Clean Dirty AC Evaporator Coils

The last thing you want on a hot summer day is an air conditioning unit that blows hot air! If you’ve experienced this problem before, you know how frustrating it can be. One of the main reasons AC units don’t get cold enough is dirty evaporator coils. If you’re handy, you can clean AC evaporator coils yourself, and save a few bucks.

How to Clean AC Evaporator Coils Yourself

First things first. Why is it so important to keep AC evaporator coils clean? Because dust, dirt, and other debris can build up so much, that the coils cannot absorb heat from the return air. That causes the air you in your home to feel warm and uncomfortable.

Now that you know the basics of why you should clean your AC evaporator coils, here’s how to do it:

Remove Evaporator Coil Access Panel

First, turn your thermostat to off and disconnect the power supply from the air handler. Remove the screws and foil tape that secures the panel covering the evaporator coils. Now you can take the panel off and see the dirty AC evaporator coils. Many evaporator coils are set up as an A-frame, as you can see below.ac evaporator coils

Asses Condition of Your AC Evaporator Coils

Once you have exposed the AC evaporator coils, you will be able to see if they’re due for a cleaning. Chances are, if you’re reading this tutorial, you’ve never cleaned them, so they most likely need to be! We recommend cleaning them once a year to keep them in good working order.

If the build-up is excessive, consider having a professional do the job, as you might have to remove more complex parts to really get the ac evaporator coils clean.

In cases where build-up isn’t too bad, you can clean ac evaporator coils yourself with a special spray.

Clean Your AC Evaporator Coils

Use, foaming ac evaporator coil cleaner spray to remove dust and dirt. You can purchase ac evaporator coil cleaner online or at a hardware store near you.

Spray the foam cleaner directly on the AC evaporator coils. Make sure the entire surface is covered evenly — don’t be shy! You’ll see the spray start to foam up like soapy water. It will grab all that gunk and rinse it away on its own. We recommend cleaning ac evaporator coils when it’s warm out, as running the unit helps the cleaner rinse faster.

ac evaporator coil foam cleanerReassemble AC Evaporator Coil Panel

Screw the panel back into place and be sure to tape the top and bottom back up with the foil HVAC tape. Now all you have to do is restore power, turn the thermostat back on, and enjoy your fresh, cool air from your AC.

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