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

If you haven’t taken care of it lately, it could be full of mud and yard waste. This accumulation can decrease your unit’s efficiency and cause it to stop working. Or make it wear out more quickly.

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

Routine AC maintenance also helps our technicians locate and address minor issues before they develop into high-priced problems.

Related: How to Keep Your Air Conditioner from Failing

Some of the work we complete involves:

  • Taking a look at the blower, motor, drain line and coils
  • Confirming pressure and temperature
  • Reviewing lines, refrigerant levels and connections

You can still have maintenance done this fall—and we can get your furnace ready for heating season too.

There’s also some upkeep you can do on your own between professional tune-ups. You only need about an hour to get the grime off your outdoor condenser unit, as well as several parts on your indoor HVAC system.

Related: How Often Should You Expect to Get Air Conditioning Service Done?

Tips for Cleaning the Outside AC Unit

Choose a mild day to wash your air conditioner. At least 60 degrees Fahrenheit (20 degrees Celsius) is best. That way, you can test the unit once you’ve cleaned it.

You’ll only need a handful 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

Five Steps to Clean the Outside Unit

1. Turn Off the Power

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

2. Clean the Outside

Take out rubbish from the unit. This includes branches, bushes, weeds and grass.

Then run the vacuum to gently clean the metallic fins. These parts are also known as condenser coils and transfer heat away from your equipment.

You need to be careful with these fine coils. Misshapen or crushed fins can affect efficiency.

3. Fix Bent Fins

Use a butter knife to rearrange bent fins. You can also use a fin comb from an appliance part website. A pro from Integrity AC & Heating LLC should handle extensive damage.

4. Clean the Inside

After taking out the fan, pull out leaves and other yard rubbish. Then clean the inside of the system with a wet cloth.

The only coil cleaner you should use is water. Use gentle pressure from a hose nozzle to rinse the fins, directing water from the inside out. Replace the fan once you’re finished.

5. Test Your Air Conditioner

Now it’s time to restore power and turn your air conditioner back on. If it’s not working correctly, reach out to us a call at 602-971-0567.

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

After, Three Steps to Clean the Indoor Unit

1. Turn Off the Power

Turn off the power to your furnace at the breaker box.

2. Check Your Filter

Furnace filters need to be exchanged every couple of months, depending on the model you use.

Not sure when you last checked yours? Remove it and hold it up to the light. If you can’t see light through it, 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 supple plastic tube. If it’s scummy, you can clean it by flowing thinned bleach through the tube to sanitize 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

Don’t Forget About Maintenance Again

Annual air conditioner maintenance from Integrity AC & Heating LLC can make your system more efficient and help it last longer. We also provide practical service agreements, so you won’t forget to schedule your annual tune-up!