tools for an air conditioner service

Tips for Cleaning Your AC System

With summer ending in Rochester, now is a great time to get a kick start on air conditioner maintenance.

If you haven’t taken care of it lately, it could be full of dust and yard waste. This collection can decrease your unit’s efficiency and cause it to break down. Or wear it down faster.

We suggest having your air conditioning system professionally maintained annually. Why? A clean unit can be more energy efficient, which could save you money on utility expenses.

Regular AC maintenance also helps our technicians spot and address slight issues before they become costly problems.

Related: How to Keep Your Air Conditioner from Failing

Some of the work we complete includes:

  • Taking a look at the blower, motor, drain line and coils
  • Checking pressure and temperature
  • Testing lines, refrigerant totals and connections

There’s still time to have service done this fall—and we can get your furnace prepped for heating season too.

Schedule maintenance now


There’s also some work you can do alone between professional tune-ups. It only takes about an hour to get the grime off your outdoor condenser unit, as well as a couple of components on your indoor HVAC system.

Related: How Often Should You Expect to Get Air Conditioning Service Done?

How to Clean Your Outside AC Unit

Choose a temperate day to wash your air conditioner. At least 60 degrees Fahrenheit (20 degrees Celsius) is great. That way, you can check your system once you’ve cleaned it.

You’ll only need a handful of tools:

  • Wet-dry vacuum and hose with a soft brush attachment
  • Screwdriver
  • Butter knife
  • Damp rag
  • Small, round paintbrush
  • Replacement furnace filter (if necessary)

Related: How AC Repair and Maintenance Can Actually Save You Money

5 Steps to Clean the Outside Unit

1. Turn Off the Power

Switch off the electricity to your air conditioner at the breaker box.

2. Clean the Outside

Remove waste from the unit. This includes branches, bushes, weeds and grass.

Then use the vacuum to gently clean the metallic fins. These pieces are also called as condenser coils and transfer heat away from your unit.

You need to be cautious with these delicate coils. Misshapen or crushed fins can impact efficiency.

3. Fix Bent Fins

Use a butter knife to straighten bent fins. You can also use a fin comb from an appliance parts retailer. A pro from Brogan Heating & AC Inc should fix large amounts of damage.

4. Clean the Inside

After taking out the fan, fish out leaves and other yard litter. Then clean the inside of the equipment with a wet sponge.

The only coil cleaner you have to have is water. Use slight pressure from a hose nozzle to rinse the fins, showering water from the inside out. Reinstall the fan once you’re done.

5. Test Your Air Conditioner

Now it’s time to restore power and turn your air conditioner back on. If it’s not working correctly, contact us a call at 507-218-0088.

Related: Air Conditioner Service: Pay a Little Now, Save Later

3 Steps to Clean the Indoor Unit

1. Turn Off the Power

Turn off the power to your furnace at the breaker box.

2. Check Your Filter

Furnace filters need to be exchanged every several months, depending on the type you use.

Unsure when you last checked yours? Remove it and tilt it toward the light. If there’s no light visible, replace it.

3. Clean the Inside

Remove the blower door and vacuum up dust.

Then take a look at your air conditioner’s drain line—it’s a pliable plastic tube. If it’s scummy, you can clean it by flowing thinned bleach through the tube to sanitize the line. Or you can get a new tube.

Scrub the drain port using a small, round paintbrush. Hook up the drain tube and turn the power back on.

Related: How to Keep Your Air Conditioner Running Well Through Fall

Never Forget a Tune-Up Again

Annual air conditioner maintenance from Brogan Heating & AC Inc can make your unit more efficient and help it last longer. We also provide handy service agreements, so you won’t forget to plan your regular tune-up!

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