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Remove Rust Spots from a Window Air Conditioner's Cover and Interior

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If your window air-conditioning unit was stored in a shed that is not moisture-proof and now has visible rust spots on its cover and portions of its interior, remove the damaged areas by completing the following steps. Once you have eliminated signs of corrosion, apply a rust-inhibiting spray to the unit's metal components to prevent additional moisture-related damage.

Materials Needed

  • vinyl tarp
  • naval jelly
  • foam brush
  • cleaning cloth with abrasive surface
  • metal-cleaning agent
  • sponge
  • water
  • towel
  • face mask
  • disposable gloves
  • rust-inhibiting spray

Treat Rust Spots with a Dissolving Agent

Place the air conditioner on top of a level surface that is covered with a vinyl tarp. Remove the unit's cover and use a foam brush to apply a coat of naval jelly to each rust spot on both sides of the cover. Inspect the unit's interior and apply naval jelly to corroded areas in the same manner. Wait for the rust to begin dissolving. This will occur after several minutes. Wipe a cloth with an abrasive surface back and forth over the rusted sections to assist with removing them.

Clean the Treated Areas and Spray a Rust-Inhibitor on Them

Apply a metal-cleaning agent to the unit's interior and cover. Remove any naval jelly that remains on parts of the unit, as well as surface dirt, by wiping each sprayed section with a damp sponge. Use a towel to dry the unit's interior and cover. Secure a face mask over your nose and mouth in order to prevent breathing in harsh fumes that the rust-inhibiting spray emits. Cover your hands with a pair of disposable gloves.

Evenly apply a coat of rust-inhibiting spray to metal parts that make up the unit's interior and any metal pieces on the cover. When applying the spray to the cover, spray one side and wait for it to dry before turning the cover and applying the inhibitor to the other side. Once the inhibitor has dried, secure the unit's cover and install the air conditioner in a window in your home or business. 

Take Care of the Unit

The rust-inhibiting spray will provide the unit with protection from moisture. It is important, however, to maintain the unit in order to ensure that it will remain damage-free altogether. Wipe off the cover and interior parts with a damp cloth as needed. Dry surfaces with a towel when finished. Replace the unit's filter whenever it has a dirty surface. These steps will assist with keeping the unit in operating order.

For more help with your air-conditioning repairs, contact a company such as HomeSmart From Xcel Energy.