In the peak of summer, homeowners’ cooling systems are working harder than ever. Unfortunately, this opens the opportunity for extensive damage from your air conditioning unit straining. Few malfunctions prompt as much panic as an AC leak. As liquid begins pooling under your unit, you’ll likely face a flurry of questions. Is that really water, or something else? Which part of my unit is the stream coming from? Why does my air conditioning have water in it anyway?
An experienced HVAC technician can answer these inquiries best. More often than not, professional help is necessary when your AC is leaking water. Fortunately, Efficient Systems is here to tell you everything you need to know about AC leaks. Until then, continue reading for a basic overview of this cooling issue, as well as a few potential DIY solutions.
How Does My AC Produce Water?
Surprisingly, it is perfectly normal for liquid to appear in your unit. Most systems contain an evaporator coil that helps decrease the temperature of passing air. During this process — given warm gusts are passing over the chilled coil — condensation appears. That means any liquid that appears around your AC is probably just water.
That being said, units that are running properly have elements to whisk moisture away before it can build up, meaning you shouldn’t ever see this liquid. A mishap with any of these elements leads to a dreaded AC leak.
Potential AC Leak Causes
Blocked Condensation Drain
A clogged drain line is the most common culprit. Your air conditioning should have a condensation drain positioned under its evaporator coils, directing excess moisture out of your home. Over time, dirt and debris may block this exit path, meaning water will pool up and seep out of your system.
If you feel comfortable navigating your unit, you can remove the blockage with an appropriate vacuum (that is, one that can endure moisture). Meanwhile, if you aren’t familiar with your system’s structure, an HVAC professional can easily replicate this declogging process.
Low Refrigerant Levels
Another common cause is inadequate refrigerant, a vapor-liquid mixture that helps manage the pressure within your system. Improper levels can lead to pressure drops and, consequently, frozen coils. This excess liquid often overwhelms a unit and begins pooling.
This issue can lead to irreversible damage if ignored. Therefore, it’s best to keep up with AC tune-ups to spot this problem early on. Or, if you believe an existing leak is the result of interior freezing, schedule emergency repairs.
Clogged Air Filter
Like low refrigerant, filter filth can result in frozen coils. When homeowners don’t replace their filters every 90 days, dust and debris often accumulate and restrict airflow. This forces an air conditioner to work way harder than usual while simultaneously blocking warm air from reaching its coils.
This is perhaps the easiest issue to resolve independently, as you can simply swap out your filters regularly.
Corroded Drain Pan
Finally, if your AC is leaking water, an aging drain pan may be to blame. This part catches and gathers water that drips from your system’s coils, which is then flushed out via the drain line.
Over time, pans tend to deteriorate or rust. Again, if you’re familiar with your unit’s structure, you can purchase a new part and swap out the pan independently. Otherwise, an AC technician should assist you.
Get Help from Beaumont HVAC Experts
When left unaddressed, AC leaks can destroy units permanently, leaving you in need of an AC replacement. Therefore, if there’s any doubt about the cause of excess moisture or how to fix it, turn to professionals.
Efficient Systems strives to provide the highest quality service for homeowners in need. Request a service appointment today to discover the precise cause behind your AC leak and stop the flooding quickly!