Properly Cleaning Your Air Conditioning Unit

In California, where temperatures routinely pique in the 70s, winter was more of an afterthought. Other parts of the country felt the winter chill, but some states like California may have had to fire up their air conditioning units just to create a comfortable atmosphere. Before summer kicks in and the rest of the country has to do the same, you should check your air conditioning unit and clean it thoroughly. Even cleaning a spot cooler will keep your bills lower, and your house cooler.


You will need to locate the furnace for your home, then look directly above it. You’ll find a foil-covered piece called the “plenum,” which you will need to remove. The foil you see acts as insulation, but you will need to carefully remove it from the plenum (it should be taped on), then remove the access plate by unscrewing it. Use a stiff brush, a wire brush will work well here, and clean the inside and underside of the evaporator with it.

Screw the unit back into place and re-affix the tape that you removed when you are finished.


Your condenser unit is typically located outside of the home, often on the side of the house or in the backyard. Among the usual maintenance tasks you should do, trim the grass around the unit frequently. This overgrowth can restrict airflow. You will need some commercial coil cleaner, and you may need to remove the grill on your condenser unit. Wipe down each of the fins, but don’t use your garden hose. It may sound tempting to save yourself some time, but you are more likely to turn the caked on dirt into mud and gum up the system.


When you need to troubleshoot a smaller unit, like a window air conditioner or fan coil units, the process is almost the same. The device functions almost like a home air conditioning unit, but there are some subtle differences. For one, unplug the unit to make sure you are not in danger of electrical shock. Remove the grille routinely and wipe down the dust you find within. You should also clean the coils in the unit at the beginning of the season where it will see the most use.

Once your unit is clean and working well, focus on keeping the temperature comfortable. The higher you can withstand the heat, the better for your power bill. Air conditioners have their uses on the job site, but it’s important to find an acceptable temperature where work can continue without delay.
MovinCool is an air conditioning manufacturer and retailer that specializes in cooling systems. Order portable air conditioners online at MovinCool.