Thursday, May 23, 2024

How To Clean Mold From Window Air Conditioner Unit

Toggle On The Humidity Control

How to Clean a Dirty Moldy Window Air Conditioner

Humidity is a significant driver of mold growth- if the humidity in the room is high, mold growth will be accelerated.

To prevent a moldy mess, youll need to keep the humidity level in check. Not every window AC unit comes with a humidity control, but many of them do.

Look at your AC unit closely and see if there is a humidity setting. If your AC is equipped with humidity control, turn it on and set the humidity level to 30-50%.

This humidity level is perfect, as it will keep you comfortable without encouraging mold growth.

If you havent yet bought an AC unit, make sure that you purchase a model that allows you to control the humidity setting.

How To Eliminate Mold From Air Conditioner Ducts And Other Parts

Here, we provide step by step mold removal instructions.

Here’s your supply list to eliminate AC mold:

Safety first – Face mask and latex or nitrile gloves. You may want to slip leather gloves on the nitrile gloves when dusting the AC’s fins or interior. There are clear elements to avoid.

Window AC Cleaning Agents – Antibacterial soap for the filter, Tilex, or another similar cleaner, lists its label that it removes mold. If you do not have an antibacterial dish cleaner, the Tilex can work on the filter. We favor Tilex since it’s specially formed to kill and eliminate mold and mildew.

Cleaning Tools & Provides – Nylon washes brush, cloth rag or paper towel, vacuum cleaner using a crevice tool, an upholstery brush.

Hand tools – Screwdriver set.

How To Prevent Mold In Air Conditioners From Forming

The above advice is really effective at ridding your air conditioner of harmful mold spores and keeping the family home safe.

Yet, none of this will be needed if you prevent the air conditioning unit from harboring mold in the first place.

There are different ways that you can prevent mold growth in an air conditioning unit â and here are the best:

  • Check the unit regularly â it is easy to let little jobs like these fall down the to-do list but try and make more of an effort to check the unit consistently. Sometimes you will encounter a musty smell near the unit, meaning it likely has a build-up of mold.
  • Services and maintenanceâ Another way of keeping up with checks is by booking in regular air conditioning services with a professional company, likely the one you bought the unit from who could provide additional advice.
  • Clean it! â the most obvious answer to preventing mold is not just checking it but cleaning it too. Make sure you dry the unit after cleaning it to prevent moisture from accumulating that can lead to mold. You may also need to clean or replace filters frequently.
  • Look at the air intakes â these pull air in and could be blocked with bird droppings or other obstacles. Make sure this isnât the case.

Overall, give your air conditioning unit the attention it deserves to prevent mold from forming, and get rid of it quickly if it does!

About the Author Jamie

Also Check: How To Clean Mold From Boat Seats

How Mold Grows In Air Conditioners

Mold spores are everywhere. Unfortunately, it is impossible to get rid of all the mold spores in your house, and even if you did, more would come in every time you opened a door or window. When spores grow into mold, more spores are released, and these higher concentrations of spores are what cause the health problems associated with mold. Thus, the key is to prevent the mold from growing in the first place.

Mold needs two things in order to grow: moisture and an organic food source. Moisture can come from high humidity, or a leak or spill that is not cleaned up properly. Condenser and evaporator coils are the main contributors to condensation, and therefore have potential for water leakage if not properly drained. The food source can be the surface the mold is growing on, like wood or carpet, or organic particles found in dust, if there is enough of it.

Under most circumstances, air conditioners and HVAC ducts are not hospitable places for mold to grow. Sheet metal ducts and styrofoam channels inside window units do not offer mold a food source. However, dust often collects in these places, which can allow mold to grow.

Cleaning The Filter Monthly

How to Prevent Mold in Window Air Conditioner
  • 1Remove the units front panel to access the filter. Turn the unit off and disconnect the power cord before removing the front panel. Your air conditioners front panel is secured with screws or tabs. Remove the panel, locate the filter, and pull it out of its slot.XResearch source
  • Depending on your model, youll either pull the filter up or slide it down out of its slot. Check your manual for specific information about how to remove your front panel and filter.XResearch source
  • 2Run water through the filter. Rinse the filter under running warm water. Use a vacuum hose attachment to clean the filter if its caked with dirt or grime.XResearch source
  • Its best to clean your filter at least once a month. Clean it more often if you live in a dusty environment or have pets.XTrustworthy SourceU.S. Department of EnergyOfficial site for the U.S. Department of Energy, which provides resources related to energy safety, conservation, and efficiencyGo to source
  • Replace your air filter at least every 3 months.XExpert Source
  • Also Check: How To Clean Mold From Boat Seats

    Mold On Window Air Conditioner Styrofoam And Other Places

    Sometimes you are aware there is black mold in window ACs due to the musty, tell-tale odor when you turn it on, or it has been running for a while.

    People allergic to mold sometimes know it’s nearby when allergy symptoms start – coughing, sneezing, watery eyes, an asthma attack, etc.

    Other times window AC mold is evident on the filter, housing, or when you peer into the inside of the unit or the filter.

    Whatever the signs, mold should go – and there are steps you can take to prevent it.

    How To Clean Mold Out Of Window Air Conditioner 7 Easy Steps

    How to clean mold out of window air conditioner? There are several steps you need to do to clean the mold out of your window air conditioner. Read this article to find out about those steps!

    However, what is a mold? Mold is a feared issue that no one likes. However, mold exposure in the house could lead to several significant health issues and diseases.

    Mold may develop in a variety of places, including your appliance like an air conditioner. Since the air inside the air conditioner is continually moving inside the unit, it scoops mold particles that will scatter into different areas of your home.

    Moreover, mold reduces the quality of your air conditioner. Thus, the coolness produced by your AC has lessened.

    Look for indicators of mold in your air conditioners, such as a smelly odor when the air conditioner is running, repeated allergy problems, or the appearance of the mold itself outside the air conditioner.

    If you tend to see these signs and indicators, do something to solve this mold issue before it is too late.

    Also Check: How To Clean Black Mold On Shower Grout

    Remove Some Specified Parts

    Remove the body grille . On certain air conditioners, this is as simple as moving it forward and gently pressing it downwards.

    However, if you screwed the body grille as you set up your AC, you need to dismantle all the screws. Next, Disable the screen or filter from the front grille of your air conditioner.

    Mold In Air Conditioners: How To Clean And Prevent Growth

    Taking Apart an Frigidair Window Unit to Clean Mold. Air Conditioning and Heat Pump

    Mold and mold spores can reduce the air quality in your home, especially if someone in your household has a mold allergy. Mold growing in the bathroom or basement is bad enough, but what if mold grows in your air conditioner or inside the ducts of your HVAC system? We will explain how mold might form in a window-unit air conditioner or in ductwork, how to prevent it, and what to do if you do find mold in your air conditioner.

    Read Also: How To Clean Mold From Leather

    Prevent Future Mold Growth

    There are several things you can do to stop mold from growing in the first place after you have cleaned your unit. First, you should leave your AC on at all times. Your AC does more than cool down the air. It also conditions the air by removing moisture, which also makes your home more comfortable. Leave your AC on a continuous cycle.

    Itâs also highly recommended to get on a routine maintenance schedule. You should hire a professional to inspect your unit at least once a year to make sure everything works as it should. A Day & Night Air professional will also tell you if you have the early signs of mold growing. They will conduct deep maintenance and clean your unit to prevent mold from developing initially. This will save you a lot of hassle. Although you are certainly capable of cleaning a unit on your own, it helps to have a professional do it to stop the problem from coming back.

    Additionally, you need to identify and stop any leaks as soon as they form. Mold requires moisture to develop, so a leak in the system will lead to mold growth quickly. Mold also needs stale air, so if you turn off your AC often, then mold has everything it needs to thrive.

    What Is Air Conditioner Mold

    Yes, I get that youre having problems with some nasty stuff that looks like mold within your AC. But what really is mold?

    Im sure youd want to know. After all, you wouldnt want it to keep coming back, right?

    So heres a little overview of what mold is.

    First of all, a mold is a fungus. Its furry. And it grows when these three conditions are present together: an organic substrate, moisture, and warmth.

    So mold loves places that are dark and damp. Now that sounds like the inside of your air conditioning unit!

    This photo of Comfort Inn Ship Creek is courtesy of TripAdvisor

    While there are many types of molds, they all tend to favor damp and humid spaces. Some thrive in air vents and ducts. And many of them are toxic.

    Sounds scary, right?

    Yes, and here are the other things to be worried about mold growths.

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    How Do You Know If There Is Mold In Window Air Conditioner Units

    You might be able to see mold on the unit itself or on the filter if you remove and examine it. You might smell a musty odor characteristic of mold when the air conditioner is turned on. You might also be experiencing mold-related health problems like coughing, sneezing and respiratory problems. If you’re not sure whether or not there is mold in your air conditioner, you can have a mold remediation professional come in and inspect it. They will also inspect the wall around the unit in case there was a leak.

    Cleaning Without Removing A Window Air Conditioner

    Is this mold in my window ac? If so, what should I do ...

    It can be hard to clean a window air conditioner without disconnecting it from the wall as you need a considerable amount of water. However, it is possible with a little more effort.

    Before starting the job, you should put some buckets under your AC. Then, take off the screws of the frontal case or mask and take out the filter.

    Afterward, you need to spray the device and wipe it with the dry cloth at the same time. Repeat the process until you see the frontal and inner parts are entirely clean. Dont forget to spray the filter and rinse it, as well. It is an excellent idea to do so in your bath or sink.

    The next step is to go outside and spray the AC without removing the cover. Do it wherever you see the hole. Leave the agent and water to soak all the parts of the device for approximately 15 minutes.

    Then rinse the device with water from the hose or bucket. Make sure not to pour a large amount of water immediately. It is better to use less water over a more extended period. While doing so, you will see the dirt comes from the bottom holes of the outside unit.

    You will know a window air conditioner is clean once the water coming out becomes clean. If needed, you can repeat the soaking part, but always rinse the detergent or bleach afterward.

    Once you have finished with the cleaning, you should leave all the parts to dry for at least 2 to 4 hours. After putting back all the pieces together, your seasonal cleaning is finished.

    Read Also: How To Clean Black Mold On Shower Grout

    How To Prevent Mold In Window Air Conditioners

    Now that the black mold in the air conditioner is gone, keep it away with these tips to deprive it of food and water!

    1). Remove Dust: Mold feeds on dust and dirt. If you dust or vacuum away dust, dirt, pollen and other organic materials, you can starve any mold that begins growing. Using compressed air to blow dust out the back of the AC might help too. Some people cover the inside part of the AC with a towel when not in use to prevent it from getting dusty.

    2). Use Fan Mode to Dry the Interior of the AC: Most window air conditioners have a Fan setting. The compressor wont come on to remove heat, but the fan will blow. After youve cooled the room, turn on Fan Mode.

    This will dry out the interior of the air conditioner and as the EPA reminds us, moisture control is the key to mold control.

    3). Clean your Window AC Once or Twice During the Cooling Season: If you live in a hot climate, especially one that is humid too, clean your AC at least twice during the cooling season. Inspect it monthly for mold.

    If your AC doesnt get heavy use, then cleaning it once during the season should be sufficient unless you or someone in your household is especially sensitive to mold.

    How To Remove Mold From Air Conditioner

    We dont recommend that homeowners attempt to clean a central air unit or ventilation . If, on an inspection of a small self-contained unit, you have decided to tackle it yourself, heres what youll need to do:

  • Wear goggles, a face mask and gloves to avoid exposure
  • Move the unit to a space where you can clean it without cross-contaminating your house
  • Open the unit and remove the filter
  • If the filter is disposable, throw it out
  • If the filter is not disposable:
  • remove all debris and visible mold
  • fully submerge the filter in a mix of 1 part bleach to 10 parts water
  • let soak for at least 10 minutes
  • rinse
  • air dry
  • Use a wet/dry vac to remove all debris from the interior of the unit
  • Deep clean all affected surfaces using a mixture of 1 parts bleach to 10 parts water, adding a spoonful of detergent for extra penetration.
  • Allow at least 10 minutes for the bleach to kill off any last remnants of mold
  • Hose or otherwise rinse off the unit, but avoid soaking the electrical components
  • Allow to dry
  • Reinstall the filter, reassemble and reinstall
  • If youre intimidated by the above work, remember: hiring a mold removal expert is always a safe and sure-fire way of getting mold eradicated.

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    Window Unit Cleaning Step By Step Guide

    1).First, disconnect the window units power source, including if it is wired directly to the home. If this is the case, disconnect or turn off the main breaker in the circuit box. For the next important step, you will need either the owners manual or the number to call the manufacturer.

    2).Check the owners manual to see how to discharge the Capacitor correctly. The Capacitor is the device that keeps an extra charge to kick-start the motor. This step in necessary because it will make sure there are no electrical charges left on it before you start the cleaning process.

    3).Next, clean the outside cover by wiping it down with a wet cloth. Be sure to use a good dirt and grim cleaner so that when you open the cover no loose particles fall inside.

    4). Remove the cover from the front of it by either unsnapping it with your hands or removing the screws/plastic hooks that hold the cover in place. Use caution while handling the metal pieces, the edges can be sharp.

    5). If the filter to your unit is reusable, remove it and clean it with hot, soapy water until it is nice and clean. To remove all the dust and particle buildup, use a soft brush and gently remove everything. Set the filter in an area where it can dry thoroughly before you put in back the A/C. Putting a damp filter back in will only attract more dirt and mold.

    6). If it has a disposable filter, manufacturers recommend changing it monthly to help keep mold at bay.

    Turn Off Your Ac To Prevent Further Spreading

    How to Clean A Window Air Conditioner (AC unit)The Easy Way Without Removing From Wall The Right Way

    Before cleaning your AC, you should first shut off the system. This will prevent mold spores from further circulating around your house. You need to unplug the system and visually inspect the unit to see if you have a mold problem. This will require you to grab a flashlight because mold may be further down the system. You need to be vigilant of the signs of mold, which can include streaks of green, black or brown stains. Occasionally, these stains will appear fuzzy. You also need to watch out for the development of mildew, which takes the form of white and powdery gray stains.

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