In the middle of the summer, one of the last things you want to happen is for your air conditioning to stop working. Not only will your home quickly reach uncomfortable temperatures, but because it may qualify as an emergency call, you may have to pay more for your repairs. One of the things that you want to check prior to calling for service is your drain line. If it is clogged, it can easily shut your system down, and if your drain pan overflows, a clogged line can also cause substantial water damage to your home. Knowing what to look for when your drain is clogged, as well as how to unclog it, is a great way to help to eliminate an air conditioning emergency call.
What Is A Condensate Drain Line?
While one of the most important jobs that your air conditioning unit performs is to cool your home, it is also responsible for pulling the humidity or moisture out of your home's air. When this warm, moisture-laden air passes over your cool condensing coils, condensation builds up on the coils, which then drips into the drain pan. This water is then carried from your drain pan to the outside of your home through the use of a small tube or drain line. This is known as your condensate drain line.
How Does Your Drain Line Get Clogged?
Along with the water that drips off of your condensing coils, there is also dust, dirt, and other airborne debris. Over a period of time, you may even get a buildup of mold and mildew in your pan, as well as in your line. Any of these, or a combination of all of these can cause your drain lines to become clogged over time.
One of the easiest ways to check to see if your line is clogged is to check your drain pan to see if you have water standing in your pan. If you are unable to get to your pan, or unable to see your pan due to its location in your home, check the outside of your home to see if you see water dripping from the drain line.
The amount of water you should see will depend on the level of humidity in the air, as well as the difference in temperatures between the inside and outside. You may see anywhere from less than 5 gallons per day to more than 20 gallons per day.
Keeping your AC filter clean can help your filter capture more of the airborne particles that could otherwise end up in the water that is draining from your system. Not only will changing your filter help reduce the chances of your drain lines getting clogged, but it will also help to reduce the amount of energy your system uses and extend the life of your system.
How Can You Unclog Your Drain Line?
Where the clog is located will determine on how hard it is to reach and remove. If your drain is still partially open, but draining slowly, you may want to clear the drain by pouring a cup of white vinegar or a cup of diluted bleach through your line. Both will help to remove any mold, mildew, and dirt that is located in your line. Make sure to place a container below the outside opening to keep the chemicals from landing on any plants that may be watered by the draining solution.
Try suctioning out your drain line by using your wet/dry vacuum. Due to the difference in size between your drain line and your vacuum, you may have to use duct tape to create a tight seal around the end of your vacuum. This will help you to produce the highest level of suction. If you are unable to clear your drain line, call and have your air conditioning unit serviced. The service technician will be able to unclog your line, as well as check your unit for anything else that may be causing your system to stop working. Contact a company like Shivani Refrigeration & Air Conditioning for more information.