If you depend on a central air conditioner to keep your home cool during the hot summer months, you may wonder if there is anything you can do to keep it maintained. If so, use the following tips for cleaning your central air conditioning unit once a month during the summer.
Make Sure the Surrounding Area Is Clear
When you go to perform the monthly cleaning of your air conditioner, first look around the outside of the unit to make sure that no leaves or branches have grown up against the exterior or are within a few inches of the vents. When these vents become blocked, the unit has to work harder to pull air in from the outside, putting an extra strain on the AC unit's motor and condenser.
If you find any branches from bushes or trees that are already touching the unit, or if they appear as though they may grow in that direction, trim them back or cut them off. This should keep the area clear enough to allow ample air to reach the vents.
Brush Off the Condenser Coils
After taking care of any branches and leaves that may be blocking the vents, your next cleaning task involves brushing off the condenser coils. The coils are typically seen through the exterior vents on the unit. Because air is pulled in through the vents, dust and dirt can accumulate on these coils, eventually blocking the air flow.
Use a soft hand brush with long bristles to clean between the vents to remove any excess dirt and debris from the coils. Make sure you use light pressure, as pushing down too hard could damage the coils.
Pour Bleach Through Condensate Drain Line
Another way to keep your air conditioner clean is to pour bleach through the condensate drain line during your monthly maintenance. Since the line is exposed to constant moisture, mold and mildew can build up within the tube. This mold could then spread up into the condenser and send spores through your home.
To clean the drain line, turn off the air conditioner, then detach the line from the condenser. Place a funnel into the end of the tube, and pour a cup of bleach through it. Reattach the line, then wait about an hour before turning your AC unit back on.
Using the above tips every month can help you keep your central air conditioner in proper working order during the summer months. However, if you suspect there could be an issue with your AC unit, contact an HVAC service to have them inspect your air conditioner and fix any problems before they cause the system to break down. For more information, contact companies like Pacific Heating & Cooling.