Coil Cleaning

There are several crucial components of your home’s AC system that you may not be too familiar with. One of these is your air conditioner coils. If a coating of dust, dirt or other debris accumulate on the AC system’s coils, efficiency can fall significantly. This is because this material creates insulation around the coil, reducing their ability to transfer heat.

The bottom line is, this will reduce efficiency of your AC system and drive up cooling costs.

Now for the good news – this can be prevented by cleaning the coils regularly. However, first it may be beneficial to learn a bit more about the process, and why it is important.

Negative Effects of Failing to Clean Your AC Coils

While you may not be in the habit of inspecting your AC unit regularly, if you are able to access the unit, take a look at the coil. This is the long, tube shaped into a coil with metal fins on the exterior. If this has never been cleaned, chances are it is pretty dirty. Keep in mind, the air you breathe is going through this day and night, so keeping it clean should be a top priority.

While a dirty coil is going to result in inefficient cooling of the air in your home, there are other negative consequences as well, including:

  • More frequent breakdowns of your AC unit
  • Higher energy costs
  • An overall shorter lifespan for your AC unit if the problem is allowed to persist

Is it Time for Coil Cleaning?

It is also a good idea to get to know the signs that it is time to call for coil cleaning. After all, do you know the answer to, “how much dirt is too much dirt?”

Generally, having your AC coils cleaned twice annually will be sufficient. However, there may be other factors that necessitate cleanings more often, such as:

  • Older equipment
  • Higher usage
  • Your location (i.e. areas where there is a lot of dust, construction, pollution, etc.)

Coil Cleaning Tips

If you have noticed that the coils are dirty and want to do something about it, keep in mind that they are extremely delicate. In fact, the fins can be bent with just a small amount of force. Ideally, you should leave this cleaning process to the professionals, as they can clean the coils without causing additional damage.

If you do choose to move forward with this on your own, the easiest method is going to be to use a water hose. However, as stated before, it is best just to let the professionals handle the job as part of their annual maintenance.

Call for Professional Service

If you want to keep your AC unit running as efficiently as possible, then having it inspected and maintained twice a year by the professionals is the best course of action. During this annual maintenance make sure you request that the technician cleans the coils. This will help your unit perform more efficiently.

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