Can you run the Air Conditioner without Filter? What are Evaporator Coils?

Can you run the Air Conditioner without Filter?

Emergencies are situations that make us do many mistakes. These emergencies become worse during sleep time, Especially with the Air Conditioner. Isn’t it? It’s like a nightmare to spend a night without a comfortable Air Conditioning.  There are some situations that happen to AC parts, which puts us in confusion about whether to run it as usual with that part or not. Among those, filter confusion is one. Can you run the Air Conditioner without Filter by cleaning the evaporator coils? 

Yes, we can run the Air conditioner without Filter only in the case of maintaining the cleaned evaporator coils in it. If not, you should not run an AC without the air filter in it. 

Making this with a simple sentence, You should not run an AC without a filter in it when you have dirty/unclean evaporator coils in it. Knowing this you might go for the search of what is the evaporator coil, its location, and how to clean it, right!!!

Wait…You don’t actually need to move on to the next search because I am here to provide all the solutions that you might go for the search. Are you still here …interesting. So, without any wait let’s get into the topic. For this, you need to scroll down.

What is an Evaporator coil?

The evaporator coil is one of the important components in an AC unit which helps in blowing the cool and absorbing hot air in the room. This is a set of coils connected by a single tube with several turns in it. Inside the coil, a cooling agent is present to freeze up the coils in order to blow cool air from it.

And this is how an evaporator coil looks like,

Can you run the Air Conditioner without Filter

Evaporator Coil Location:

As the evaporator coil is used to blow cool air, the location of the unit is present in the inner unit of AC. It is located right next to the filters in the inner unit when you open the front lid of an AC unit.

Coming back to the main topic of cleaning the evaporator coil,…

How to Clean Evaporator coils in AC?

There are many ways to clean the evaporator coils in AC. But the easiest way to clean the coils with the evaporator foam cleaners. Firstly we need to open the lid of the AC by switching off the power supply to it.

Locate the coils which are present after the filters in the inner unit of AC. (Look at the picture of evaporator coil) . After locating check for the dirt debris on the evaporator coils. If they are clean just wipe it off with a brush or cloth.

You can even vacuum the coils, for more cleaning effects if the deis are very light. But, if you found the coil filled with huge debris like in the below picture, then you need to clean it with an evaporator coil foam filter. 

Evaporator Coils

Spray the foam cleaner on the evaporator coil. You observe the formation of foam on the areas you sprayed.  This results in the cleaning of evaporator coils without any rinse with water.

What happens if we don’t clean the evaporator coil in the case of filter absence

Before knowing this we need to know how the dust debris accumulates on an evaporator coil. As we discussed earlier, evaporator coils are one of the important components in AC, it helps in blowing the cool air by freezing up the coils.

It is also responsible for absorbing the hot air in the room by taking it to form the filters. 

Hot air along with dust particles get filtered by the filters attached to the AC. So, in the case of filter absence, the dirt will settle on the evaporator coils and leads to debris. The accumulated debris of dust will not allow the evaporator coil to freeze. This will result in a lower cooling effect from AC.

The quality of air is important while running an AC. The absence of filters can allow the debris to form on the evaporator coil. Air blew through the coils will also allow the bacteria, viruses along with air to the room. When we inhale the low quality of air this will result in many health problems and it causes much danger for the people who suffer from asthma.

Not only the cooling effect, but it also damages some of the internal parts. Some of them like

As per the working of an Air Conditioner, we can run AC without a filter in it. But, it, not a good gesture to perform, because of the dust, which gets blocked by the filters while running will enter into the AC inner unit and damages the parts by its accumulation also. 


Finally, I can conclude that cleaning an evaporator is too risky when compared to buying a new filter.right!!! The above methods are recommended to run in the case of emergency as long term running will damage the parts internally.

Frequently Asked Questions:

Q) What is the condenser coil in an air conditioner? Same like the evaporator coil, the condenser coil also is a set of coils that is present outside of the AC unit which blows hot air in the case of cooling effect and cool air in the case of heat mode.

Q) How long do AC coils last? The alone lifespan of an AC coil is equal to the lifespan of an AC unit it has. The general lifespan of an AC is about 15-20 years only in the case of proper maintenance only.

Q) Which way does the AC filter go? When the filters are subjected to replace with the new one, we need to observe the signs on it like an arrow direction. By checking these arrows, the air filter needs to be inserted.

Q) What happens if you put the AC filter in backward? This condition will increase the energy consumption of the AC as the filter end will be inside.

Image source: aspergillosis

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