Your AC system will obviously not be very effective if the condenser cannot produce cold air. Even if you system has great airflow, it will be hard to cool down your home if the AC is not making the air cold. This article explains the most common problem with condenser units and how to fix it. This simple cleaning job will not require any HVAC experience of special tools.
What are the Condenser Coils
Even if you don't know what condenser coils are, you have probably seen them. Most condenser units have exterior and interior walls that are completely lined with coils. They are obviously behind the protective metal cage, but the aluminum that you can see inside is actually part of the coils. These coils have finned aluminum sheets mounted to the outside. The space between these small fins can get clogged with dirt. Furthermore, the thin fins can get bent and smashed. All of this will result in reduced cold air production. Basically, it will slow down the production of cold through your refrigerant lines. It will also cause your condenser fan to run at higher heats, which can put more stress on the unit. This will ultimately reduce the lifespan of your unit if you don't regularly clean the coils.
How to Clean Dirty Coils
Most coils can be cleaned with just a hose and some soap. Before you work on your coils you should turn off the power. Of course, your unit will probably get wet on a regular basis, so this not a required method, but it is still a good idea.
First, spray down the coils with a powerful hose stream. Don't use a pressure washer because if the pressure it too high, it could actually bend the aluminum. This first rinse will wash away most of the loose dirt. Then, if you spray some liquid cleaner into the coils it will break down the more stubborn dirt. Finally, wash this soap and dirt out by spraying it down again with a hose.
This is obviously a very simple project. You can go do it right now with hardly any preparation. It is a good idea to perform this maintenance once a year. However, if you find this to be too inconvenient, you can prevent your coils from getting so dirty by covering your unit whenever you are not using it for long periods (like the winter). For professional cleaning or repair, contact AC repair services.