tools for an air conditioner service

Tips for Cleaning Your AC System

With summer ending in Alice, now is an ideal time to get a head start on air conditioner maintenance.

If you haven’t taken care of it recently, it could be clogged with dust and yard refuse. This buildup can decrease your unit’s efficiency and cause it to break down. Or make it wear out faster.

We recommend having your air conditioning system professionally tuned-up annually. Why? A clean unit can be more energy efficient, which could save you money on electric costs.

Routine AC maintenance also helps our technicians locate and take care of minor issues before they become costly problems.

Related: How to Keep Your Air Conditioner from Failing

Some of the work we do consists of:

  • Inspecting the blower, motor, drain line and coils
  • Checking pressure and temperature
  • Reviewing lines, refrigerant levels and connections

It’s not too late to have service done this fall—and we can get your furnace ready for heating season too.

Schedule maintenance now


There’s also some maintenance you can do on your own between professional tune-ups. You just need about an hour to get the grime off your outdoor condenser unit, as well as a few parts 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 best. That way, you can run your equipment once you’ve cleaned it.

You’ll only need a few things:

  • 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

Stop the power to your air conditioner at the breaker box.

2. Clean the Outside

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

Then run the vacuum to cautiously clean the metallic fins. These components are also called as condenser coils and divert heat away from your equipment.

You need to be careful with these delicate coils. Warped or crushed fins can influence efficiency.

3. Fix Bent Fins

Use a butter knife to straighten misshapen fins. You can also use a fin comb from an appliance parts website. A pro from Rescue Heating & Air should fix extensive damage.

4. Clean the Inside

After extracting the fan, dig out leaves and other yard waste. Then wipe the inside of the system with a wet sponge.

The only coil cleaner you have to have is water. Use light pressure from a hose nozzle to clean the fins, directing water from the inside out. Reinstall the fan once you’re finished.

5. Test Your Air Conditioner

It’s safe to restore power and turn your air conditioner back on. If it’s not working properly, reach out to us a call at 361-265-4371.

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

3 Steps to Clean the Indoor Unit

1. Turn Off the Power

Stop the electricity to your furnace at the breaker box.

2. Check Your Filter

Furnace filters need to be replaced every several months, depending on the model you use.

Can’t remember when you last checked yours? Pull it out and tilt it toward the light. If light isn’t visible, buy 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 flexible plastic tube. If it’s dirty, you can clean it by flowing thinned bleach through the tube to flush the line. Or you can get a new tube.

Clean the drain port using a small, round paintbrush. Connect 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 Rescue Heating & Air can make your system more efficient and help it last longer. We also have practical service agreements, so you won’t forget to plan your routine service!

Back To Blog