How to clean a window air conditioner without removing it

How to Clean a Window Air Conditioner Without Removing it 

An essential aspect of owning anything is cleaning and maintenance to keep your machine running smoothly. It’s important to know how to clean a window air conditioner without removing it this article will explain how to accomplish that task. Cleaning is something that your air conditioner needs; cleaning is an integral part of maintenance for your air conditioner. After cleaning your air conditioner, you will come to find many noticeable benefits. It is easy to clean your window air conditioning unit with only a few steps and supplies.     


Why This is Beneficial  

How to clean a window air conditioner without removing it. A dirty window air conditioner can cause dust problems, bad air quality, and a higher energy bill. Benefits of cleaning your air conditioning unit include clean air and provide more airflow.

After you clean the cooling fins, it will allow more air to flow through more. Having cleaner air is better for fewer irritants for allergies, asthma, and any other respiratory issues. After cleaning, it will make the air smell fresher and more hygienic.

Another surprising benefit would be that your air conditioner will run quieter and use less energy to work; as a result, you will pay less for your energy bill. After cleaning your window air conditioner, you can find any mold that it may have and effectively clean it so you are not breathing mold.

One way to find mold is if, for any reason, your unit is leaking water; this can cause health problems. Keeping up with upkeep will help to keep your unit running better and last longer.  That’s why knowing how to clean a window air conditioner without removing it is a beneficial thing to know and do.   


To get started with cleaning, you will need some simple cleaning supplies to get that desired clean. The supplies include:   

  1. A bucket filled with warm soapy water    
  2. A vacuum with preferably a soft brush    
  3. Soft brush you do not need anymore    
  4. Spray bottle filled with warm water, a couple of drops of detergent, and some hydrogen peroxide   
  5. Old cloths; make sure to keep them dry   
  6. Newspaper or paper towels to put underneath the unit    
  7. Screwdriver and a place to put the screws for safekeeping     
  8. Gloves for protection    
  9. A fin comb for the coils     
  10. Your unit’s manual    

Breaking out the manual for your air conditioner is vital to understanding your specific unit and the maintenance requirements. If you don’t have your manual physically for one reason or another, you can Google the name and model, and you should find a pdf of it online.    

Steps for How to Clean a Window Air Conditioner Without Removing it

Step 1

First, you will want to unplug the unit from the wall before you begin, and this is for safety; you will be moving parts of the unit while using a spray bottle filled with water, and you don’t want to get electrocuted.  

Step 2  

Next, you will want to remove the grill of the window air conditioner and take out the filter. Before you start to clean the filter, check and see if the filter needs replacing. The amount of time before a filter needs changing depends on the filter’s size. Your specific conditioners manual should have more information on how soon you should replace the filter.

The filter size can vary with every unit 1 to 3 months for a large unit and check every 30 days for a smaller unit. Usually, the filter on a window air conditioner will not need replacing as often. If you need to replace it, refer to the manual for what size and model you should get. If you do not need to replace your filter, you can let it soak in the bucket of soapy water then let it air dry. 

Step 3   

After cleaning the filter, use your screwdriver to take the case off your air conditioner unit. Removing the case will allow you to see the condensation drain that will need to be cleaned in the warm soapy water and other removable parts. It would be best if you referred to the owner’s manual for more guidance.    

Step 4

After cleaning everything while you wait for the removable pieces to dry properly, you can get the vacuum cleaner. Being extra careful when using the vacuum out any dust or dirt in the unit with the soft brush attachment. Next, you will use a spray bottle filled with warm water, dish detergent, and hydrogen peroxide, and using a dry rag, wipe down the inside of the air conditioner. During the drying time, you can also use your fin comb to clean the fins while also making sure they are straight.  

Step 5  

Once everything is dry inside and put the parts back into the air conditioning unit, consult your manual if you need it. The best time to clean your air conditioner is at night, so it has plenty of time to dry. I cannot stress enough considering the importance of thoroughly drying everything before rerunning the air conditioner. That is how to clean a window air conditioner without removing it in only a few simple steps.    

Repair and Replacement    

You should think about replacing or repairing your window air conditioner if you are constantly calling or looking through the manual for help. Another telling sign is if your air conditioner is about 8-10 years old, you might want to replace your unit. You can replace your window air conditioner with another one or possibly thinking about a portable air conditioner

Conclusion for How to Clean a Window Air Conditioner Without Removing it 

Once you finish cleaning everything, it is beneficial to do a monthly check to see if it needs cleaning again. A monthly check will keep up the excellent health benefits when you clean your air conditioning unit. With these steps and supplies, you are one step closer to a cleaner home. 

 Written by Grace Kreber

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