Why Is My AC Leaking?
Wondering why there’s a mysterious puddle of water on your floor? – It could be your AC leaking. Air conditioning systems are a large part of our everyday lives.
They keep us cool, comfortable, and even sane for those who can’t handle the heat, but what do you do when something goes wrong?
Air conditioning units require regular maintenance and care for proper performance.
When that doesn’t happen, you begin to experience poor operation, malfunctions, breakdowns, and even a rise in your electric bill.
Problems like AC leaks aren’t uncommon and can be caused by several different issues.
The question is… why is your AC leaking, and what you should do about it.
In this article, we will be discussing several reasons your air conditioning system may be leaking water.
So hang tight, throw down a couple of towels, and follow along.
Common Causes of Air Conditioning Leaks
- Condensate pump malfunction: Condensate pumps are designed to pump excess water out of your air conditioner’s condenser pan. If the condensate pump malfunctions or gets broken, your condenser pan will begin to fill with drainage, causing overflows and leaks.
- Filthy or damaged coils: Neglecting your annual HVAC maintenance will result in clogged, dirty, and even damaged coils. When your air conditioning unit’s drainage cannot properly travel down the coils into the drain pan (due to damage or debris build-up), the water is diverted in another direction, resulting in leaks.
- Frozen evaporator coil: Do you see layers of ice over your unit’s evaporator coils? When the evaporator coil of your AC unit freezes due to reduced airflow or refrigerant issues, it can eventually thaw and cause water to leak. Low refrigerant levels, clogged air filters, or malfunctioning blower fans can contribute to the freezing of the evaporator coil. Addressing the underlying cause, such as cleaning or replacing air filters, fixing fan issues, or recharging refrigerant levels, will help prevent further coil freezing and subsequent leaks. Frozen coils are a common cause of air conditioning leaks. Although common, if your air conditioning system remains frozen for too long, it can fry your unit’s compressor, which isn’t a cheap fix.
- Clogged condensate drain line: One of the most common causes of AC leaks is a clogged or blocked condensate drain line. Over time, dirt, debris, and algae can accumulate in the drain line, restricting proper water drainage. This can result in water backing up and leaking from your AC unit. To resolve this issue, you can try clearing the drain line using a wet/dry vacuum or a specialized condensate line cleaning kit. If the clog persists, it’s recommended to seek professional assistance.
- Damaged or Disconnected Condensate Pan: The condensate pan is designed to collect water that drips from the evaporator coil. If the pan becomes cracked, damaged, or disconnected, water can leak from the AC unit. Inspect the condensate pan for any visible signs of damage and repair or replace it as needed. Additionally, ensure that the pan is properly aligned and securely connected to prevent future leaks.
- Dirty air filter: Dirty air filters can cause a lot of problems for your HVAC system. If your air filter accumulates debris build-up and becomes even partially clogged, it can cause your evaporator coils to freeze over, which will result in excess water drainage and leaking from your air conditioning system. For clogged and dirty air filters, change the filter and give your unit some time to acclimate and regulate airflow again. It is essential to replace your HVAC unit’s air filter at least once a month for proper airflow and optimal cooling performance throughout the life of your system.
- Improper Installation or Insufficient Insulation: AC units need proper air conditioning installation to ensure efficient operation. If your AC unit was not installed correctly or lacks sufficient insulation, condensation can occur on the evaporator coil or the refrigerant lines, leading to water leakage. In such cases, it’s best to consult a professional HVAC technician to evaluate the installation and insulation of your system and make any necessary adjustments or repairs.
- Overloaded or Incorrectly Sized AC Unit: An AC unit that is too large for the space it’s cooling can cause short cycling, where the unit turns on and off frequently. This can result in excessive condensation and water leakage. On the other hand, an AC unit that is too small may struggle to cool the space efficiently, leading to prolonged operation and increased condensation. Consulting with an HVAC professional can help determine if your AC unit is properly sized for your home and make necessary adjustments if needed.
AC Leaking Water? Call Cruz!
AC leaks should never be ignored, as they can lead to water damage and potentially indicate underlying issues with your system.
It’s important to address AC leaks promptly to ensure the continued efficiency and longevity of your cooling system. If you’re uncertain or unable to identify the cause of the leak, it’s always advisable to seek professional assistance from a qualified HVAC technician to diagnose and resolve the problem effectively.
At Cruz Air & Electric, we specialize in ensuring our customers get the best out of their HVAC systems.