How To Clean Your Air Conditioner

How to Clean Your Air Conditioner

Cleaning your air conditioner might not be a task anyone looks forward to, but it can yield significant rewards in the long run. Regular cleaning not only improves your air conditioner's efficiency but also enhances your indoor air quality by preventing dust and mould build-up.

The Importance of Regular Cleaning

A dirty air conditioner can become clogged with dust and may even develop mould over time. This not only negatively impacts your indoor air quality but also forces your air conditioner to work harder, driving up your energy costs. A simple clean can save you money and improve the system's performance.

General Cleaning Tips

The following advice primarily applies to split-system air conditioners, which are the most common type in Australian homes, but it can also be relevant for ducted and wall-window models

  1. Check the Instructions: Your air conditioner should come with a manual detailing how to access and clean the air filters. If you no longer have the manual, you may be able to download a copy from the manufacturer's website. Ensure the unit is turned off at the wall before performing any cleaning.
  2. Clean the Filters: Indoor Unit Dust Filters: Regularly clean the primary dust filters in the indoor unit. A clogged filter forces the air conditioner to work harder, leading to higher running costs. Remove the filters and give them a good brush or shake outside. For a thorough clean, use a vacuum cleaner's dusting brush head. If the filters are grimy, wash them in warm water with mild detergent and ensure they are completely dry before reinserting.  Note: If your air conditioner is positioned higher than normal or if it's not safe for you to use a ladder, it's best to call a professional. Sanitair offers a standard filter cleaning and sanitising service at an affordable rate, ensuring you stay safe and your air conditioner remains in optimal condition.
  3. The Outdoor Unit: Keep the outdoor compressor unit clear of surrounding grass and plants, and regularly brush away dust, leaves, and cobwebs. With a blower, blow the area around the outdoor unit to clear any dust, leaves, but leave internal cleaning to professionals.

Professional Annual Cleaning

For components that are hard to reach, such as the indoor evaporator coils, fins, blower fan, air-well, drain lines and drain pans professional cleaning is essential. This is particularly important if you live in a dusty or humid area where dust and mould build-up inside the unit can be a significant risk. Professional cleaning ensures your air conditioner runs efficiently and maintains clean indoor air quality. Sanitair have qualified HVAC Hygienists around Australia simply call 1800 130 168 and enter your post code to be directed to your local Certified Air Conditioning Cleaning Technician.

Air Conditioner Cleaning Check List

Monthly:  Clean Indoor Primary Filters: Remove and clean the indoor primary filters to ensure efficient operation and maintain air quality.

Bi-annually: Inspect for Mould and Contamination: After cleaning the primary filters, use a torch to inspect the air-well and indoor coils for any visible signs of mould or bulk contamination. Note: Avoid spraying any fragrances or cleaning products into the air conditioner as these can serve as food sources for mould and bacteria, accelerating their growth.

Annually: Professional Clean and Sanitise: Schedule a professional cleaning and sanitising service with your local Sanitair HVAC Hygienist to address all indoor components of the air conditioner. This is particularly important if you experience any of the following issues:

Leaking Systems: This could be due to a blockage e.g. pests or biofilm in the drain line.

Noisy Systems: Contamination on the blower fan may cause it to become unbalanced, resulting in noisy system.

Unpleasant Odours: A smell similar to a wet sock may indicate mould or bacteria, while a decomposing animal odour could be the result of a dead rodent in the system.

Regular cleaning ensures your air conditioner operates efficiently and maintains clean indoor air quality, preventing potential issues and prolonging the life of your unit.

Regular professional cleaning of the components you can't reach is crucial to keep your air conditioning system in optimal condition. By following these tips and scheduling annual professional cleaning, you can ensure your air conditioner remains efficient and provides clean, healthy air for your home or business.