Is Your Air Conditioning Leaking Water? Here Are 8 Possible Causes

An air conditioner (AC) keeps your house cool and comfortable by removing heat and humidity from the air. As the AC extracts humidity from the air, it produces condensate, or water, in your furnace or air handler. This water is typically kept in a drain pan and sent through piping into your home’s drain system.

Unfortunately, damaged pipes or sludge buildup may cause the piping to become clogged. When this happens, water backs up in the drain pan in your furnace or air handler. It can then leak into your home. This is namely troublesome if your furnace or air handler is installed in the attic or above a finished ceiling.

In a majority of homes, municipal codes require a secondary or safety drain pan that is put underneath the furnace or air handler. This secondary drain pan uses piping that is routed to the outside of the home. Typically, the outlet of the pipe is placed above the outside of a window so it’s more noticeable if water starts draining from this pipe outlet. It is not normal for this to occur. If you see water spilling from piping on the outside of your home, this is likely evidence the primary drain is clogged and water is now draining from the safety drain pan.

Here are the most frequent causes for why your AC is leaking water and how to take care of the issue. Some homes can also possess a safety device that will automatically turn off your AC if the drain becomes clogged. In this case your system will stop cooling except if the drain is cleaned of any obstructions. Regardless, if you spot water leaking, make sure to set your thermostat to "off" to avoid any other water damage and get in touch with a Midland Air Service Experts service provider to correct the issues.

Leaking air conditioners frequently do best with professional help, which is why we’re here to assist you at Midland Air Service Experts. We proudly deliver Expert air conditioning repair across North America, backed by a 100% Satisfaction Guarantee.*

1. Condensate Drain Is Blocked

When hot, humid air moves over the evaporator coil, water appears on the chilly metal surface. At the end of the process, the water drains into a pan beneath the indoor coil inside the furnace or air handler. As the cooling sequence continues, the condensate flows out of the pan and into drain piping before the pan overflows.

However, mold, mineral deposits, dirt and other debris can clog the drain. This prevents the water from moving away correctly. Leave the unclogging process to an Expert like Midland Air Service Experts for the peace of mind it’s done properly and without causing more damage. Service Experts can also add a safety device that will autonomously shut off your AC if the drain becomes backed up again later on, thus avoiding water damage inside your home. Of course, regular maintenance on your AC will help keep your condensate drain clear and unhindered.

2. Drain Line Is Disconnected

While not very common, the drain line connection to the drain pan could become loose or disconnected. This may occur if someone is working nearby the unit or when changing out the air filter. AC leaks might occur when the drain line is lose from the pan. Check your AC to determine if the drain line is still leading to the coil drain pan. If it is no longer connected, we suggest calling an HVAC technician to take care of this issue immediately. Schedule an appointment with Midland Air Service Experts today.

3. Condensate Pump Isn’t Working

Some air conditioners need a condensate pump to efficiently drain the water. These pumps are compulsory when the home’s drain system is located above the AC unit. Even if the drain is unobstructed, water could build up in the pan and leak out if the condensate pump is not functioning. First, make sure that the pump is currently powered. If that’s not the case, the AC leak may be due to a broken condensate pump. You should check with an air conditioning contractor like Midland Air Service Experts to resolve the issue.

4. Evaporator Coil Is Grubby or Broken

If you see little drips in favor of a more substantial puddle close to the outside of your furnace or air handler, water may be splashing off the evaporator coil compared to properly flowing into the drain pan and condensate line. This can take place if the coils are soiled, or if holes in the insulation protecting the coils redirect the water. The best approach to keep the evaporator coil from going downhill is to keep up with annual air conditioning maintenance using a Midland Air Service Experts membership.

5. Low Refrigerant Level

If you uncover a leak and the AC isn't cooling properly, the refrigerant level may be low because of a leak. Air conditioners depend on refrigerant to produce cold air, so getting it inspected thoroughly during seasonal maintenance is extremely useful for the health of your unit. Without adequate refrigerant, the evaporator coils may freeze over and cause the drain pan to overflow as they thaw. Despite some expectations, your AC does not need to be recharged unless there is a leak. The system is sealed and recharging is only needed when a leak appears in the system. Call Midland Air Service Experts as soon as you can to take care of AC refrigerant issues quickly.

6. Dirty Air Filter

Your air conditioner's filter has to be changed regularly to encourage proper airflow. Without adequate ventilation, the evaporator coils could become too cold and freeze. The evaporator coils will then thaw, causing excess water to fill in the drain pan—potentially causing an overflow. To resolve this, try changing your air filter. If the problem doesn’t go away, more repairs may be needed. Thankfully, HVAC technicians from Midland Air Service Experts are ready to serve you, ensuring the problem gets fixed.

7. Outdoor Temperature Is Too Cold to Run AC

Air conditioners are designed to be used during warm weather. Running your AC when outdoor temperatures are 60 degrees Fahrenheit or below could cause the evaporator coils to freeze. Once thawed, the water and ice will drop off the evaporator coils and possibly result in an overflow because of ice blocking the drain pan opening. If a water leak persists, schedule a Midland Air Service Experts technician backed by our 100% service guarantee* to help solve the problem.

8. Damaged Drip Pan

Air conditioners are built to last, but nothing survives forever. If you possess an AC that is 12 years or older, the drip pan could be damaged or corroded after years of normal use. If the drain pan has holes in it, a water leak can appear as condensate seeps directly through it. Midland Air Service Experts can replace the drain pan and ensure your AC gets back to working like it’s supposed to.

Our Experts Can Handle All Your Air Conditioning Repair Needs

Whatever the reason why your AC is leaking water, Midland Air Service Experts can fix the problem. We’ll troubleshoot and fix your air conditioner, getting it back to running again without delay.

Our technicians are highly trained, knowledgeable and certified to perform exceptional work. We have full confidence in our repairs—in fact, we back up everything we perform with a one-year 100% Satisfaction Guarantee!*

We’ll even recommend a worry-free membership plan. This could help you catch AC issues, like water leaks, sooner so you can avoid future breakdowns while keeping your house comfortable.

Contact us at 803-399-7208 to schedule your air conditioning appointment in North America today!

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