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Carolina Climate Control Blog

Why Is Water Leaking From My Air Conditioner?

When your air conditioner is running, you may occasionally hear the sounds of water dripping inside it. This is a normal sound to hear: it’s condensate moisture from the cooling process getting moved out of the AC. Like any part of an air conditioner, the condensate drainage system can malfunction and lead to water leaking out of the unit.

If you see water pooling around your HVAC cabinet indoors, you’ll want to have the problem corrected as soon as possible with professional AC repair in Greenville, SC. Leaving this unaddressed not only threatens parts of your home with water damage, it can cause the air conditioner to shut off, lose efficiency, and become damaged.

What can go wrong that will lead to these water leaks? We’ll look at the causes more below.

The Role of Water in Your AC

Water doesn’t cool the air coming from your air conditioner. (There’s a type of cooling system that does use water, an evaporative cooler, but these aren’t common in South Carolina.) Instead, the cooling process creates water. The warm air that passes over the cold evaporator coil inside the AC loses heat to the refrigerant in the coil. As the refrigerant evaporates, it causes the water moisture in the air to condense along the coil’s surface—the same as any type of condensation moisture you might see on a window or on the surface of a glass of cold liquid. 

The moisture on the coil needs to go somewhere. When it drips off the coil, it falls into a condensate pan. A pump draws the water from the pan and out through a line to the outside. This safely and cleanly removes the water from the AC.

Condensate Drainage Problems Leading to Leaks

There are several problems with this drainage system that can cause the AC to leak water. These water leaks may cause the AC to shut down when it trips a limit switch. It will also make the inside of the air conditioner so humid that mold and mildew will develop which will not only create a nasty smell around the house, it will damage the AC and cause a decline in energy efficiency. 

  • Cracked pan: If the condensate pan cracks, it will start to leak water. Professionals will need to replace the pan to repair this.
  • Clogged drain: The condensate drain can become clogged up with algal growth, which will quickly cause the pan to overflow. (The pan is only 1” deep.)
  • Broken pump: If the motor for the condensate pump burns out, it won’t be able to effectively move the water out of the pan, causing overflow.
  • Loose drain: The drain can become detached from the bottom of the condensate pan if it becomes too corroded. If the drain breaks free, it will leave a hole in the pan for water to drip through.

Leave the hard work of repairing your AC to our technicians. We’ll get your air conditioner back in great shape in no time.

Reach out to Carolina Climate Control when you need AC repairs. The Moose Is Loose in Your Neighborhood!

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