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How to Store a Portable Air Conditioner

Picture - How to Store a Portable Air Conditioner

Storing a portable air conditioner when not in use is an important part of routine maintenance. Although the process is very similar to preparing a window air conditioner for storage, there are a few, key differences. If you’re looking for step-by-step instructions, this article explains how to store a portable air conditioner so you can improve its performance and extend its life.

Supplies

Portable AC Storage Instructions

Power Down the Unit

  • Step 1. Turn the unit off - Use the power switch to turn the unit off.
  • Step 2. Unplug the air conditioner - Disconnect the power cord from the outlet to avoid electrical hazards.
  • Step 3. Uninstall the ventilation hose - Remove the ventilation hose from the window and unfasten it from the back of the unit. Refer to your owner’s manual for specific instructions.
  • Step 4. Compress the ventilation hose - To make storing the ventilation hose easier, fold it inwards to reduce its size and then bind it with tape to keep it compressed.
  • Step 5. Take out the window / door vent - Uninstall the window / door vent to which the hose was attached, along with any tape, foam, screws or other sealings. For more specific directions, reverse the installation instructions in your owner’s manual.
  • Step 6. Gather the accessories - Place the unfastened screws and any sealing materials into plastic bags for safe storage.

Drain the Air Conditioner

  • Step 1. Cover back panel with plastic - To prevent dirty condensate water from entering the unit when draining the tank, cover the vents on the back panel with plastic wrap. If necessary, use tape to hold the plastic in place.
  • Step 2. Place a bucket / pan behind the unit - Put a small bucket or shallow pan under the drain plugs in back of the unit in order to collect the condensate.
  • Step 3. Drain the upper plug - Once the bucket or pan is in place, drain the upper tank by unscrewing the plug and letting the condensate water pour out. Tilting the unit backwards slightly can help drain the tank.
  • Step 4. Drain the lower plug - Similarly, drain the lower tank by unscrewing the plug and letting the water run out. Once again, tilting the unit slightly will allow the force of gravity to help drain the unit.
  • Step 5. Plug the drains - After emptying the tank, screw the tops back onto the drain plugs.
  • Step 6. Remove the plastic - Remember to remove the plastic wrap protecting the back panel.
  • Step 7. Clean the exterior (if necessary) - If any condensate water splashed onto the unit, clean the exterior with warm, soapy water and then rinse with clean water before drying with a soft cloth.

Clean the Filter, Coils & Exterior

  • Step 1. Locate the filter and coils - Identify if the filter and coils are behind the front or back panel. If you’re unsure, refer to the diagrams in your user’s manual.
  • Step 2. Remove the panel - In order to access the filter and coils, use a screwdriver to loosen the screws holding the panel. If the panel isn’t mounted to the unit with screws, look in the owner’s manuals for instructions on how to take it off the unit.
  • Step 3. Vacuum the coils - Use a small vacuum to remove dust and dirt from the coils. Be gentle so as not to damage the coils.
  • Step 4. Apply coil cleaner - Put on safety goggles and gloves and then spray the coils with coil cleaner. Let the cleaner sit for as long as indicated on the bottle before proceeding to the next step in the cleaning procedure.
  • Step 5. Clean the filter - Pull out the filter and use a vacuum or brush to remove any dust. After dusting the filter, wash it with warm, soapy water and a soft cloth. Then, rinse the filter with clean water. Be sure to dry the filter thoroughly before reinstalling.
  • Step 6. Wipe down the exterior - Wash the exterior, including the vents, with warm water and a soft cloth, then dry the exterior.
  • Step 7. Reassemble the unit - Once everything is clean and dry, reassemble the portable air conditioning unit.

Store the Portable Air Conditioner

  • Step 1. Choose a location - It’s best to store a portable air conditioner in a dry environment where the temperature won’t go below freezing. Although an unheated shed or garage may be suitable, a basement, attic or utility room is likely a better option.
  • Step 2. Prepare a space - Clear a space for the unit so that nothing will lean against it or rest on top of it.
  • Step 3. Place in the proper position - When storing your portable unit for the winter, be sure to sit it upright. Don’t tilt it or lay it on its side since doing so can damage the compressor.
  • Step 4. Add the accessories - Be sure to store the ventilation hose, window / door vent, screws, sealings and any other accessories with the unit.
  • Step 5. Cover the unit - To prevent dust from entering the unit while in storage, place it in its original box or cover with a tarp or garbage bag.

Please contact a local authorized service agent who can help with this specific unit and all your heating and cooling needs.