How to Clean a Window Air Conditioner Without Removing It

Window air conditioners can be a lifesaver for people who live in tall buildings or in homes that don’t have good airflow from a central HVAC unit. You may also need extra cool air to keep your home comfortable. However, like anything, it also needs cleaning. This unit is easier to clean and maintain than standard household HVAC equipment. It’s a heavy unit so Can you clean a window air conditioner without taking it apart? YES! Let’s see why this is important, find the manuals, the supplies you will need, the steps to clean the unit without taking it out of the window, the benefits of cleaning it, when need repair or replacement and other things to consider. Finally, when to contact a professional for help.

Why is this important?


As with all appliances, window air conditioners need cleaning and maintenance. Now, if you live in a cold place, this is not something you want to do in the middle of winter. Adding it to your spring cleanup is a good idea so it can be winter-ready.

Refer to the user manual

If you can find the manual for your window air conditioner, that would be great! If not, Google the name and model of the device and add in the “user manual” and you should be able to find it as a pdf online. It is important to have a manual for reference, as every unit is different.

Supplies needed to clean the Window Air Conditioner without taking it off

  • You can fill a nearby bucket or sink with warm soapy water
  • Vacuum cleaner with soft brush attachment
  • Soft brush or comb that you do not use
  • Spray bottle with warm water and 2 drops of dish detergent
  • The fabric may be dirty
  • Notice below the indoor unit
  • A screwdriver
  • Where to put screws/small parts so you don’t lose them
  • Gloves to protect hands from sharp fins
  • Fin comb in case the coils need to be straightened
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    Steps to clean window air conditioners without removing them

    Steps to clean window air conditioner without removing it

    3. Remove the Air Conditioner Cover

    You can use a screwdriver to remove the cover. This will allow you to see the condensate drain hose and other removable parts like the drain tray. You can soak them in warm soapy water to clean them. It is important to clean the drain pan to Mold doesn’t start growing from the water sitting in the pan.Vacuum and spray the internal components to clean the Window Air Conditioner without taking it apart

    4. Vacuum and spray the internal components to clean the window air conditioner without removing it

    To clean the window air conditioner without removing it, use the vacuum cleaner that comes with a soft brush and carefully vacuum away dust balls or other things you see in the unit. Then, mix together the water and two drops of dishwashing liquid, next, spray the inside of the machine and wipe these areas clean. Make sure you also pay attention to the fins. Alternatively, you can use fin comb to clean the fin areas and make sure they are straight.

    5. Clean the condenser coils

    The back of the device has a cover that you can also remove. This coating protects the device from the elements but requires cleaning. Underneath the cover are the condenser coils. Spraying with a mixture of water and detergent can clean them. This will allow the dirt to fly away. Some people use a hose to spray but it’s better to use detergent for more effective cleaning. After you do that, let the area dry.

    6. Reassemble the Air Conditioner

    When everything dry on the inside, put the parts back. If you’re not sure how it all comes together, consult your owner’s manual. Making sure everything inside is dry is important to prevent mold growth.

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    Benefits of Cleaning the Window Air Conditioner

    1. The air filter is clean and in good working order

    Dirty air filters cause breathing problems and can also clog and cause lack of airflow. Hence, leading to freezing coil A clean air filter allows the unit to run longer, providing cleaner indoor air, and the unit will operate more quietly without having to work as hard. air filter Catches airborne particles and fits most window units.

    2. Fins allow air to pass through

    After cleaning, use the fin comb mentioned above and keep the cooling fins as straight as possible.Find mold problems early

    3. Find mold problems early

    Did water leak from the unit onto the carpet and cause mold formed? You will want to take care of this right away! Check the manual to see why it is leaking and then call a professional if you need help. Leaking water will cause health problems due to mold formation.

    When to repair or replace?

    If you’re the first to name an HVAC professional or older air conditioning equipment (8 to 10 years), it may be time to consider buy a new one. They cost between $150 and $1000 depending on the model and size.

    Other things to consider

    1. If possible, place the window in the shade so that it does not rust faster2. Take the device out of the window if there is an extended period of time that you will not use it. This will then allow it to escape the weather elements and also last longer.Other things to consider3. Is the room cool enough with a fan that you install or pay an electrician to install a ceiling fan? Ceiling fan or fan with that plugin Save energy can run longer and save costs! You can set a ceiling fan so that the blades run in the opposite direction in winter and push warm air from the ceiling back to the floor. This will also allow you to see if there are draft in the house .4. If you decide that it’s too cumbersome to clean while it’s in the window and want to take the whole unit out to clean it, you can! Try it and see here to see how to do that or call a professional.

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    When to call a specialist?

    You can always call a professional if you have a problem with your window air conditioner. Just be aware that a service call will cost slightly less than a new unit, depending on the model and size you have. However, servicing it regularly can help you prolong the life of your equipment.


    Window air conditioners are great when it comes to keeping a cooler room that might be located in a warmer part of the house. However, like all equipment, maintenance is important. If you are having problems with your window air conditioner or have questions and need assistance, please contact we or leave a reply below.

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    Posts “How to Clean a Window Air Conditioner Without Removing It” posted by on 2021-08-13 13:06:10. Thank you for reading the article at

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