air conditioning leaking waterNearly 90 percent of all central-air service calls are related to air conditioning leaking water.

When your air conditioning is leaking water any time spent worrying about the cost and not solving the issue is directly related to damage the water is causing! Don’t wait to address it. And fixing water leaks is usually fairly simple.

If your air conditioner is leaking from the ceiling and you don’t fix it – you could be replacing a ceiling.

Usually there are only three reason for an air conditioner to leak water. Let’s look at all three and see what you can do about it on your own.

#1.  Plugged condensate line.

A stopped up condensate line is the most common cause of A/C leaks by far. When the warm air flows across the a/c evaporator and the heat is removed, the cooler air cannot hold the moisture like the warm air does and it forms ‘condensate’ on the fins which then falls and collects in the condensate pan underneath. There is a pvc pipe that drains condensation from the overflow pan to the outside or directly into a drainpipe.

Usually what happens in the hot summer months is that algae grows in the pan or in the pipe and backs up the water, causing the pan to overflow (and drip down on your ceiling instead!)

Hint: Another way to know that the pan is flooded is that you might have a switch in your pan that shuts down the a/c is the pan is flooded. So if your a/c shuts down – check the pan for flooding before calling us!

We use several methods of clearing the line, from a simple wet/dry vacuum to suck out the algae, to running a wire through it, to having to disassemble the whole lone to find it! Yuk.

Keep your lines and pan clear with a little maintenance.  You can add chlorine bleach a couple of times during the hot months to prevent the accumulation of slime, algae, mildew, and bacteria which causes the problems.

#2. Damaged pan.

This is not so common but does happen. Check your pan for holes, cracks or other damage that can cause leaks especially on the corners and edges. If there is a crack, it should be fairly obvious as the water should be coming from that spot! Sometimes you can repair a crack or leak with epoxy, but it is usually best to replace the pan.

#3. Clogged filter.

You are changing your filters regularly – like every month or two?

A clogged or dirty filter will not allow enough air to flow, and can cause an ice buildup on the evaporator coils. When the ice does melt it can drip water that does not get caught by the pan.

There you go. Now you understand about air conditioning leaking water and what to do about it. Or just call us to come fix it!