HVAC Cleaning Hacks
As of this Sunday, Spring has officially sprung! Homeowners are compiling their spring to-do lists to ensure a thorough home spring cleaning – but one area many neglect is their home’s HVAC system! Your HVAC components could use a little TLC this spring along with the rest of the home, so below we’ve compiled some helpful HVAC cleaning hacks which will make the job easier for you!
Cleaning Or Replacing Your HVAC Filter
While many units use disposable air filters, some HVAC units have reusable filters that require regular cleaning. If you have a disposable filter, inspect it to make sure it’s free of dust and dirt — replace if necessary.
If you have a reusable filter, make sure to check it often and clean it as needed. Here are some tips for cleaning a reusable filter:
• Before removing the filter, use your vacuum cleaner to vacuum debris from around the filter encasement.
• After removing the filter, gently vacuum out any dust and debris inside the filter encasement. Vacuum debris from the filter as well.
• Spray out your filter with water to clean off debris; if it is especially grimy, use a drop of mild dish detergent in warm water to make a safe cleaning solution. Clean the filter with your fingers and rinse thoroughly.
• Allow your filter to dry completely before reinstalling it inside the filter encasement.
As air passes through the vents in your home, dust and other airborne debris can build up on their covers. Many homeowners find it difficult to clean in between the tightly spaced fins without removing the vent cover entirely, but here’s a tip that will help:
• To clean in between vent and return air grill fins, cover a butter knife with a cleaning cloth and run the cloth in and along the fins. For tough grime, spray your cloth lightly with cleaning solution before using.
Cleaning Your Thermostat
Your thermostat can accumulate quite a bit of dust and grime as it sits on your wall all year. Every time you manually adjust it, oils and dirt from your fingertips are transferred to the faceplate, switches, and buttons. To clean your thermostat faceplate:
• Gently remove the faceplate and wipe it down with a soft, slightly damp cloth. Allow it to dry completely before replacing it – moisture could damage the system’s sensitive components.
Most homeowners do not realize that dust can accumulate inside the thermostat, too! When you remove the faceplate for cleaning, take the time to gently dust the sensitive components inside your thermostat. Dust can stick to contacts, causing inaccurate control and temperature readings.
• To dust the inside of your thermostat, use a soft bristled brush, such as a fine paintbrush, or a cotton swab. You can also use compressed air to clean hard-to-access areas.
Cleaning Your Air Conditioner Condenser Unit
Soon you’ll be firing up your air conditioner for the summer season – before you do so, you’ll want to make sure the exterior condenser unit is free of debris that could obstruct airflow. Before cleaning the condenser, turn off power to the unit.
• Using a shop vac or other vacuum with a soft brush attachment, gently run the brush over the condenser’s fins to loosen and remove debris that could be clogging the unit.
• This is a great time to also make sure the area around your exterior unit is clear – remove vegetation growing around the unit, and find another place to store outdoor gear.
• Don’t forget to turn the power back on once you’ve finished!
These are all HVAC cleaning steps that any homeowner can perform to help improve the performance of their HVAC system along with the cleanliness of the home. For annual cleaning of sensitive HVAC components along with preventative maintenance services, give your trusted HVAC professional a call each spring to schedule skilled maintenance services for your cooling system.