At my apartment, the outside AC unit is not clean. Could the dirt come thru my ac ducts, into my apartment?

My apartment cleaned the coils of outside unit, but did not clean/fix anything else. My allergies have been acting up a lot, and the ac is not cooling my apartment very well. Thank you! 


Yes, the air filter was changed a couple of weeks ago. 

11 Answers

  • Anonymous
    3 months ago
    Favourite answer

    Unfortunately, the outside unit, called the "condensing unit", needs more than to be just sprayed off with a hose.  It needs to be cleaned (flushed) from the inside out.  That means take the cover off and soak the coil until it's wet, then flush the dirt outward by carefully spraying from the inside. 

    It's normal operation sucks air into the sides and out the top.  So you need to backflush the debris backwards.  Maybe "coil cleaner" needs to be used. 

    An HVAC technician needs to clean the coil, not a landscaper.  If it's dirty it will not work properly in its cooling duty. 

    If it's extremely old, the compressor (also in the condensing unit outside) may be worn and not compressing properly. 

    Dirt from outside can not get into your ducts inside through the refrigerant piping.

  • 3 months ago

    There is ZERO air movement between the outside condenser and the inside of the home. It is 100% IMPOSSIBLE for anything on the outside unit to get into the air in your home.

    A dirty condenser WILL cause the unit not to be efficient, but it CAN'T get dirt into the apartment. IF they actually cleaned the outside unit, and it still isn't cooling well, the problem is NOT that something else needs cleaned. It is another problem cause by the same lack of care that allowed noticeable amounts of dirt to accumulate on the unit.

  • The dirt on the outside of your AC compressor can't get into your home, so it isn't a contributor to your allergy problems.  It will, however hurt the efficiency of the unit, so you will have higher electric bills.  Allergies inside the home can be helped some by using better quality AC filter(s).  I keep an electrostatic air cleaner going 24/7 in my bedroom, and it helps quite a bit.

  • 3 months ago

    ducts are notorious dust cooty mold and whatnot particles of dead bugs,algae  dark cool areas w no exposure to sunlight are agar for all the above,ducts ought to be vacuumed carefully

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  • Droopy
    Lv 5
    3 months ago

    no The outside unit only moves refrigerant threw the lines to indoor unit no air.  If it doesn't seem to be cooling as good anymore it could be low on refrigerant.  Especially if they just cleaned the coils then didn't check the system.   

  • 3 months ago

    no. that can't happen. only the refrigerant moves between the the two units.  first step -- inspect and, if needed, replace the filter inside.  The advantage of you doing this is you can get a better quality filter to maybe remove whatever it is you're allergic to from the air. [Landlord's filter is going to be cheap, not good quality]. If that has no effect, then complain to maintenance ... the a/c needs to be checked for low refrigerant level.  You also need to help it out during these very hot days ... keep window blinds closed and try to not add heat to the place during the worst hours [3pm to 10pm]. Electric hot water heater can safely be turned off most of this time ... it'll hold enough hot water for ordinary things without adding more heat to the house. Cook early in the day if possible -- refrigerate the food for evening consumption.  and keep lights off as much as you can stand it. -- grampa

  • elhigh
    Lv 7
    3 months ago

    No.  The two units are connected by a pipe, and what passes between them is just refrigerant.  Your air in the apartment stays there.

    If it has been a long time since the coils were cleaned, sometimes cleaning can make things worse rather than better, impacting or consolidating the gunk that is on the coils.  And I can assure you that since they have done them, they will not do them again just on your say-so.  You can ask but don't expect the landlord to move on your request.  He may, if you're willing to pay for it, allow you to call in a tech to do another cleaning, however.

    But that will only affect your cooling, not your allergies.

  • Anonymous
    3 months ago

    The outside AC unit does NOT bring air to the inside of the house.  It only compresses the refrigerant to release the heat and brings it back to the inside unit as a liquid.

    Replace the air filter in the inside unit. and get the evaporator coils and the registers cleaned by a professional HVAC technician.

  • 3 months ago

    Clogged filter.                  .

  • 3 months ago

    Did you replace the filter. That might help with your allergies and make it more efficient. 

    The dust from a dirty ac can be brought into your home. 

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