If you’re like most people, you probably don’t think about your air conditioner until it’s too late. And by then, it’s usually so hot and sticky inside that you’re ready to do just about anything to make it stop.
But before you break down and spend hundreds of dollars on a new one, try cleaning the coils. It’s a simple process that can be done with an AC coil cleaner, and it could extend the life of your AC unit.
If you’re not sure how to clean the coils, don’t worry. We’ve got you covered. In this article, we’ll show you the best cleaner for AC coils and the easiest way to clean your evaporator or condenser coils, so you can keep your unit running smoothly for years to come.
Why Do You Need to Keep the AC Coil Clean?
If debris and dirt build up on the AC coils, it can significantly reduce the efficiency of your air conditioner.
The coils are responsible for transferring heat from the indoors to the outdoors, so if they’re dirty, it takes longer for the heat to be dissipated. This results in your air conditioner working harder and using more energy, which can end up costing you more money on your energy bills.
Not only that, but a dirty AC coil can also cause the unit to break down more frequently, which can be very costly to repair.
So, it’s important to keep the AC coils clean in order to maintain the efficiency of your air conditioner and avoid costly repairs.
You can clean the coils yourself or hire a professional to do it for you. Either way, it’s important to do it regularly in order to keep your air conditioner running smoothly.
It is recommended that you clean your coils about once a year, but if you live in an area with high humidity or dust storms, then more frequent cleaning may be necessary.
Read Also: Best AC Fin Combs for Coil Repair
Types of AC Coil Cleaners
There are a few different types of AC coil cleaners on the market, each designed for a specific type of coils. Here is a rundown of the most common types of coil cleaners:
- Alkaline coil cleaners are the most popular type of coil cleaners and are safe to use on most types of coils. They are designed to break down dirt, grime, and other build-ups on coils without damaging the surface.
- Acidic coil cleaners are more aggressive and should only be used on copper or aluminum coils. They can eat away at the surface of these metals, so it is important to be careful when using them.
- Foaming cleaners are designed to create a thick foam that clings to coils and helps to loosen dirt and grime. These cleaners typically come in aerosol cans and are applied by spraying the foam directly onto the coils. Foaming AC coil cleaners are generally safe to use and will not damage coils.
When choosing a coil cleaner, it is important to select one that is designed for the type of coils you have. Using the wrong type of cleaner can damage your coils and shorten their lifespan.
List of the 6 Best Cleaners for AC Coils
#1 Nu-Calgon Evap Foam No Rinse Coil Cleaner
The Nu-Calgon Evap Foam is a self-rinsing coil cleaner that helps to dissolve oils, dirt, and other contaminants from the evaporator coil. This cleaner also helps to get rid of the damp moldy smell from your AC unit.
This heavy-duty coil cleaner is biodegradable and non-corrosive. It’s also safe to use on all types of coils and is ideal for use in residential and commercial air conditioning units.
It comes in an 18-ounce aerosol can and is easy to use. Simply spray the cleaner on the coil and allow it to dry. There is no need to rinse the coil after cleaning.
Why we love it:
- Cleans coils thoroughly and quickly, without the need to rinse
- Safe for use on metals and other materials
#2 Frost King Air Conditioner Foaming Cleaner
Frost King offers a variety of coil cleaners to suit your needs, and the ACF19 Foam Coil Cleaner is one of their best. This cleaner is designed for use on both condenser and evaporator coils, and it can be used on all types of air conditioners, whether window air conditioners or central HVAC units.
It comes in a convenient 19-ounce can, and it can be sprayed directly onto the coils. The foam clings to the coils and penetrates deep into crevices to remove dirt, dust, and grime. It also contains a rust inhibitor to protect your coils from corrosion.
Some people say that you should wet or rinse the coils first before using this AC cleaner, but we have found it’s not necessary. Just spray on the cleaner and let it sit for a few minutes. Then rinse it off with water if desired.
Why we love it:
- The foam formula is safe for use on all types of coils, including aluminum, copper, and stainless steel
- The coil cleaner is also great for cleaning fan blades, reusable air filters, refrigerators, and more
#3 ComStar Evaporator Coil Cleaner
The ComStar Evaporator Cleaner is a non-toxic, self-rinsing coil cleaner that’s to remove dirt, dust, and other debris from your coils. It has a concentrated formula, so you only need to use a small amount to clean your coils.
To use ComStar Evaporator Coil Cleaner, simply add it to a gallon of water and spray it onto the coils. Let it sit for about 10 minutes, then rinse it off with clean water (optional). You can also use a brush to scrub the coils if they’re particularly dirty.
ComStar Evaporator Coil Cleaner is an affordable way to keep your air conditioner’s coils clean and working efficiently. It’s also safe for use on aluminum and copper, so you don’t have to worry about damage.
Why we love it:
- It is a non-toxic, neutral pH cleaner that is safe for both you and your AC unit
- It is also very affordable, so you can save money while still keeping your AC unit in top shape
#4 Nu-Calgon Nu-Brite Condenser Coil Cleaner
The Nu-Calgon Nu-Brite Condenser Coil Cleaner is a non-acid, alkaline-based product that’s formulated with the best available foaming detergents to quickly penetrate and dissolve greasy dirt and grime build-up. Not only does it foam like acids, but it also brightens as well.
This cleaner is also biodegradable and has a fresh citrus scent, so you can feel good about using it. What’s more, Nu-Brite is safer than acids – making it ideal for use in federally inspected meat and poultry establishments.
Nu-Calgon Nu-Brite is a concentrated cleaner that you need to mix it with water first and then spray it on the dirt. After that, wait a few minutes and rinse it with clean water. Remember that Nu-Calgon is not recommended for indoor use or on evaporator coils.
Why we love it:
- Very effective on stained areas
- Also works on the car radiator
- It needs to be diluted with water, so it is a very economical choice
#5 WEB Foam Coil Cleaner
The WEB Foam Coil Cleaner has a biodegradable, no fume formula and can be held upside down without any issues. The 360 spray nozzle makes it easy to remove soil and buildup from your condenser and evaporator coils.
This cleaner is safe and compatible with aluminum coils. It is also effective in removing mold growth from AC unit coils.
When you clean your coils with WEB Coil Cleaner on a monthly basis, you help your system operate more efficiently and save energy. This HVAC coil cleaner is easy to use. You just need to spray it on the coils and then rinse it off.
Why we love it:
- A professional grade solvent that is biodegradable
- Easy to use, fast application
#6 Arm & Hammer AC Coil Cleaner Spray
The Arm & Hammer Aerosol Spray is a heavy-duty cleaner that quickly and efficiently cleans your HVAC coils. It also removes unpleasant odors, leaving your window AC unit or other HVAC systems with a fresh smell and improved indoor air quality.
Best of all, it’s eco-friendly, meeting and exceeding the industry’s standard for “green” products. And because it’s self-rinsing, you don’t even need to hose it off afterwards – just spray and go.
Why we love it:
- Safe for the environment
- Instantly removes foul odors from AC units
Cleaning the coils on your AC unit is an important task that too many people neglect. Not only can it help to keep your unit running smoothly, but it can also extend the life of your AC by years.
There are a number of different cleaners that you can use to clean your AC coils, and we’ve listed some of our favorites here. So don’t wait until your unit breaks down to give it the attention it deserves — start keeping those coils clean today!