Why AC Unit Leaks Water

Why AC Unit Leaks Water

When your air conditioner unit goes down for any reason, there is absolute frustration.  Especially if it is the middle of the hot and humid summer here in Houston, Texas, but the frustration level can be even higher if you find that there is a leak of some kind, like one that involves water.


The indoor part of your AC unit is usually the one that a water leak can happen.  They can be rather messy and could even cause significant water damage to your home.  This type of issue can also lead to more serious problems down the road if they are not addressed.


There are some common causes that can lead to water leaks:

  • Condensate Pump Issues – If your condensate pump is dirty or malfunctioning in some way, this can cause your AC unit to have a water leak and could potentially flood the area this part of the unit is located in.  If there is a continual leak that is not fixed, potential mildew and mold can grow and cause it to clog.
  • Drain Line is Clogged – Having your condensate drain pipe clogged can cause overflow in your drain pan.  This is the most common of causes for water leaks and tends to be the reason for many service calls during those high summer temperatures.  Dirt, debris, algae, and more can be the cause to clog this drain line.
  • Drain Line is Disconnected – If you find that the drain pipes were improperly installed, the fittings may not be secure on the pipes.  As time goes on, these fittings can loosen and cause the drain pipe to disconnect from the AC completely and cause it to drain somewhere else like your floor or ceiling.  There is a primary and secondary drain pipe, so finding out what one is affected would depend on that.


There are a few more potential causes of water leakage such as low refrigerant, no p-trap and air vent within the drain line to prevent water backup, clogged air filter, cracked condensate drain pan, or condensate buildup found in un-insulated ductwork.  A couple of the reasons there can be from your evaporator coil freezing up which will create its own source of water leaks.


There are ways to prevent water leaks and damage from the water leaks.  If you follow these tips, it can reduce the issue of water leaks.

  • Make sure to change or clean your air filters regularly.
  • Have a drain pan overflow shutoff switch installed that is equipped with a float.
  • Be sure that there is a p-trap and air vent in each drain line.
  • Have a safety pan placed under your AC to catch any drain pan overflow.
  • Make sure that there is no mold or mildew in your condensate pump, flushing it with 50/50 of bleach and water will help prevent that.
  • Making sure that you air conditioner has a secondary drain line, especially if it is one that has an air handler in the attic is recommended.
  • Make sure that you regularly check the refrigerant levels.
  • Make sure that all ductwork is or has been installed properly.
  • And last, be sure that you stay on top of scheduling your annual preventative maintenance, also known as your AC tune-up.


Making sure that these are done will help ensure prevention of any water leaks from happening within your home and also give you full operational ability and efficiency.


If your air conditioning system is not operating correctly or is in need of its annual maintenance to prevent potential issues, please contact us today to schedule your appointment.  Do not be strand in the blasting heat of Houston, Texas summer without a cool home.


Autumn Mechanical
18812 Tomato St.
Spring, TX 77379
(713) 864-8368
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