Self-cleaning car air conditioner - how to do it effectively?


If you do not regularly clean the air conditioner, after some time you will definitely feel a characteristic unpleasant smell from the ventilation ducts. Under the influence of moisture from the air, which settles in the ventilation and on the evaporator, microorganisms develop. Over time, the pollution becomes so intrusive that starting the air conditioner becomes a chore. How to solve a problem?

Cleaning the car air conditioner - why is it needed?

Pollen floating in the air, as well as microbes, mold and other tiny living organisms, adversely affect the human respiratory system. Healthy people don't experience any problems at first (other than a bad smell), but for allergy sufferers, this is an almost immediate problem.

Also, it's not just about health. Removing the fungus and cleaning the air conditioning system is necessary to ensure its proper technical condition. If you keep your device clean, it will simply last longer.

Removing the fungus and ozonizing the car air conditioner - what is it?

Routine ozone fumigation can be carried out on its own, but care must be taken to ensure that the evaporator is not heavily contaminated. Use an ozonator to check. You can easily buy it online.

Why use ozone in a car interior? When it gets into the evaporator, it will be able to destroy the microbes. Ozone is a completely natural and highly oxidizing gas, so it quickly eliminates mold and free radicals without harming human health.

How to defrost a car air conditioner yourself?

It's okay if you do everything yourself. However, remember that air conditioners will have to be thoroughly cleaned and ozonation alone will not be enough if they become dirty:

  • ventilation ducts;
  • evaporator;
  • outflow of water.

What is air conditioner ozonation? Ozone from the generator is allowed into the car interior. Then turn on the internal air conditioning circuit and set the lowest possible temperature. It is important that you set the airflow to all grates so that the ozone can reach each channel.

When ozonation is not enough

Sometimes it is better to use an air conditioning spray before using the ozone generator. Why? You can directly apply the cleaner to all the nooks and crannies of the evaporator and destroy microorganisms.

However, often you have to get to the evaporator through the glove box. You won't always be able to do this at home.

Do-it-yourself air conditioner removal - step by step

Removal may cause you more or less difficulty. It depends on the complexity of the car design. If yes, then you will not be able to clean the air conditioner in every car.

However, if you have the opportunity and can make the air conditioner fungus yourself, you will be sure that it is working, and you will also save money. You have to go through several steps:

  • dismantling the storage compartment in front of the passenger seat;
  • removal of residual impurities;
  • condensate drain unblocking;
  • spraying the evaporator with a fungicide.

Removing the glove box in front of the passenger seat

This is the easiest way to get to the evaporator. It is very similar in design to a heater, so it is easy to find. The evaporator loves to trap leaves, dust, pollen and other contaminants. You must remove all of this.

To get to the evaporator, you need to unscrew the glove compartment and remove it completely. This will give you more space and better access to the vaporizer itself.

Removal of residual impurities

If you haven't looked in this place for a long time, you might be surprised how much dirt has accumulated there. Most often, these are not excessively large pollution, but causing clogging of the water drain. Cooled air causes moisture condensation and must be removed. Before fumigating the air conditioner, use a brush to brush off any solids.

Condensate drain cleaning

Here you will need a piece of flexible and at the same time rigid material (this can be, for example, a three-core electrical cable). Make sure that the water near the drain hole drains freely.

If it doesn't, try to find a hole and insert whatever you're going to use to push it through. Keep adding water until it flows freely.

Spraying the evaporator with a fungicide

The fumigator is usually supplied with a flexible long tube. Thanks to this, you won't have to fiddle with the can inside the storage compartment. Once you apply it, it will create a lather that will coat the vaporizer and kill germs.

When you are fumigating the air conditioner, keep the fan on as this will help you distribute the agent over the entire area.

Disinfection of the air conditioner in the car after thorough cleaning

After you clean the evaporator, you can proceed to ozonation, i.e. disinfection. Then you will be sure that it is clean, as are the ventilation ducts. Of course, you will find aerosolized chemicals in chain and office stores, which are supposed to also help you clean the air conditioner and get rid of bacteria. But are they really that effective?

Disinfection of the air conditioner with a foaming agent

Why can't this method be compared to thorough cleaning of all elements? If you apply the drug to the ventilation grills so that it flows freely through the evaporator into the drain, you can aggravate the situation.

Foam can collect there and stay for a long time if there is a lot of dirt inside. It also happens that it condenses and then seeps into the glove box and near the radio or where the electrical wiring runs.

Do-it-yourself car air conditioning cleaning - is it worth it?

If you are not confident in your abilities, it is better to take your car to a specialized workshop. It is clear that in such situations, you will have to pay more for the services of a mechanic than for doing it yourself, but this may be the only reasonable solution.

Keep in mind that removing mold from an air conditioner requires a lot of work and good knowledge of your car. Another issue is spending a large amount of money on an ozonator. Small devices won't pass the test, and you want one that produces about 10g of ozone per hour. It may not be practical to clean the air conditioner yourself.

How much does it cost to clean a car air conditioner in a workshop?

If you decide to visit a professional mechanical workshop, you will have to pay about 15 euros for fumigation and air conditioning leak testing. Often this is the best solution, because in the case of a service, the specialist can also:

  • make computer diagnostics;
  • replace the dryer and cabin filter;
  • check the system is working. 

If you wanted to do all these steps yourself, you would have to spend a lot of money on specialized equipment.

And if you don't use air conditioning...

Of course, you can also choose not to turn on the air conditioner. However, this does not mean that you will avoid trouble. Air conditioning must be used to remain reliable. Sounds strange, but it's true.

It will be much better if you regularly turn on the air conditioner in a closed circuit. If you stop using it, the fungus will settle there faster, which you definitely would not want to avoid.

How to take care of the air conditioner in the car?

Service and maintenance are key factors. Mechanical devices last longer with proper care. Therefore, regularly clean, ozonize and check the condition of the system and components. Clean your air conditioner at least once a year to make sure it works properly. Then you can use it longer. As you can see, there is no definite answer whether it is worth doing the air conditioner fungus on your own. A lot depends on how sophisticated the car's air conditioning system is and whether you can get to all the nooks and crannies. The fungus of the air conditioner is best left to specialists if you are not sure that you will cope with the task and will not pay off when working on your own.

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