General Climate air conditioner

Independent dismantling of the split system

The split system is not called a system for nothing. This is a technically complex device consisting of many components. Therefore, the competent dismantling of such a system is no less important than the installation.

Most users of split systems call specialists if it is necessary to change the air conditioner to a new one in the room or dismantle it forever. And this is the right approach, since professional masters are engaged in this on an ongoing basis and have invaluable experience in addition to knowledge.

But, if you are a home master, and are not used to using the help of a specialist from the outside, for sure you may have a question about how to remove the air conditioner from the wall without assistance. Theoretically, of course, you can remove the air conditioners yourself. And the dismantling of the indoor unit of the air conditioner is possible for any home craftsman. But with the outdoor unit, not everything is so simple, even an experienced master may have difficulties.

In this article, we will tell you in detail how the air conditioner is dismantled in an apartment. You will learn about the basic rules that should be followed. Please note that turning off the air conditioner consists of several stages. You will need some time and at least one assistant so that the process does not drag on for many hours.

General information

disassembly of the air conditioner

Dismantling of the indoor units of air conditioners and outdoor units can be done independently. But you must meet at least 3 conditions for your attempts to be successful:

  • The outdoor unit should be located at a height of no more than two meters from the ground, or on your balcony. Otherwise, dismantling can be dangerous to life and health. If you live above the first floor, entrust the dismantling to an industrial climber;

  • The work will have to be done in pairs with an assistant, or better yet, two. The blocks weigh a lot, especially the outdoor one;

  • It is necessary to buy or rent a pressure gauge station in advance. At the same time, selecting it in accordance with the type of freon on which your air conditioner works.

Please note

Are you going to dismantle a non-working air conditioner? In this case, continue reading the article immediately from the section «Dismantling the split system». Well, if you want to remove a working device that can still be installed in a new place and fully used, read some of the rules.

When dismantling a serviceable air conditioner, it is necessary to preserve the refrigerating agent and at the same time not lose the tightness. If dirt gets into the system during disassembly, the air conditioner can quickly fail when it is installed in a new place. Before dismantling, the freon is pumped out, preserving most of it, and the blocks are separated from each other.

Before you start dismantling…

air conditioner rattles

Soon we will answer the question of how to remove the split system yourself, but for now let’s figure out how to properly assemble the freon from the air conditioner and what tools will be useful when dismantling.


To dismantle the air conditioner in the apartment, you will not need specific tools. Except, perhaps, the pressure gauge station. It is not necessary to buy it, you can just rent it. The rest of the tools will be found in the apartment of any home master.

So, you will need:

  • a set of keys (both wrenches and hexagons);

  • a set of screwdrivers;

  • manual pipe cutter;

  • vise;

  • pliers;

  • pressure gauge.

Descent of the refrigerating agent

How much freon is in a household air conditioner

Let’s return to the topic of collecting freon. If you remove a serviceable air conditioner and want to keep it working, you must first flush the freon.

On the side of the outdoor unit there are two tubes, a thin and a thick one. Through a thin tube, the refrigerant from the condenser enters the evaporator. A thick tube is used to pump the refrigerating agent into the condenser. The tubes are connected to the unit with the help of fittings.

First, you need to collect the refrigerant in the condenser. Follow the instructions:

  1. Remove the covers from both fittings and the nipple;

  2. Connect the collector to the nipple;

  3. Set the air conditioner to the cold air supply mode, set the lowest temperature;

  4. Wait 5-10 minutes for the device to start working at full capacity;

  5. Close the valve of the fitting to which the thin tube is connected;

  6. Use the pressure gauge to track the pressure indicator. Wait until the arrow is at the value of -1 MPa;

  7. Close the second fitting with a hex key. After that, your assistant should immediately turn off the air conditioner. This way you will keep the compressor working properly.

That’s all, the freon is lowered. Now you can proceed to the dismantling of the air conditioning system.

Dismantling of the split system

air conditioner malfunctions

How to remove the air conditioners yourself, without damaging anything? That’s a good question. After all, dismantling a split system is not the easiest task. But if you managed to cope with the correct collection of freon, you can probably try to perform a complete dismantling of the system.

However, we still repeat that it is better to entrust such work to professionals with experience. Especially if the outdoor unit is installed at a high height. Believe me, industrial climbers exist for a reason and their services are so in demand for a reason. You should not risk your health by trying to save several thousand rubles.

Below is a detailed instruction on how to remove the split system yourself. But paired with an assistant, of course. Do not perform the disassembly alone.

Outdoor unit

what to do if the outdoor unit is buzzing

How to properly remove the air conditioners, or rather, its outdoor unit? Here is a short list of steps that you need to do:

  1. The copper tubes are disconnected;

  2. All cables are disconnected;

  3. Unscrew the fasteners of the unit, the air conditioner is removed from the facade.

It doesn’t take much intelligence to disconnect the cables and unscrew the fasteners. Anyone who has ever held tools in their hands can cope with this. But disconnecting the tubes will require more attention from you.

We recommend doing the following: using a side cutter, cut off the copper tubes, retreating 10-15 cm from the edge of the fitting, after cutting, clamp the edges with a vise. This is a quick and easy way, even an inexperienced home master can cope with such work.

In addition, in this case, the probability of dust entering the compressor is minimal. But keep in mind that after such a «procedure» you will have to put new tubes, the old ones will not be able to be used when re-installing the system.

More experienced craftsmen use a different method. They unscrew the cap nut that fixes the tube and the fitting, take out the pipe and put a special cover in its place. In this case, the tubes can be reused. But, to perform such work, you need to have the appropriate experience. Otherwise, air will enter the system, and with it dust.

Choose the option that seems most appropriate to you. And then we will tell you how to remove the indoor unit.

Indoor unit

The main mistakes of McQuay air conditioners

Dismantling the indoor unit of a split system may seem easier than removing the outdoor unit. But this is not the case. Often you have to tinker with the internal unit, so the help of an assistant will be more useful than ever.

Most of the household split systems are equipped with a wall-mounted indoor unit. There are other variations of indoor units, but we will tell you how to properly dismantle a wall-mounted indoor unit.

To remove the indoor unit of the air conditioner, follow the instructions:

  1. Remove the decorative cover. In some models, you just need to snap off the latches, and in some-unscrew the panel with a screwdriver;

  2. Disconnect all cables;

  3. Cut or remove the copper tubes in one of the ways that we talked about above when we wrote about dismantling the outdoor unit;

  4. Drain the condensate from the drain pan and drain pipe. Cut off the drain pipe. Be careful when draining condensate from the drain pan. Use the help of the assistant;

  5. Release the latches that hold the indoor unit and the mounting plate together. In some cases, it is necessary to use a screwdriver;

  6. It remains to remove the air conditioner from the wall and dismantle the plate on which it was held.

There are not so many steps, but in practice they take a lot of time. Especially the condensate drain from the drainage pan, which still needs to be reached. In any case, you will cope with an assistant many times faster.

In the cold season

air conditioner icing

If you want to remove the air conditioner in the apartment in the cold season, when the temperature is zero or minus outside, you should take into account some nuances. Dismantling the indoor unit of air conditioners with your own hands will not differ from dismantling in the warm season, but you need to be careful with the outdoor unit.

Each air conditioner has its own operating temperature range. These characteristics are indicated in the technical documentation that comes with the device. Usually it is -5 or a maximum of -10 degrees Celsius. If the device does not have a winter kit, and the temperature outside the window is below the operating range, it is not necessary to dismantle it with your own hands.

Professional craftsmen can cope with this task if they use a special station for pumping and collecting refrigerant. But at home, you are unlikely to be able to perform such work yourself. Therefore, we recommend postponing the dismantling until warmer weather, or calling the craftsmen.


So, we told you how to remove the split system with your own hands. Dismantling the indoor unit of the air conditioner is as difficult as removing the outdoor unit. But the most difficult thing is to properly drain the freon if the device is in working condition and this performance must be maintained.

Turning off the air conditioner is not an easy task. Dismantling of a non-working split system is much easier, any home master can cope with this. But the working device must be removed correctly, taking into account every nuance. Otherwise, air can get into the system, and with it dust, which will disable the air conditioner when it is re-installed and turned on.

If you are not confident in your abilities, entrust this task to professionals. They have not only the knowledge and tools, but also many years of experience. By trial and error, they were able to learn how to dismantle the air conditioning system correctly.

In the comments below, you can share your experience on how to turn off the air conditioner yourself. Give some useful tips, tell us about your experience. We wish you good luck!

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