tools for an air conditioner service

Tips for Cleaning Your AC System

With summer winding down in West Valley City, now is a good time to get a kick start on air conditioner maintenance.

If you haven’t washed it recently, it could be full of dust and yard waste. This accumulation can limit your unit’s efficiency and cause it to malfunction. Or make it wear out faster.

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

Regular AC maintenance also helps our technicians locate and take care of slight issues before they become high-priced problems.

Related: How to Keep Your Air Conditioner from Failing

Some of the work we perform involves:

  • Taking a look at the blower, motor, drain line and coils
  • Confirming pressure and temperature
  • Reviewing lines, refrigerant levels 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 maintenance you can do alone between professional tune-ups. It only takes about an hour to wash your outdoor condenser unit, as well as a couple of pieces 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 mild day to clean your air conditioner. At least 60 degrees Fahrenheit (20 degrees Celsius) is ideal. That way, you can check your system once you’ve cleaned it.

You’ll only need a handful of items:

  • 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 juice to your air conditioner at the breaker box.

2. Clean the Outside

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

Then turn on the vacuum to gently clean the metallic fins. These pieces are also referred to as condenser coils and move heat away from your equipment.

You need to be careful with these fine coils. Bent 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 Select Comfort System Heating & Air Conditioning should handle extensive damage.

4. Clean the Inside

After taking out the fan, dig out leaves and other yard rubbish. Then mop the inside of the equipment with a wet cloth.

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

5. Test Your Air Conditioner

It’s safe to restore power and turn your air conditioner back on. If it’s not working correctly, reach out to us a call at 801-305-4777.

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 juice to your furnace at the breaker box.

2. Check Your Filter

Furnace filters must be changed every couple of months, depending on the type you use.

Not sure when you last checked yours? Pull it out and tilt it toward the light. If you can’t see light through it, get a new one.

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 pouring diluted bleach through the tube to clean the line. Or you can replace the tube.

Scrub the drain port using a small, round paintbrush. Hook up the drain tube and switch 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 Select Comfort System Heating & Air Conditioning can make your equipment more efficient and help it last longer. We also have convenient service agreements, so you won’t forget to schedule your regular service!

Back To Blog