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BMW 3-Series (E90 E92) Forum > E90 / E92 / E93 3-series Technical Forums > Wash, Wax, Detailing and Cosmetic protection/repairs > Spring Cleaning: Get your HVAC ready



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      04-09-2010, 01:12 AM   #1
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Spring Cleaning: Get your HVAC ready


Clearing the Air

By Michael Mankarious

Featured Product: Klima-Cleaner

Nothing goes hand in hand like spring and detailing your car. If youíve been dealing with snow than more likely than not youíve been waiting for the moment when you can unearth your car from layers of road salt and grime.

While surface treatment of the paint finish and interior get all the attention during the car care season, thereís one area that is often overlooked Ė the air conditioning system. If youíve ever noticed an unpleasant odor (old gym socks maybe?) coming out of your vents when your air conditioning system is on, you might think thereís nothing that could be done about it other than ignoring it or masking it with an air freshener. Or maybe youíve never noticed it and a passenger brought it to your attention. So why is there an odor coming from the air conditioner?

Cause

Every time you use your air conditioner, you are providing an opportunity for odor causing mold, mildew and bacteria to grow within your air conditioning system. To explain how this happens we must understand how the air conditioner system works. Hereís a basic explanation. When the air conditioner is on, it pulls moisture out of your carís interior through a unit called the evaporator core, which is located underneath your carís dashboard. When the humidity (moisture) levels drop, the air temperature also drops. The moisture that is pulled from the air condenses and is drained outside the car. Ever notice a pool of water under your parked car on a hot summer day? Thatís the water that was drained from the system. This also happens to be the way home air conditioners and refrigerators work.

Even though most of the moisture is drained from the car, moisture still remains on the evaporator core system. As the air circulates around the evaporator core, dust and pollen in the air stick to the moisture on the metal fins of the evaporator. Soon thereafter mildew and bacteria begin to grow on the surface of the evaporator. This collection of grime and odor causing agents begin to release odor and is the cause of the smell coming out of your vents.

Solution

One way to help prevent or at least reduce this issue is to keep the air conditioner on the fresh air setting. This keeps fresh air circulating around the evaporator which helps keep it and the surrounding area dry thereby reducing the chance of any mold, mildew and bacteria from growing. However, there are two disadvantages to this method. First, itís also not always convenient to switch to the fresh air setting in order to draw in hotter air to dry out the system. It just might be too hot or cold to be worth this extra effort. Itís also not economical. Second, allowing fresh air to flow in increases the accumulation of dust, pollen and brake dust build up. Of course if you have a cabin air filter you donít have to worry about that since it will trap the pollutants before it reaches the evaporator area.

Another possible solution is to spray a disinfectant like Lysolģ into the ventilation system or have your car treated with ozone or other similar system. However, this process does not affect any dust, pollen and other contaminants that have accumulated on the evaporator. While it may disinfect any mold, mildew and bacteria, the results are usually short term.

Last but not least, you can have your system treated by the dealership. They will use Klima-Cleaner or a similar product and may charge $150 and higher for this service. This is the most effective solution but it can be expensive.

Solution: Klima-Cleaner

As we found, the best solution is to have the dealership treat your air conditioning system for you. However, itís quite expensive. If you are a do-it-yourselfer, you can use the same product they use. Applying einszett Klima-Cleaner effectively disinfects mold, mildew and bacteria on the evaporator core. It also applies a thin layer of protectant that has been proven in laboratory tests which makes the growth of contaminants more difficult so the results are long lasting. Klima-Cleanerís effective foam solution emulsifies the debris build up on the evaporator core so itís cleaner and will run more efficiently.

Another significant benefit is the result of cleaner cockpit air. This is especially important for allergy sufferers who are sensitive to airborne contaminants.

For those who are highly sensitive to chemicals, rest assured that Klima-Cleaner is a water- and salt-based cleaner so chances of any skin reaction is extremely minimal.

Application

Apply Klima-Cleaner exactly as directed on the product label taking caution that it may be best to have it applied by a certified mechanic if you are unsure about applying the product yourself.

Itís best to apply Klima-Cleaner every six months. The easiest way to remember is to apply it every time you change your oil. We also suggest you change your cabin filter at the same time for optimum air conditioning performance and the freshest, cleanest air.

And donítí think that Klima-Cleaner is only for the spring and summer. Applying it in the winter is also important whether you live in area that snows or rains. If you drive in the winter, youíve probably used your air conditioner setting in conjunction with the heat setting to de-humidify the interior. If so, the evaporator core is susceptible to the same issues as in the warmer months.

Summary

Detailing your car is a full system process involving the treatment of every aspect of the car. An application of Klima-Cleaner as part of your detailing regimen will improve the performance of your air conditioning system and improve the air you breathe inside your car.

Disclaimer:

If you are unfamiliar with your carís air conditioning system or unsure about application, you should have Klima-Cleaner applied by a certified mechanic only. Many cars in the last few years have complicated air conditioning systems that are operated using electronic components. Applied incorrectly, Klima-Cleaner may damage these electronic components. einszett will not be responsible for any damage caused due to improper application of the product.

To purchase please click here - 1Z einszett Klima Cleaner
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      06-22-2010, 01:55 AM   #2
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SO where do we spray this in a e90/e92? Should we take the cabin filter out and spray directly into the intake vents?
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      06-22-2010, 07:17 AM   #3
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Originally Posted by howiedds View Post
SO where do we spray this in a e90/e92? Should we take the cabin filter out and spray directly into the intake vents?
you would want to replace the cabin filter than spray 1/2 the can into the center vent. (follow the rest of the instructions for the rest)
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      06-22-2010, 09:09 AM   #4
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Great stuff! I smoke in my car sometimes and this stuff does the job! It does freshen up the HVAC.
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      02-25-2011, 04:12 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by phil@detailersdomain View Post
you would want to replace the cabin filter than spray 1/2 the can into the center vent. (follow the rest of the instructions for the rest)
Question for you phil - does this fix the defroster air that comes through the vents right below the windshield? When I use my AC and have it coming through the front vents, it smells fine, but when I turn on the front defroster - smells like dead skunk!
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      02-26-2011, 12:47 AM   #6
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Question for you phil - does this fix the defroster air that comes through the vents right below the windshield? When I use my AC and have it coming through the front vents, it smells fine, but when I turn on the front defroster - smells like dead skunk!
is your car parked outside?
did you check the filters?
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      02-26-2011, 02:14 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by phil@detailersdomain View Post
is your car parked outside?
did you check the filters?
yes, checked the filter - no, garage parked!
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      02-26-2011, 01:52 PM   #8
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I would probably give it a try. You have nothing to lose if that doesn't work you may want to bring it to your dealer, there might be something trapped in there or stuck.
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