Your AC’s inside unit contains the evaporator coil that cools the warm air blown over it. This causes condensation (moisture) to form on the coil, just like how water droplets form on a cold glass of water on a hot day. The moisture on the coil drips into a drain pan and down a condensate drain line (a white PVC pipe) that leads out your home. Here is where your condensate drain comes in. The air conditioning system is designed to draw water form the air as it releases the heat outside to your home and cools the air inside. The water that condenses is usually dispersed through a drain then brought outdoors. If there is a problem with the condensate drain, you will start to see water in places you would rather not have it. do you notice moisture on the ceiling or wall or floor around the air conditioner. This looks lid a condensate drain problem. So, lets take a look at what could be causing this problem.
What is a Condensate Drain?
As was mentioned the air conditioner has a condenser coil that draws moisture from the atmosphere while it cools your home. The line is an exit route for moisture collected by the evaporator coil as air passes over it. The coil removes humidity from the air and converts it into water. The water drains into the condensate drain pan, enters the drain line, travels down the drain pipe and is deposited outside near the AC’s outdoor unit. It’s a simple process unless something like moist walls, ceilings or floors happen. Then you will know your AC unit is probably be the culprit.
What Can Happen With a Condensate Line Clog?
Several mishaps can occur with a blocked drain line…
- Ice can form on the AC coils and inside the drain line. The ice can severely damage your air conditioning system.
- Water in the drain pan can overflow and spill its contents inside your air conditioner.
- Pools of water can collect on the floor near the indoor AC unit and wreak havoc on your floors, ceiling, carpeting and furnishings.
- Loose drain pipe fittings can cause leaks that damage your drywall or cause water to drip from your ceiling. Depending on where the AC unit is located and the severity of the leak, large areas of your home could be water-damaged.
Does the Humidity Affect the Air-conditioner?
Most of the discomfort we feel during the hot summer months is due to atmospheric humidity. In theory, an air conditioning system should be able to remove moisture from the air. Humidity affects air conditioning negatively because it cancels out the cooling effect. When the humidity is too high, your home will feel warmer than it actually is. You’ll have to keep your air conditioning system running but won’t derive nearly as many benefits from using it. The air conditioner doesn’t have as easy way to deposit that moisture. In order to make the air more comfortable in your home your air conditioner dehumidifies while it cools.
Need A Professional?
Regular maintenance for your HVAC unit will keep your condensate line from clogging in the first place. To help keep your condensate line clear, we recommend pouring a cup of vinegar down the drain line every couple of months. This will help kill mold, algae, and fungi before it has a chance of clogging your drain line. Use vinegar for preventative maintenance throughout the year. It won’t damage your drain line. If you have stained ceiling, wall or floor it is best to call a trained professionals who will will completely clear your condensate drain line and fix any leaks you may have.
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About Phoenix Comfort Systems
Phoenix Comfort provides a full range of air conditioning and heating repair, installation, and maintenance services for residential and commercial customers. We keep your air conditioning and heating systems in their best condition and ready to go when you need them most, following the industry’s “best practice” methods and standards. Phoenix Comfort carries a full line of quiet, energy-efficient air conditioning and heating equipment.
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