3 Indications the AC Evaporator Coil Needs Cleaning

Is Professional Evaporator Coil Cleaning Really Necessary?

The evaporator coil is essential to the home's air conditioning system. It works to help cool the home by absorbing heat from inside the home, which is then transferred outside via the condenser coil. Without a well-functioning evaporator coil, an air conditioner's efficiency can drop by up to 25%. And when efficiency drops, the home's cooling cost rises, making for higher energy bills. Not only that, but it can stress other system components, causing premature wear and tear. Luckily, there are three signs that the evaporator coil is dirty. Homeowners who watch for these signs can stay on top of evaporator coil cleaning, helping ensure proper and efficient air conditioner function.  

Inefficient Cooling

hotThe first sign homeowners should look out for is inefficient cooling. Unfortunately, this is one of the harder signs to locate quickly. Often, homeowners only find out that their system is losing efficiency when they get their energy bill and realize they're spending more than they should. 

When the evaporator coil gets dirty, the grime that builds on the AC coils makes it harder for them to absorb heat. This is because the dirt creates a barrier between the coils and the warm air that's moved through the system. So those homeowners who notice their air conditioner blowing but not cooling well could have a dirty evaporator coil. 

Icy Buildup

frostWhile a lack of efficiency is one of the first signs of a dirty evaporator coil, the frost buildup on the coils often follows soon after. And this can end up preventing the air conditioner from cooling altogether. Frost forms on a dirty air conditioner because the dirt prevents the refrigerant inside the coil from warming properly, which is essential for proper operation. And when the refrigerant doesn't warm past freezing, it can cause ice to form on the coils. Once ice forms, the coil can no longer function to absorb heat, causing the air conditioner to fail. 

AC Runs for a Long Time

Whether it's a frozen evaporator coil or just dirt on it, the result is the same: an air conditioner that runs for a long time but doesn't do much to cool the home. If the dirt on the coil isn't too bad, it could simply cause the air conditioner to run longer to get to the temperature set at the thermostat. But if the buildup is bad, it could prevent the system from getting down to temperature, causing it to keep running for longer cycles. 

Air conditioners are not designed for near-continuous running. They need to cycle on and off while operating efficiently. A constantly running air conditioner drains electricity and causes wear and tear on all the components, eventually leading to a serious breakdown or malfunction. 

Homeowners who notice these signs should consult a professional HVAC company for evaporator coil cleaning to ensure their system functions properly and efficiently.


About Chris Wilson Plumbing & Heating Repairs Inc

Chris Wilson Plumbing & Heating Repairs Inc. is a family-owned and operated business serving Seaside, CA, since 1991. They provide 24-hour emergency service performed by respectful technicians. They also offer upfront pricing for no-surprise AC service on every job. 

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