What should you do when your AC has a leak?

AC leaks are a common occurrence in many homes. Knowing how to troubleshoot this issue is essential as it gives homeowners peace of mind and restores the AC’s efficiency. However, it is necessary to understand the cause and find a solution for the specific reason before fixing the leak. AC leaks can be simple or complex. You may be able to fix some of the issues but may also require the intervention of an AC expert to improve the complicated causes. Below are a few practical ways to deal with AC leaks.

Drain Pan Missing or Cracked

You will find the AC’s drain pan underneath the evaporator coil. It is responsible for collecting the condensate from your indoor AC unit. When the drain pan is missing, rusted, or cracked, the condensate will have nowhere to go. Consequently, it will flow out, causing the leak. It would be best to use a wet and dry vacuum to clean the overflowing drain pan and then inspect the pan to identify where the cracks could be.

Once you find it, you could use a sealant to fix the drain pan temporarily. However, the water seal may not hold for long. Consider replacing the damaged pan instead. There are two drain pans. One is removable and the other one permanently fixed. If you need to replace the permanent or primary one, call the HVAC professional, especially since there may need to weld it in place. The removable/auxiliary pan can be replaced as a DIY project since it’s not complicated.

Clogged Drain Systems

Your AC comes with a drain system or drain line that easily clogs with fungi and algae. When the drain line is clogged, the AC will leak and cause more serious issues. This is a potential DIY project since you can fix it yourself. You can try pouring 6 ounces of vinegar down the drain line to kill the fungi and algae and take care of the issue.

Alternatively, use a vacuum cleaner to drain the pipes. If these options do not work, call the HVAC professional to assist you. Most modern AC systems have an automatic shut-off valve that switches the AC off when the condensate lines or air filters are clogged. This makes it easy to troubleshoot and fix the issues.

Clogged Air Filters

Make sure to change your air filters every one to three months to avoid clogging. Unfortunately, when filters block, they lead to airflow restriction, which brings up more issues. One of these is that the condenser coils will freeze and start dripping the extra water.

Whenever you notice frozen evaporator coils, switch off the AC unit immediately. The issue will resolve itself after some time. However, to prevent this from recurring, change filters regularly. Besides that, ensure that registers and vents are not blocked. If these measures do not resolve the issue, you may be dealing with a low refrigerant charge. This requires professional intervention. Call your HVAC technician to assist with this.

AC leaks may be familiar, but they are also easy to handle. All you have to do is trace the cause and address them. However, if you have no idea how to handle such a situation, ensure you contact a professional HVAC technician to assist. The worst thing you can do about a leaking AC is nothing since this could easily compound the issue and cause other secondary problems such as ceiling and wall leaks, especially if the AC is installed on the ceiling.

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