If the outside condenser unit that is connected to your home's air conditioning system is located under a large tree and maple tree sap has dripped onto portion's of the unit's cover, removing the sticky substance will prevent the sap from accumulating further and possibly damaging internal parts of the unit. The following project will teach you how to remove sap, inspect the unit's interior, and clean internal parts if needed.


  • bucket of warm water
  • sponges
  • plastic putty knife
  • mineral spirits
  • soft cleaning cloths
  • screwdriver
  • shop vacuum cleaner
  • metal cleaning agent
  • hand held rotary scrub brush
  • towel

Remove Maple Tree Sap

Disconnect the power to the central air conditioning system. Fill a utility bucket with warm water. Soak a large sponge in the bucket and press the sponge against the sap-covered surfaces. After the water has come into contact with the sap for a few minutes, the sticky substance will soften. When this occurs, use a plastic putty knife to scrape the sap from the condenser unit's cover. Use a cleaning cloth to grasp the sap from the tip of the knife whenever the end of the tool becomes covered with sap.

If sap residue remains on the units cover after using a putty knife, use warm water to dampen a soft cleaning cloth. Add a few drops of mineral spirits onto the corner of the cloth. Use the cloth to wipe away sap residue. 

Rinse The Unit's Cover And Inspect And Clean Internal Components

Rinse the unit's cover with water. Remove the cover by lifting it upward from the unit. If the cover is secured with screws, use a flathead or phillips screwdriver to remove the hardware before lifting the cover. Inspect the unit's interior. If metal pieces have dust particles between them, move a vacuum cleaner's hose across the dirty pieces to collect the dust. If stains are on the metal, use a spray or foam metal cleaning agent to loosen substances.

Read a cleaning product's enclosed instructions before applying a product to metal pieces to inform yourself concerning how long a product will need to remain on metal surfaces to effectively loosen residue. Move a hand held rotary scrub brush across the treated metal. As the circular bristle pad spins, the pad will lift dirty residue from metal components. Use a damp rag to wipe off clean metal pieces. Move a towel across metal to dry internal pieces. Secure the cover over the condenser unit before turning the power to the air conditioning unit on. Contact a service, like Weather Control Air Conditioning, Inc., for more help.