What Causes An Air Conditioner To Leak Water?


Air Conditioner Water Leaks Generate Majority of AC Service Calls

Almost 90% of logged AC service calls are linked to air conditioner water leaks. Good news: if corrected quickly HVAC leaks seldom amount to major repair expenses. Bad news: if left unchecked HVAC leaks can result in massive damage to the core structure of your home.

It’s about accumulated water damage. An air conditioner leaking water that comes from a crawlspace-mounted air handler draws termites, generates mold, rots wood, and can also weaken foundational support systems. AC water leakage that comes from an attic mounted air handler can end up soaking attic insulation, causing mildew, and dripping through the ceilings of your North Carolina home.

AC Water Leaks Typically Easy To Fix

Summer in Raleigh typically puts your HVAC into cooling overdrive. According to U.S. Climate Data, the average June to September Charlotte NC high temperatures float between 81 to 89 degrees. But it’s not unusual to see July and August break above 97.

The following tips offer some DIY advice, but never diddle around with an air conditioner water leak. If in doubt of what to do, act quickly and call an HVAC tech ASAP. Getting professional AC service for a water-related AC leak typically comes in cheap. Ignoring the problem often results in accumulate and expensive home repair situations.

3 Primary Causes For AC Water Leaks

1) Cracked AC Drain Pan

Problem: The AC overflow pan is a narrow-lipped catch tray that sets beneath the air handler and catches condensation that accumulates from the AC system. The pan fits to a small pipe that is designed to permit the moisture a controlled exit from the pan. However, even small holes or cracks will permit leakage into undesirable regions of our home.

Solution: Use a flashlight to identify any points of leakage. Use epoxy glue as a temporary patch. Replace the overflow pan as the permanent solution. Replacement may require the services of a trained Raleigh NC HVAC technician.

2) Clogged Filters

Problem: Here we are talking about the AC return air filter. Dirty filters cause poor airflow. Poor airflow can cause ice to form on your AC evaporator coils. The unit stops functioning. You turn off the power. The ice melts. Water drips.

Solution: Change or clean the filter. For long-term prevention, perform a routine monthly inspect and clean or replace of your HVAC filter.

3) Plugged Up Condensate Line

Problem: As previously mentioned, the overflow pan discharges accumulated moister via an attached condensate drain line. When this line gets clogged up, water floods the overflow pan. This creates one of two possible problems: 1) water overflows into your home or crawlspace or 2) your system is equipped with an overflow cutoff switch, which will automatically cause your Raleigh home AC to shut down.

Solution: Clear the clogged line. This can be accomplished via a wet/dry shop vacuum, a low-pressure hand pump, or even a straightened cloths hanger wire. For long-term clog prevention, try using a bit of liquid algae/mildew restrainer two or three times per year. Pour it directly through the condensate drain line.

Get Rapid Response Air Conditioning Service

Content presented by Raleigh, NC based Delta Heating & Cooling, experts in residential HVAC maintenance, sales and installation. Need help with an AC water leak. Give us a call! Our Certified technicians are available for all of your Raleigh HVAC needs, 24/7.