Wednesday, November 30, 2016

Repairing a Clogged Condensate Drain Line

There’s no denying that air conditioners are complex appliances, which often require the intervention of a professional when it comes time for repairs. Yet certain air conditioning repairs are basic enough that even relative amateurs can accomplish them. If you would like to learn more about one such repair for fixing a leaky AC, read on. This article will discuss how--and why--to clear out a clogged drain line.

The Problem 

A running air conditioner produces a good deal of water, in the form of condensation. This condensation forms on the evaporator coils as the frigid refrigerant flows through them. The water then drips down into the condensate drain pan, which carries it to a drain line leading safely away from the air conditioner.

Over time, however, debris, build-up, and even algae act to form blockages within the condensate line. This causes the water to back up in the drain pan, eventually spilling over the sides and manifesting as a leak.

The Solution 

Fixing this problem is relatively simple. To begin, shut off the power to your air conditioner and remove the outer grill from the condenser in your yard. To do this, you’ll need to find the grill’s attachment points and loosen them up with either a screwdriver or a wrench.

Once you’ve got the grill lifted free, you should be able to easily identify the drain pan, which is comprised of a flat metal rectangle. At one corner you will see the hole that leads to the drain line. Boil up a kettle of water and then pour it carefully and slowly into this hole. The boiling hot water is often enough to loosen up and blockages.

You may also use a pipe cleaner of the appropriate thickness to help remove more stubborn build up. Chances are this will restore proper functionality to the drain line, and thus eliminate your nagging leak. If not, feel free to contact J.R. Perkins Heating & Cooling, an HVAC company that services the Phoenix AZ area including Scottsdale, for a professional evaluation.

JR Perkins is the first heating and air conditioning company in the East Valley. To learn more please visit our website at or call (480) 422-4437.