Servicing your car regularly is a necessity since it determines the functionality and longevity of your car. While, it is important to have this done professionally as often as you can, there are certain things that you can do on your own that are just as effective, and will not cost you as much. One such thing is servicing your car air conditioner.
Without regular servicing, car air conditioners tend to give off certain smells and may even cease to function altogether. For instance, air filters inside the car air conditioner can collect dust, dirt, and all sorts of pollutants from within and outside the car, much like the filters in the home AC system. If these filters are not cleaned, or replaced when they age, the air conditioner will give off a strange smell. Sometimes you may even have a sweet smell emanating from the system as a result of leaking antifreeze liquid that is supposed to keep your car AC working even through winter.
Doing it yourself
So to avoid these and other issues with your car AC, here are some things you can do to service your own air conditioner.
- Clean the car air vents
Given the structure of the air vent, and the fact that removing the grille is usually not possible, you can only go so far when you try to clean it. However, you can work around this using a cotton swab soaked in an interior car cleaning liquid of your choice.
Make sure to go through all the vents and to use a scentless car cleaner to keep your car from having that scent for a long while to come. Also, don't forget to clean the lower vents as well.
- Clean the car air filter
If you have never done this before, you may need your car manual to help you locate the air filters. Once that is done, you can either vacuum it or run it through a soapy solution before drying it.
Note that either method has its potential risks; for instance, washing with soap requires you to ensure that the filter is absolutely dry before putting it back since a wet filter can damage your engine. Alternatively, vacuuming may not clear out all the contaminants so you may have to clean your filters more frequently.
However you choose to clean your filters, remember to clean the canister that holds the filter, using a cloth or paper towel, before putting it back in. You can also spray disinfectant on your air filters to get rid of any bacteria or mould that may grow there, as they can also cause the car AC to give off an unpleasant smell.
- Clean the condenser fan and coils
The fan tends to be dusty after a while so you can go over it using a brush. You also need to oil the fan motor which you should be careful to do using the oil specified by the manufacturer.
Condenser coils can be cleaned using water. Just spray water on the unit inside after removing the coil guard. This way, you will remove debris that accumulated inside the fins. You can also clean and straighten the combs using the fin comb.
With these three issues handled, your car AC should be in excellent working condition for longer and you won't have spent too much money in the process.