Are you wondering if there is a way to fix a leaking air conditioner? Air conditioners can leak for several reasons, and fortunately, there are things you can do to remedy the situation.
Depending on the reasons behind the leak, you can resolve it by yourself if it is not too complicated. However, if it is too complex, you may need to call a professional; check here to know more. Here is all you need to know about a leaking air conditioner and how to fix it.
Why is your air conditioning leaking?
You can expect your air conditioning to leak a little from the outer part of the unit, not from the inside system. The outside leaking is due to the regular operation of the air conditioner. It results from the inside unit having an evaporator coil responsible for cooling the warm air.
When warm air blows over the coil, condensation forms, creating water droplets and moisture. Droplets and moisture are collected into a water pan that leads to a drain line outside the house.
While this is normal, it is less usual for water dripping inside the house.
Here are some of the most common reasons if that happens:
1. Clogged drain line
Debris, dirt, mold, or dust can clog the drain line blocking the water from traveling outside. As a result, the condense water accumulates until it leaks inside the house. The way to resolve it is to remove the things blocking the drain line, typically with a wet vacuum cleaner or other methods.
2. Dirty air filters
Dirty filters can block airflow and make the air conditioner work harder. Besides the fact that the air conditioner can get damaged, airflow is not flowing correctly to the unit’s evaporator coil. If the air is blocked, the coil becomes very cold and will end up freezing.
When the coil melts, water can leak. Filters should be checked routinely for dirt and should be changed every month or two, depending on the quality of the filters and on how much you are using the air conditioner.
3. Low refrigerant
Low refrigerant levels inside the AC unit are responsible for lowering pressure inside the air conditioner. With more downward pressure, the coil will freeze, resulting in the generation of extra water.
You can figure out that the refrigerant is low because the air conditioning is not cooling your house effectively. In addition, you can hear an unusual hissing or a bubbling sound.
4. Air leaks
Air leaks are also responsible for water leaks. Typically, the air that goes to the air conditioner is supposed to pass through the vents. However, if the air is not passing through the vents as it should, there is also an air leak situation.
The air conditioner is not working at its best performance level with an air leaking situation. The result can be water leaks.
5. Pump non functioning
The air conditioner has a pump under the cooling coil, and it is responsible for draining out water to prevent leaks. However, water will drip if the pump is broken or otherwise not functioning (for example, because of accumulation of debris or dirt).
6. Incorrect air conditioner installation
If the air conditioner is not installed correctly, to begin with, it can cause water leaks. Therefore, the front part should always be cooler than the rear part so that the water can drain properly to prevent leaks.
In addition, the installation needs to be done with a proper inclination to facilitate the system to drain the water.
7. Damaged drain pan
Typically, the drain pan is made out of metal, and it can begin to rust due to contact with water. If that happens, the pan can get damaged or become rusty. A rusty pan can prevent water from leaving the system, and it will leak.
8. Weather conditions
If you keep the air conditioner turned on while the weather outside is cool, or otherwise below 60 degrees Fahrenheit, the cooling coil can end up freezing, and when the ice is melting, the air conditioner will leak.
How to fix a leaking air conditioner
If you experience any leak from the air conditioner unit, you should not ignore it because if a broken part causes it, the problem can worsen and damage the entire unit. Simple issues can be resolved with cleaning or quick remedies, but be prepared to call for help if necessary.
If your air conditioner is leaking, you can do the following:
1. Complete cleaning of the drain lines
The first thing to check is the water pain and the draining system. Regular maintenance of the draining lines is necessary to remove rust and dirt. However, the draining line can be cleaned by yourself with patience.
Here are the steps to follow:
- Make sure the air conditioning system is turned off
- Locate the condensate pan ( you have to unscrew the air conditioning pan)
- Look under the evaporating coil
- Soak the excessive water
- Use a wet vacuum cleaner to remove the clog
- Do it repeatedly until everything is removed
- Use vinegar ( or other suitable product) to remove stubborn dirt
- Use clean water to flush out the pipe
2. Clean the coils, evaporator, and fan
In addition to the draining system, you have to care for the evaporator, fan coils, and condenser coil. To lean the evaporator, you can always use a vacuum cleaner and an appropriate brush.
The fan is an essential part of the air conditioning system and has the purpose of blowing air out in specific directions. To clean it, once you access it using a screwdriver to remove any cover, use a solution (possibly a spray product) suitable to remove dirt.
Leave the cleaning product on the fan until it is effective, and remove it with warm water. The condenser coils need to be cleaned as well by removing the outer cover and using a brush to remove the dirt (with the help of a cleanser).If none of this resolves the problem, you should call a professional.
Air conditioners should not leak when they are working correctly. A leak is a sign of a problem. Often it can be resolved with cleaning or simple remedies such as getting new filters. However, it can also signify a more significant issue like a broken part. When not fixed immediately, the entire system can get damaged.
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