Tips for Keeping Your A/C Condensate Line Flowing Freely

With the hot weather upon us, your home’s central air conditioner will be working hard to keep your home cool. In order for it to work efficiently and reliably, the A/C requires regular professional maintenance, as well as some basic homeowner maintenance tasks. One of those is keeping the condensate line clear of blockages. A clogged A/C condensate line can back up into the drain pan under the evaporator coil and cause extensive water damage.

What the A/C Condensate Line Does

Before we explain how to keep the line clear, it’s useful to know what role the A/C condensate line plays in cooling your home. As refrigerant is pumped through the inside evaporator coil, it transitions from a liquid to a gas, absorbing heat energy and moisture from household air. This creates cool, dry air. While the refrigerant carries the heat outside to be released from the condensing coil, the moisture drains into a pan under the evaporator coil, then flows from the pan through a line, eventually draining out of the house. Over time, dirt, algae and even mold can clog up the A/C condensate line.

Here’s How to Clean It

You’ll want to do this job once or twice a year, or better yet, have your trusted A/C technician perform the task during annual maintenance. Turn off the A/C at the thermostat, then remove the panel from the inside A/C unit. You’ll see the evaporator coil and underneath it a drain pan. If the pan is full of water, it means the line is probably clogged. Take a wet/dry vac and clean the drain pan. Now find where the condensate line or pipe leaves the house, probably near the outside unit. If there’s a 90-degree fitting at the end of the drain line, removing it may clear the clog. If not, use the wet/dry vac to suck the clog out of the line.

If this doesn’t seem to work, or if you’d rather have a pro perform the task, please contact us at Beyer Boys. We provide quality A/C service to the greater San Antonio area.

Our goal is to help educate our customers in the greater San Antonio, Texas area about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems).

Credit/Copyright Attribution: “alexwhite/Shutterstock”

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