How to Fix (and Prevent) a Dirty Ductless Problem
A ductless mini split is a great home comfort option for providing both the heating AND cooling you need. They are convenient modern systems that provide a great way to heat and cool spaces with temperature problems, such as a home addition, an office, or an apartment. But you need to be aware of how mold can grow in a mini split unit.
They are excellent HVAC units, especially when there is no existing ductwork and installing new ducts is not feasible.
Just as a traditional air conditioner needs regular maintenance, a ductless system requires maintenance. And when those necessary little maintenance tasks aren’t handled, problems can happen.
Tiger Heating & Air are ductless mini-split systems installers here in the Corpus Christi area. We also provide repair and maintenance services for these units. While these units do not require much maintenance, some cleaning and tune-ups are required.
One common problem is with mold growing inside a mini split. A dirty unit, especially one with mold, can hurt the air quality inside your home.
Do You Have Mold in Your Mini Split?
Finding that you have mold in your ductless mini split unit can be rather unpleasant. Unfortunately, this is a relatively common issue. Ductless mini split systems can be filled with dirt, debris, and mold if regular maintenance is ignored or not being operated properly.
When mold grows inside a unit, it can expand rather quickly. A mini split with mold growing inside means it is putting mold spores out into the air you breathe. As you can imagine, that creates problems for your home and your family’s health.
4 signs of a Mold Problem
While opening up your mini split may be the best way to identify whether or not it has mold, there are other signs you may notice in your home that could indicate you have this problem.
- You smell a foul odor, perhaps like a dirty sock or something cheesy
- There are black or odd-colored splotches on the mini-split unit (seen when you lift the cover on the air handler)
- You find standing water or a lot of moisture below your ductless unit
- You are suffering from increased respiratory problems or are having more allergy symptoms inside your home
DIY: Cleaning Mold from Mini Split
Cleaning a mini split is pretty easy! It’s a relatively simple process that just about any homeowner can do themselves.
- Turn your system off
- Flip up the top cover
- Remove the 2 filters that are right at the top by pulling them out
- Clean filters by rinsing them off with water
- Let filters completely dry (wait at least 20 minutes)
- Reinsert filters into mini split and put the cover back on
Special Note: Some of these ductless units include an additional antimicrobial & anti-allergy filter. If you have this, remove it before washing the other filters. This special filter cannot be cleaned.
Following these basic steps, you can clean out dust, debris, and a small amount of mold. If your mini split has a significant mold problem, this simple cleaning may not be enough. If you have a great deal of mold in your mini split (or mold is in parts you cannot reach and remove), call for professional maintenance.
Preventing Mold from Growing
The best way to keep mold from developing and growing is simply by keeping it always turned on.
You do NOT want to be turning your mini-split unit on and off. It should remain on at all times, even when you don’t need it. Unlike a traditional air conditioning system, mini splits do not cycle on and off.
When they are not needed to cool the air, they will run in a low-power mode. It is important to keep a mini split turned on because it works to do more than just maintain the desired temperature. These units are also working to drain moisture. So, when you turn the unit off, that moisture can stay in the system and build up. And that’s where you can get a mold problem.
For ductless mini split system installment, repair, or maintenance in and around Corpus Christi, call the HVAC experts at Tiger Heating & Air at (361) 852-4450.