Why AC Units Leak
A leaking air conditioner is a red flag that something’s wrong with your system. Besides the inconvenience of having to clean water from the ground, leaking AC units can cause water damage, mold, and even a fire if the moisture gets near electrical equipment.
So why does it happen? Here are some possible reasons:
Frozen evaporator coils
If the evaporator coils form ice on them, this build-up can melt and overflow from your drain pan. There are three main causes of a frozen coil:
- Dirty filter: If your filter has a build-up of dust, it will slow the airflow through the coil, causing it to get too cold and form ice on the surface. Luckily, this one’s an easy fix. Simply clean or replace your filter and keep monitoring to make sure it never gets too dirty.
- Low pressure in refrigerant lines: If there is not enough refrigerant, the pressure will be too low, reducing the coil’s ability to remove heat from the air, which causes it to freeze. Low refrigerant can damage your compressor so turn off your unit and call a professional immediately. You might be leaking refrigerant.
- Fan problems: Your filter might be clean but the air flowing through your coil still isn’t enough. If you notice low airflow through the vents in addition to the frozen coil, your fan is likely the cause. Shut off your unit and call a professional to repair this problem.
Air conditioners do more than cool the air. They remove humidity as well, which forms condensate that has to be removed. Usually it happens without an issue but if your condensate is building up and overflowing, you might have condensate drainage problems. Here are three main reasons why:
- Blocked condensate drain: as with all drains, a blockage will cause a backup. Clear the drain if you can or call a technician to clean or replace the line if needed.
- Damaged drain pan: your drain pan might be cracked and leaking condensate. While you can temporarily repair a crack with sealant, it’s best to replace the drain pan completely.
- Broken condensate pump: depending on where your unit it, you might have a pump to remove condensate. If this pump is broken, water will build up and overflow. You’ll need to replace your pump to solve this problem.
Utah’s Most Wanted Techs at Western Heating & Air Conditioning are trained and ready to help you detect and identify the cause of the leak in your air conditioner. Our goal is to fix it right the first time, and help you experience a whole new level of cool comfort in your home. Give us a call at (801) 341-9970.