Building Construction, Renovation & Maintenance

Air Conditioner Cleaning and Maintenance


Cleaning and servicing your air conditioner

It is important that air conditioners are regularly cleaned and serviced to keep them running correctly and efficiently. Here we look at what needs to be done and how often.


See the full Fixed Abode article "Bakso and the Art of Air Conditioner Maintenance" here...


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split air conditioner mitsubishi indoor unit

It is very important to clean air conditioners regularly

Air conditioners make our lives comfortable especially in the tropical climates. Air conditioners are often required to work very hard running for many hours each day particularly in working environments.

The indoor 'evaporator' unit draws in large volumes of air from the room and blows it over the cooling fins of the air conditioner's cooling coil to remove heat before returning it to the room.

Similarly the outdoor compressor unit draws in outside air and blows it over the heat dissipation fins of the compressor coil to carry away heat to the atmosphere.

An enormous volume of air passes through an air conditioner over a period of weeks and much of this air is laden with dust from internal rooms and from the outside atmosphere (particularly if there is a busy traffic area close by).

The dust gets lodged on the heat transfer surfaces and builds up over time acting as insulation on the fins of the coils and greatly reducing the air conditioner's ability to transfer heat, as a result the air conditioner has to work for longer periods to remove the same amount of heat and of course it uses more power.

air conditioner compressor outdoor unit mitsubish

How often should you clean your air conditioners?

In most situations it is advisable to clean your air conditioner (both the indoor and outdoor units) every 3 months. If you are in a very dusty environment (schools are notorious for being dusty with regular traffic of many people) it is wise to clean them more often than this conversely if the air conditioner is not used very often then obviously you do not need to clean them as frequently.

Cleaning your air conditioners regularly keeps them running efficiently and saves you money. It is important that air conditioners are cleaned correctly using equipment designed for the job.

Air conditioner installation

Correct installation of an air conditioner is important to make sure that it is electrically safe, that the flow of air is good and that it is positioned correctly in the space it is to cool. Particular care needs to be taken to when working out where the pipes and particularly the water drain from the indoor unit will go.

Air conditioner servicing

There are a number of aspects of an air conditioner that may require servicing:

  1. Leakage of refrigerant which will result in the air conditioner not blowing cold air.
  2. A blocked drain which will result in water dripping from the indoor unit.
  3. Failure of the compressor which may be caused by electrical supply problems.
  4. A burnt out circuit board in the AC controller unit usually caused by problems with the electrical supply.
  5. Air conditioner not cold enough due to an excessive build up of dirt on the heat transfer fins.

Air conditioners are usually very reliable machines. Obviously they vary from one manufacturere to another and there are certain brands we prefer to install for our clients because we feel they are better value for money and also because the extensive experience of our tradesmen tells us which are most reliable.


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