With Singapore’s hot and humid weather, cooling down seems almost impossible without an aircon. After buying an aircon, if you do not want it to spoil after a few years, it is important to do aircon servicing, especially so if you use it frequently. Regular cleaning and aircon servicing can not only extend the lifespan of your air-conditioner from a decade to as long as 15 years or more, but it also ensures that the air you are breathing in is clean. It is also frustrating to have to deal with your aircon not being cold anymore, or worse, a leaking air conditioner. These problems can be easily avoided with regular aircon servicing.
Here is our aircon servicing guide to know how to service your aircon properly, how much aircon servicing costs, and which are the best aircon servicing companies to engage. If you have yet to buy an aircon for your home, I suggest you read our aircon buying guide first.
Best aircon servicing companies
I suggest getting a professional aircon service provider to do your regular aircon servicing. You can get aircon servicing by retailers, manufacturers, or independent aircon servicing companies around.
- Retailers sell a variety of brands and they have a team of aircon servicing technicians that you can hire. Examples include Gain City, Courts, Best Denki.
- Aircon manufacturers provide the air conditioners and they also do aircon servicing for their own brands. Some people feel more assured to get their aircon servicing directly from the brand.
- Independent aircon servicing companies are businesses that service a variety of aircon brands and models. Because there are many such providers around you may get more competitive pricing, especially for their packages.
While there is not much difference in which type of company you choose to do your aircon servicing, do ensure that the provider you choose is reliable and experienced.
Here are popular aircon servicing companies that you can engage:
|SoCool||Independent||SoCool provides 24/7 aircon servicing and they have experience in all brands of air conditioners. They also provide you a 90-day warranty on service workmanship.|
|Gain City||Retailer||Gain City provides aircon servicing for both residential and commercial premises. Their technicians are qualified and experienced in repair and maintanence of all brands of air conditioners.|
|Daikin||Brand||If you own Daikin air conditioners, you can get aircon servicing directly from them starting at $28 – $38 per fan coil.|
What does my aircon do?
Now let’s try to understand more about our aircon and why do we need to do regular aircon servicing. Apart from helping to cool your room, the aircon helps to maintain your room temperature at the optimum level. It also helps to remove airborne particles and reduce humidity in the room.
How does my aircon work?
An air conditioner is made up of 2 units – a compressor unit (placed outdoors) and an evaporator (indoor unit). They have coils inside them, known as condenser coils (fan coil) and evaporator coils respectively.
- To cool the air in your room, the air conditioner uses phase conversion to convert a liquid to a gas. This process absorbs heat.
- Refrigerant runs through the air conditioner unit. Warm air from the room gets sucked into the evaporator unit. When the warm air flows over the evaporator coils, the refrigerant absorbs the heat as it changes from liquid to gas.
- In order to keep cooling efficiently, the air conditioner will need to convert the refrigerant gas back to liquid again. It does that using the compressor, which puts the gas under high pressure. This creates unwanted heat, which is then evacuated to the outdoors with condenser coils and a fan.
- When the gas cools, it changes back into a liquid and the process repeats itself.
- It is an endless cycle: liquid refrigerant >> phase conversion to a gas + heat absorption, compression >> transition back to a liquid again.
Watch this video to better visualise the process of how your aircon works:
Why is aircon servicing important?
Aircon servicing is crucial in guaranteeing that your air conditioner runs optimally. An effective way to unclog the dirt and pollutants would be doing a thorough chemical wash.
As your aircon operates to cools the air and removes impurities, substances, dirt, and pollutants will get trapped in your aircon unit. Over time it will cause damage to your aircon and you may experience issues with its performance i.e. churning out hot air instead of cold, or leaking.
Regular aircon servicing will help you:
- Ensure that your aircon operates efficiently, improving cooling performance
- Saves energy and electricity
- Prolongs the lifespan of your aircon (well-serviced air conditioners can last up to 15 years or more!)
- Ensures that your aircon is circulating clean air
- Helps you catch early problems like the below ones, so it does not lead to any major breakdown and costly repairs:
Increased power consumption
The dirt that accumulates in your aircon filters will restrict its airflow and compromise its performance. Because of this, your aircon will have to apply more effort to maintain the cooling and causes a drastic increase in power consumption.
Due to the extra workload, the aircon parts are required to work harder to keep the room at the same temperature. Once it reaches its limit, the condenser motors may burn or get damaged.
Dirty condenser coils
After absorbing the indoor heat, the refrigerant will pass on to the condenser coil in the outdoor unit. A fan blows breeze onto it, making it cold and ready for another cycle. However, the accumulation of dirt or residue on the coils will reduce the effectiveness of this heat transfer. This reduces the efficiency of your aircon. The aircon unit will get hotter with each refrigerant cycle, causing damage to your aircon system.
A decrease in air quality
Your aircon also acts as an air purifier. It helps to absorb dust particles in the air to deliver not only cool air but clean air. Over time, the dirt will accumulate on the filters. On top of restricting airflow, it also facilitates bacterial growth if they are not cleaned. These bacteria and mould will reproduce and start to mix with the airflow of your system. Ironically, instead of delivering you clean air, you may inhale bacteria and mould, which will make you sick. Pollutant particles can also settle in the drainage or ducts, and cause smelly air and waterlogging problems.
How much is aircon servicing in Singapore?
The price of aircon servicing in Singapore will depend on a few things:
- The number of units you need to service: the more units you will need to service, the more time will be taken and hence the more costly it will be. That said if you have multiple units to service, you should do them all at one go because you save on transport cost, and it will be a cheaper rate for each unit.
- The frequency of servicing: more frequent servicing will be costlier. That said, you should service your aircon 3-4 times each year.
- The type of aircon servicing: the more work and in-depth aircon servicing you require (e.g. chemical wash), the more expensive it will be
- The type of aircon: the more powerful and expensive your aircon is, the more costly the aircon servicing will be. This is because better aircon has more coils, which means more work
- Any extra charges for special requests: depending on your home location, the urgency of servicing or odd hours, the aircon servicing company may charge you extra for that.
As companies charge differently, you will find a range of pricing for aircon servicing. To ensure that you do not get overcharged, these are the average aircon servicing prices in Singapore.
|Number of units (with condenser)||Rates|
|1 unit||$40 – $60|
|2 unit||$45 – $65|
|3 unit||$60 – $80|
|4 units||$70 – $90|
|5 units||$80 – $120|
|6 units or more||$16 – $20 per unit|
Make sure that both your evaporator (indoor unit) and condenser (outdoor unit) are serviced regularly. As the condenser is placed outside your home, it is also subject to dust and dirt. Debris may get stuck inside, and risk damaging the condenser. Other issues like leaking of refrigerant or electrical faults can occur. Hence it is important to service it at least once a year. If your area is highly polluted, do it more frequently. A faulty condenser may result in your aircon not being cooling enough or a drop in energy efficiency. Repairing minor faults is always cheaper and less complicated than major breakdowns, so regular maintenance is always recommended.
What does aircon servicing include?
Aircon servicing usually includes the following:
- Cleaning: The technician will clean the filters, outer panels, coils, drain pan and pipes and get rid of air and moisture in the unit. This will ensure clean and efficient airflow. Ensure that the parts are dry before re-assembling it back in. Some aircon servicing includes deodorising and purifying of the air filters too.
- Maintenance and repair: If any parts are not working as efficiently, the technician should work on it.
- Oil fan lubrication: Lubricate the fan bearings so the aircon can work quietly
- Inspection and checking of parts: A visual check should be done to see all parts are working properly and if any replacements are needed.
- Gas top-up: The gas in your aircon is the cooling agent that helps your refrigerant to cool air. If there is a leak, you might be required to top up the gas at an additional cost.
- Test run: After the servicing, the aircon should be left on for 10 to 15 minutes for a test run to ensure that everything is working properly.
Not part of the standard aircon servicing is chemical cleaning, which is charged extra. Chemical wash is a more thorough cleaning that uses chemicals rather than just water.
If you are facing a problem with your aircon, and you just serviced it, you may be required to troubleshoot it. You can request for your aircon servicing provider to come down to troubleshoot it. It will cost about $40 – $50.
While these basic steps should be covered in a regular aircon servicing routine, not al companies provide the same standard and level of service. Do check with the company before you engage them for a package.
How often should I service my aircon?
If you use your aircon regularly, you should do aircon servicing 3 to 4 times a year (once a quarter). Even if you do not use your aircon often, you should still service your aircon at least once a year.
As you are required to service your aircon regularly, I suggest getting a package deal, for a one-time servicing will cost more. That said, make sure the aircon servicing company is a reputable one with good reviews before you purchase a package.
Is a chemical wash necessary?
Aircon servicing usually only covers basic cleaning and maintenance. A chemical wash is effective in removing stubborn clogs and dirt in places where regular aircon servicing does not reach.
You should do a chemical wash at least once a year. If you use your aircon very often, do a chemical wash once every 6 to 9 months.
A chemical wash is a preventive measure and also a solution to remove hard-to-remove sediments stuck in your aircon system. By cleaning out your pumps thoroughly with a chemical wash, your aircon gets a breath of fresh life. It is able to resume efficiency and pump out cleaner air for your home. A chemical wash gives you:
- Better air quality
- Reduced frequency of breakdown
- Enhances performance and efficiency, saving electricity
If you find that your aircon does not blow cold air anymore, or takes a much longer time to cool your room even after cleaning out your air duct, it is time for a chemical wash. Do not delay this, as the toxic pollutants and dirt stuck in your system could cause corrosion and result in more serious damage to your aircon, which will lead to a higher cost for aircon repair.
What is a chemical wash?
A chemical wash uses chemicals to wash your parts instead of water. It involves taking parts inside the air conditioner to soak them in a chemical solution. The chemical solution will help to break down and remove the dirt, debris, and acids from these parts. It also helps to kill harmful bacteria in your aircon. The chemical wash will also be washed down the drainage pipes to ensure that any dirt is completely washed out.
Because a chemical wash involves dismantling and reassembling your aircon parts, you should get a professional aircon service provider to do this for you.
How much is a chemical wash?
|Type of chemical wash||Involves||Cost|
|Non-dismantle chemical wash cost||Dismantling partial parts||$80 – $100 per unit|
|Dismantle chemical wash cost||Dismantling all parts, including the fan coil and electronic control||$130 – $180 per unit|
Chemical cleaning should take about 30 minutes per unit, and a complete overhaul will take about 1 hour per unit.
Can I do aircon servicing myself?
It would help to do some basic maintenance on your aircon. This includes:
- Regularly wiping down the aircon vent
- Vacuum the fan inside
- Removing and washing the aircon filter (which also needs to be replaced every 6 months to 1 year)
Watch this video below to learn how to do it yourself.
For regular aircon servicing, it would be better to engage an aircon servicing company to do it for you as they have the equipment required to do so. It will also be time-consuming for you if you were to do all the aircon units in your home. You will also need to have the experience to do the proper checks whether the condensing unit is blocked and to check the freon coolant levels.
Common problems faced with aircon
Why is my aircon not cold anymore?
If your aircon is no longer cooling. the common cause could be:
- A dirty or clogged air filter prevents the aircon from working efficiently
- Dirty or clogged condenser coil: The condenser coils are responsible for removing the heat from the compressor and the refrigerant. If it is dirty or clogged, it will not work properly, hence affecting your aircon ability to cool down the room
- Low gas pressure: if there is a gas leakage due to cracks in pipes, or mould in the internal units, this will cause the gas pressure to be lower than the normal level and affect the amount of cold air blown into the house.
- Busted compressor: If the compressor is not working properly, it will not be able to cool down the air
- Coolant or refrigerant leaking: If the coolant leaks, your aircon will not be cold enough
- Defective thermostat: If all other components are working properly, the problem may lie with the thermostat. It might not be reading the temperature properly and may not be able to trigger your aircon to blow cold air inside.
- Clogged drain pipes: The drain pipes are responsible for draining the water collected inside the house and drain it outside. If the pipes are clogged, the moisture will not be removed and your aircon will not work properly.
- Ductwork or insulation issues: Any blockage or leakage in the ducts can result in cool air escaping
- Faulty fan: The fan helps to remove the hot air in your condenser. If not working properly, it will affect your aircon cooling ability.
- Your aircon is not powerful enough to cool down the size of the space: Get an aircon with BTU suitable for your area
How to fix it: Get an aircon service provider to troubleshoot it, so you can diagnose the problem. You can prevent this problem from occurring with regular aircon servicing.
Why is my aircon leaking?
This used to happen to my aircon back at my parents’ home and I used to wonder why.
If your aircon was just recently installed, it might be due to incorrect installation, of which you should call your aircon installer to come and fix it. Incorrect installation could involve the following:
- The drain pipes are not connected properly
- The drainage pans are not connected properly to the unit
- The aircon unit is not leveled properly, causing water to accumulate in the drain pan and drip outside
- For window aircon, there may be a gap between the unit and the wall. This results in condensation of the coils and a leak.
Other causes of your aircon leaking could be:
- Blockage in the drainpipe: this is the most common cause of water leakage. With continued use of your aircon, your drain pipes can be clogged with dirt. When water cannot flow through the drain pipes there will be backflow and leakage. If the drainpipe is old, it can also develop cracks that cause water leaks. You will then need to replace the drainpipe.
- Blockage in the condensation line: The condenser, being placed outdoors is more prone to dust and debris. Without regular servicing, the condenser pipe can get clogged and cause leaking. In order to fix this, you will need to remove the outer unit to examine the condenser coils. If you see cracks, it is the cause of the problem. But otherwise, the technician will do a check to see if it is leaking by placing a cloth there. If there are leaks, it needs to be fixed.
- Clogged air filter: A clogged air filter will restrict air flow, and cause the air around the evaporator coils to become too cold. This causes them to freeze and be covered with a layer of ice. When the heat reaches this area, the ice melts and leads to water leakage. To fix this, clean your air filter at least twice a month to prevent this problem.
- Low gas issue: When the gas is lower than normal, the aircon will be pressured to work harder, and this can cause the evaporator coils to freeze. The ice formed will melt when in contact with heat, causing an overflow in the drain pipe. Filling the gas back up to normal levels should solve this.
- Faulty pump: The pump is responsible to pull the water from the overflow pan to the drain pipe. If it is not working, the water will overflow and leak.
When you notice water leaking from your aircon, contact your aircon service provider immediately to fix the problem. Similar to you visiting a doctor when you are unwell and showing symptoms, if you diagnose the aircon problem early, it is always easier to fix. Delay it and you might end up with a broken AC that requires more time and money to fix.
Financing your home purchases
If you would like to take up a loan for your home purchases, consider a personal loan, as renovation loans do not give you the cash upfront. You can find the best personal loan suitable for you on Singsaver.
I hope that our aircon servicing guide has helped you better understand why there is a need to do regular maintenance for your aircon. Do share this with your family and friends!
Also, do check out our other buying guides below!