How Much Does AC Coil Cleaning Cost?

Typical Range:

$100 - $400

Find out how much your project will cost.

Cost data is based on research by HomeAdvisor.

Updated August 5, 2022

Written by HomeAdvisor.

It’ll cost anywhere from $100 to $400 to clean your AC coils as a standalone service. For optimal system efficiency, get the coils cleaned at least annually. If you have an AC service contract, you may be able to get them cleaned quarterly. 

Condenser coil cleaning, the one located outside your home, happens during your annual AC tuneup for $75 to $200. As a separate service, duct cleaning costs $250 to $500 and covers the evaporator coil, located in the air handler inside your home.

Coils work to absorb heat into the refrigerant that flows through them, moving heat from one location to another. For air conditioning, the evaporator coil inside the air handler in your home absorbs heat. It then transfers the heat outside to the condenser coil where it releases it. The opposite process happens for heat pumps. When the coils get dusty and dirty, it reduces how well these components work.

HVAC Evaporator Coil Cleaning Cost

Evaporator coil cleaning costs $100 to $400. It costs more than cleaning the condenser coil because it’s tough to access. You’ll find it housed inside the air handler near your furnace (or inside your ductwork if you only have AC).

Cleaning in Place vs. Removal 

In rare cases, when dirt has gotten so thick that it needs a manual clean, you’ll need to remove the coil to clean it. In this case, you can expect to pay $400 to $700. You can avoid this by changing your filters monthly and having regular cleanings.

AC Condenser Coil Cleaning Cost

Cleaning the condenser coil in the outdoor unit costs $50 to $100. It’s easy to access and clean with chemicals and a standard garden hose. However, it's also easy to damage the fins and other components if you don’t know what you’re doing.

Acid Wash

Acid washing exterior condenser coils costs between $300 and $350. Where the unit has been untouched and undermaintained for a long period, debris, dirt, and mineral deposits build up, leading to a significant loss in efficiency and increasing strain and wear on the motor, which can lead to premature breakdown or failure. 

Acid washing quickly dissolves these deposits, restoring the AC coils to their former efficiency. Note, though, that acid washing releases potentially harmful fumes, so only trained AC pros should apply it to exterior coils.

Combining AC Coil Cleaning Costs with Other Services

You can save on the price to clean your coils by combining this job with other services. In most cases, you can have both coils cleaned as part of two other services:

  • Annual AC service costs$75–$200. However, you might pay a bit more to have the evaporator coil cleaned.

  • Duct cleaning costs$250–$500. It almost always covers the evaporator coil, but rarely the outdoor condenser.

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DIY vs. Hire a Professional

Yes, it's possible to clean your AC coils yourself—if you know what you're doing. And, if you keep on top of it, the job shouldn't ever be a difficult one. However, if you damage the fins or the coils themselves, you could face a hefty repair bill. 

It's worth noting, though, that having a local HVAC tech do this job is a smart move; trained pros can spot other minor issues that you can take care of quickly and inexpensively, before they become big, costly repairs.

How Do You Clean An Evaporator Coil?

If you want to clean the evaporator coil yourself, you can. But never try to remove it. Only ever clean it in place. Only a true professional should remove the coil.

  1. Turn off the power.

  2. Open the access panel and remove the filter.

  3. Get rid of larger pieces of debris with a can of compressed air.

  4. Spray the coils and drip pan liberally with a top-rated coil cleaning solution and leave it for 15 minutes to get to work.

  5. Take a spray bottle filled with water to remove any remaining debris. 

  6. Being cautious and gentle, wipe away any loose dirt and particles with a soft cloth.

  7. Use a pipe cleaner or cotton bud to clear the drip pan drain.

  8. Carefully pour a capful of bleach into the drain to inhibit mold growth.

  9. Vacuum around the panel frame to remove any lingering dust or debris particles.

  10. Put in a new AC filter, close the access panel, and switch the power back on.


How often should evaporator coils be cleaned?

You can expect to clean your evaporator coils anywhere from once a month to once a year or as needed. Get a yearly HVAC inspection or AC tuneup to know for sure. It really depends on:

  • How often you run the system

  • How often you change your filter

  • The quality of your filter

  • How clean your home is

How often should condenser coils be cleaned?

To maximize energy efficiency and AC performance, have your condenser coils cleaned at least once per year. Remember, having dirty coils can increase the AC's energy consumption by 30%, so it's worth keeping on top of the cleaning. 

How much does it cost to get your HVAC serviced?

A total annual HVAC tuneup, which covers cleaning the coils and all checking up on both the AC and furnace, runs anywhere from $150 to $500 annually.

What is the best cleaner for air conditioner coils?

The best cleaner for air conditioner coils is one specifically designed for that job. Look for a foaming cleaner for easy application and hardcore grime-busting capabilities. Heavy duty detergents that degrease and remove dirt buildup and oil are also good options. 

Alternatively, if you prefer the natural approach, you can use a simple, inexpensive mixture of 50/50 white vinegar and water.

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