Have you ever noticed that when you clean a condenser coil with acid or “red” coil cleaner the fins turn a shiny silver color? The caustic cleaners, like the red acid coil cleaners (hydrofluoric acid), actually etch or remove a tiny layer of aluminum while cleaning, leaving the fins shiny silver. It looks good but after a coil has been cleaned many times with an acid coil cleaner the fins get thin and start to crumble. Most of us have seen this happen. The acid cleaners are also very dangerous to handle, can cause health problems, and can also damage roofing materials.
Why do I bring this up? Many HVAC and even Refrigeration manufactures have gone to the Microchannel condenser coil which is all aluminum, tubes, and fins. The Microchannel coils are much more efficient and require less refrigerant. The aggressive acid coil cleaners containing hydrofluoric acids will not only etch the fins but they will start to etch the tubing. Over time the tubing can be damaged beyond repair.
What is the safe way to clean a Microchannel coil? The fins are much stronger than on the copper fin tube coil so high-pressure water can be used without causing coil damage. Use only non-aggressive non-acid coil cleaners like Nu-Calgon's Cal Clean, Special HD Cal Clean or environmentally safe plant-based Cal-Green. These cleaners are mild yet effective, so they will clean without damaging the coils or roofs. They are also much safer to use. BY is your source for all of your coil cleaning needs.