tools for an air conditioner service

Tips for Cleaning Your AC System

With summer coming to an end in Pocatello, now is a great time to get ahead on air conditioner maintenance.

If you haven’t washed it this year, it could be blocked with dirt and yard waste. This collection can decrease your unit’s efficiency and cause it to stop working. Or require replacement sooner.

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

Consistent AC maintenance also helps our technicians discover and address slight issues before they become high-priced problems.

Related: How to Keep Your Air Conditioner from Failing

Some of the work we do includes:

  • Viewing the blower, motor, drain line and coils
  • Confirming pressure and temperature
  • Examining lines, refrigerant totals and connections

You can still have maintenance 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 alone between professional tune-ups. It only takes about an hour to wash your outdoor condenser unit, as well as several pieces on your indoor HVAC system.

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

How to Clean Your Outside AC Unit

Pick a mild day to scrub your air conditioner. At least 60 degrees Fahrenheit (20 degrees Celsius) is ideal. That way, you can test the unit 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

Switch off 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 turn on the vacuum to cautiously clean the metallic fins. These pieces are also called as condenser coils and move heat away from your system.

You need to be careful with these delicate coils. Bent or crushed fins can affect efficiency.

3. Fix Bent Fins

Use a butter knife to rearrange warped fins. You can also get a fin comb from an appliance parts website. A pro from Vogts Heating & Air should handle severe damage.

4. Clean the Inside

After removing the fan, fish out leaves and other yard litter. Then wipe the inside of the system with a wet sponge.

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. Reinstall the fan once you’re done.

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, give us a call at 208-621-0129.

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

3 Steps to Clean the Indoor Unit

1. Turn Off the Power

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

2. Check Your Filter

Furnace filters need to be changed every few months, depending on the kind you use.

Unsure when you last put in a new one? Take it out and angle it toward 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 inspect your air conditioner’s drain line—it’s a supple plastic tube. If it’s scummy, you can clean it by pouring water-down bleach through the tube to sanitize the line. Or you can buy a new tube.

Clean the drain port using a small, round paintbrush. Hook up the drain tube and restore power.

Related: How to Keep Your Air Conditioner Running Well Through Fall

Never Forget a Tune-Up Again

Annual air conditioner maintenance from Vogts Heating & Air can make your equipment more efficient and help it last longer. We also provide practical service agreements, so you won’t forget to plan your routine tune-up!

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