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Smelly AC System? Einszett 1Z Klima Cleaner AC Odor Remover

by

Early this summer I had a musty smell in my car, wasn’t horrid just foul and unpleasant.  I read on some of the F150 forums that people were having a similar issue and various causes were shared.  Still to this date I don’t think there is a perfect explanation as to what is happening and at that point I didn’t care, I simply looked at it as a test for the Einszett Klima Cleaner for AC odor remover.  I was leaving for a trip to California to help with the Meguiar’s and Kevin Brown at the NXTi detailers training during the first of June. If you are a detailer and don’t know about this training, FIND OUT.  The plan was to clean the vents two days before leaving and since the AC would be used for many many miles on this trip, it would give me a good idea on it’s durability of taking care of the issue.  I ran the AC for 1700 miles total!

Odors in cars come from the bacteria chomping down on matter and then releasing foul smelling by products of that process. Whether the odors are in your carpet or AC unit, the goal is the same, kill the bacteria at the source and the smell will be gone.  The long tube that comes with this product allows you to reach deep in the system to deposit the cleaner. This will also attack and mold and fungi really well. Please note that there are two versions of this cleaner, one is the Klima Cleaner professional AC cleaner and the other is the Klima Cleaner ETU AC cleaner.  I knew my smell was deep in the vent system so I wanted the hose which is the professional cleaner.  I’ve tried the fogger version for a general cleaning system of the whole interior and AC system and it worked pretty good, but didn’t reach deep in the vents like the pro versions.  So the moral of this is know where the smell is located and attack it directly if possible.

Follow the directions on the product listing on DI for the specifics.  I didn’t do a full removal of some areas as I didn’t need to with my truck.

Here they are again as well:

Caution: This application method will require you to disassemble interior trim and is recommended for advanced users only. Einszett is not liable for any damage that may occur if the procedure is done incorrectly.

  1. Read directions completely before application. Please do this so you have an idea of what to expect.
  2. Turn off vehicle power.
  3. Remove glove box to access blower fan. Once glove box is removed, you can decide between two options. 1) Remove blower fan to have open access to ducting that leads directly to evaporator or 2) you can insert the Klima-Cleaner tube through the fins of the of the blower fan.
  4. If you remove the blower fan, you can move on to the next step. If you choose to insert the tube through the fins of the blower fan, you might have to remove the pollen and dust filter (also called the cabin air filter) in order to have access. This might be located in a tray directly above the blower fan.
  5. Shake Klima-Cleaner can to ensure proper foaming of product when dispensed. Attach the supplied application tube to the can.
  6. Insert tube through fin of blower fan or if you’ve removed the blower motor, just insert the tube into ducting. Feed tube until you can go no further.
  7. Press trigger to dispense entire contents of can – about 2 minutes. While dispensing, hold can as upright as possible. DO NOT invert can. As you spray, the thick foam solution will spray on to the evaporator and surrounding evaporator housing.
  8. After dispensing product, wait 20 minutes for product to clean the system. During this time re-install all components such as the blower (if removed), pollen filter (if removed) and glove box. You’ll also notice at this time that the product will be draining from underneath the car.
  9. After the 20 minutes are complete, open windows to allow fresh air to enter vehicle. Turn on fan to maximum setting with A/C setting in ON position for approximately 1 minute to dry system. Procedure is now complete!

Follow-up: Treat your system once a year or as necessary to clean the air conditioning system and keep your cabin air clean, healthy and smelling fresh!

I left my windows down over night to vacate any cleaner smell, the after smell is not a strong chemical smell to me, but more of a fresh clean smell.  So if smells are something you are sensitive to, allow ample air flow to vacate it.

Results:

The entire trip the smell didn’t come back and has lasted for 4 months, after that time there is a very faint smell coming back.  I blame this more on the design of the AC system then the product not working, the system allows some pooling of old condensate which breeds bacterial and fungi colonies.  I gave the system a quick shot of the fogger version and all is well again.

Tips:

  • Fill the entire vent with foam, not just the bottom
  • Use this, and all cleaners in a well ventilated area
  • Have a can on hand it can be very helpful for friends and family and earn you major bonus points in the pecking order or life

1Z Klima Cleaner AC-5

If you look deep into the above photo you can see a white foam that fills the vent tube.

1Z Klima Cleaner AC-3

Shove the plastic tube as far down as it can go, in some cases your vent system might branch off, make sure you treat both branches!

1Z Klima Cleaner AC

Use this down every section of your AC system, I have some window AC vents that are small.

1Z Klima Cleaner AC-4

The tube is quite long and I didn’t have a problem reaching down into the system of a two cars I’ve used this on.

Greg Nichols Reflections Detailing
Greg Nichols
Reflections Detailing
Logan, Utah
Reflections-Detailing.com

5 comments on Smelly AC System? Einszett 1Z Klima Cleaner AC Odor Remover

  1. Greg@DI says:

    Great article Greg, I definitely need to do this to my AC!

  2. Felix says:

    I have the professional klima cleaner pro version iv had it sitting in my arsenal in the basement for a while i never got a chance to use it as my car was being repaired and what not anyways now its a cold 28 degrees outside in north jersey and i want to change my cabin filter and also use the cleaner to ensure its as clean as possible i just dont know how this will work in such a cold climate should i wait or is it safe to use this product in this kind of crappy weather ?

    • Greg says:

      Hello Felix,

      I don’t know of any reason you would have to wait. Is it smelly now still? I would imagine with the cold temps you will run the heater which might help dry it out, but smell might still linger.

      I’ve never done it the winter so I can’ say for sure. If you come home after a long drive, the cabin will be warm. Spray it, allow it to work for about 30min, then turn on the recirculation system and run it for another 5min, then maybe turn it to warm air and help dry it out faster (this is not stated by the company but might help) allow it to air out.

      Cheers,
      GREG

  3. Felix says:

    Hey Greg

    Thanks for the quick reply i love this blog its very informative and i really appreciate the time that all you guys take out of your day to do write ups on products and methods used to paint correct and detail cars including questions asked by the general public so as far as the a/c system on the car there is no odor in the system what so ever i bought this product to kill any potential bacteria that might have built up in the system and i have never cleaned the system since i took ownership of the car which was when it was new so the car is about 9 yrs old i believe since the a/c system isnt smelling of anything bad and they recomend to use it with the a/c system il play it safe and wait till the weather warms up just so i dont have any problems down the line and end up having to pay for a repair that could of been avoided or another can that didnt work properly because of the winter weather thats right around the corner again thanks for the reply also i would love to one day be an author on this site to do write ups on products and methods one day i just dont know how to go about it take care

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