tools for an air conditioner service

Tips for Cleaning Your AC System in Rockford

With summer coming to an end in Rockford, now is a good time to get a head start on air conditioner maintenance.

If you haven’t washed it this year, it could be clogged with dust and debris from your yard. This collection can reduce your unit’s efficiency and cause it to malfunction. Or require replacement faster.

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

Routine AC maintenance also helps our technicians spot and handle small issues before they turn into 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
  • Watching pressure and temperature
  • Examining lines, refrigerant totals and connections

You can still have a tune-up done this fall—and we can get your furnace prepared for heating season too.

Schedule maintenance now


There’s also some work you can do by yourself between professional tune-ups. You just need about an hour to wash your outdoor condenser unit, as well as a couple of 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 warm day to clean your air conditioner. At least 60 degrees Fahrenheit (20 degrees Celsius) is great. That way, you can check your system once you’ve cleaned it.

You’ll only need a couple of tools:

  • 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

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

2. Clean the Outside

Remove debris from the equipment. This includes branches, bushes, weeds and grass.

Then turn on the vacuum to cautiously clean the metallic fins. These components are also referred to as condenser coils and divert heat away from your unit.

You need to be considerate of these delicate coils. Warped or crumpled fins can affect efficiency.

3. Fix Bent Fins

Use a butter knife to adjust misshapen fins. You can also buy a fin comb from an appliance parts retailer. A pro from Crome Mechanical should fix large amounts of damage.

4. Clean the Inside

After taking out the fan, pull out leaves and other yard waste. Then clean the inside of the equipment with a wet rag.

The only coil cleaner you should use is water. Use light pressure from a hose nozzle to wash the fins, directing water from the inside out. Put the fan back in once you’re completed.

5. Test Your Air Conditioner

You can now restore power and turn your air conditioner back on. If it’s not working like it should, reach out to us a call at 616-200-7264.

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

3 Steps to Clean the Indoor Unit

1. Turn Off the Power

Cut 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.

Can’t remember when you last replaced yours? Remove it and hold it up to the light. If light isn’t visible, replace it.

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 sanitize it by draining diluted bleach through the tube to sanitize the line. Or you can get a new tube.

Wash the drain port using a small, round paintbrush. Reconnect 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 Crome Mechanical can make your unit more efficient and help it last longer. We also offer convenient service agreements, so you won’t forget to schedule your routine maintenance!

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