Why should I clean my ducted air conditioning system?

Cleaning your air conditioning system can significantly improve its functionality and the air quality being pumped into each room. For example, removing obstructions in the vents and ductwork allows air to move more freely through the system, which means the fan coil doesn’t have to work as hard. The result is that the fan coil is less likely to wear out and break down, saving you maintenance costs and money on your next electric bill. On the other hand, the harder your system works to reach the temperature you set, the more electricity it will consume.

Cleaning your air conditioner of dust and dirt can also relieve asthmatics and hay fever sufferers of watery eyes and snot. After all, you’d rather spend sunny days at the beach than cleaning the house!

How do you clean the air conditioning duct system?

There’s a lot to consider when cleaning an air conditioning system, but luckily it’s not as big a task as it might seem. Here are some cleaning suggestions for each component of the system.

Roof Ventilation

Turn off the system and vacuum the vents to remove loose dirt and dust. To remove stubborn dirt, wipe them with a damp cloth. Realistically, ceiling vents should be cleaned every six months or when they start to get dirty. However, if you are sensitive to dust, they may need to be cleaned more frequently.

Outdoor unit

The outdoor unit may require some care as well. It is exposed to the elements and dirt, leaves, and sticks, affecting its functionality. Although the unit is usually housed in a protective enclosure, cleaning can reduce the likelihood of damage or accidental entry of objects into the unit. Simple cleaning and use of a leaf blower to remove loose debris should be sufficient to ensure the proper operation of the outdoor unit.

Cleaning a ducted air conditioning system

The filters, heat exchangers, and fins of an air conditioner require regular maintenance to keep the unit running effectively and efficiently for years to come. If the necessary care is neglected, the air conditioner’s performance will steadily decrease while the energy consumption increases.

Cleaning the heat exchangers/coils

The evaporator fins and condenser coils are highly sensitive and can be bent with little effort. It is better to ask for the help of an air conditioning professional who will clean the coils during a routine maintenance visit. Your air conditioning maintenance should be done twice a year. However, for some systems, a one-time service is adequate. You can also clean the condenser coils between maintenance visits by removing large debris and flushing the coils with a hose after the power is turned off. The evaporator is often challenging to access and should be professionally cleaned.

The importance of cleaning air conditioning coils

It’s believed that unclean evaporator and condenser coils might raise the energy usage of your air conditioner by more than 30%. In addition, reduced heat transfer efficiency can cause other problems, such as poor cooling performance, frozen evaporator coils and compressor overheating.

What can you do to avoid dirty coils?

Check the air filter at least once a month and replace it as needed to maintain the evaporator coils clean. A dirty air filter can cause dust and debris to accumulate on the evaporator instead of the air filter. It can also reduce airflow in the system, leading to other problems. To keep condenser coils clean, keep a two-foot area around the condenser unit free of vegetation and debris, including trash, tall grass, plants, and overhanging trees or bushes. In addition, remove large debris that falls into the condenser coils and be careful when mowing to keep clippings out of the condenser.

Cleaning the filter of a ducted air conditioner

You can clean your ducted air conditioner’s filter by following these simple steps:

  • Loosen the hinged frame attachment of the return air grille. The extension is usually a thumbscrew or sliding clip.
  • Allow the frame to hang vertically by swinging it open.
  • Slide out the filter.
  • Vacuum the lint from the filter.
  • Wash the filter in warm water.
  • Allow the filter to dry out entirely in the sun.
  • Slide the filter back into the hinged grille, swing the grille back into the recess, and screw on the mounting screw or slide around the clip.

Why is air conditioning filter cleaning important?

Filter cleaning is a task commonly considered unnecessary or of low priority. However, it is the essential step in maintaining an efficient and healthy environment. A ducted air conditioner circulates throughout the home, starting in the indoor unit, blowing out through the vents, flowing through the return air grille, and returning to the indoor unit, where the cycle begins again. That’s the reason it’s necessary to have a clean filter as the air passes through here and cycles through your home.

If you don’t clean your filter, dust and lint will accumulate and impede the airflow back to the fan coil (indoor unit). When airflow is restricted, the system has to work harder, using more electricity to pull the air through. This unintentionally increases your electric bill. In addition, if dust and lint are blown past the filter, they can potentially damage the fan coil. The dust and lint can pass through the fan coil unit and circulate throughout your home, creating polluted air that can lead to health problems.

How often should you clean your air conditioner filters?

One should do filter cleaning every 3 to 4 months for a residential system. In a commercial system, it should be done every month. The filter light is automatically set to remind you every six months, but it is essential to do it regularly. Everyone is happier and healthier with a clean filter with lower utility bills and cleaner air to breathe.

Can you spray an air conditioner with water to clean it?

You can spray your air conditioner with water to clean it. Then, just set your garden hose to a strong stream and run it over the unit from top to bottom to clean it thoroughly.

You’ll also need to hose down your condenser occasionally to keep it running more efficiently. But, of course, don’t wet the parts inside the air conditioner that are supposed to stay dry, or the unit will burn out, and you’ll have a big problem on your hands. Although taking care of the condenser is a relatively simple task, if in doubt, be sure to ask a professional for help.

Cleaning the condenser fins

It would be beneficial if you also cleaned the air conditioner’s fins.

First, vacuum them carefully with a soft brush, as they can get bent or otherwise damaged if you wash them too roughly. After that, you can lightly hose down the fins from inside the unit. 

Next, remove the fan and then use moderate water pressure to remove some of the debris on the fins.

Why is cleaning the air conditioning condenser necessary?

A condenser fan helps release heat energy into the outdoor air by blowing air over the outdoor coils (the way for refrigerant flows).

If your outside unit is blocked and the airflow is obstructed, the refrigerant will take considerably longer to release heat, just as your body cannot release heat when wrapped in a wool blanket.

It not only takes longer for the air conditioner to cool your home, but you also waste energy and spend more money. In addition, if the airflow around your outdoor condenser coils isn’t proper, your air conditioner can overheat and break down – usually on one of the hottest days of the year.

If you need your air conditioner checked and cleaned, contact our team 

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