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Water Restoration March 18, 2016

How Do I Prevent Air Conditioning Water Damage?

Your air conditioning unit is susceptible to leaks, which can lead to water damage, if you do not perform several maintenance tasks periodically. The good news is that these routine tasks are rather easy to do and do not involve hiring a professional most of the time. Here are the most frequent causes for A/C leaks with tips on how to fix and prevent them:

  • The drain line is clogged – the drain line is a pipe which collects the condensed water that your A/C unit has produced and transports it outside your house. Sometimes, the drain line gets clogged with algae, dirt, mineral deposits and even mold or mildew, causing water to overflow into your home. Tips:
    • If the drain pipes are clogged, try using a wet-dry vacuum to suck out the water and debris from the outdoor drain pipe.
    • To prevent drain lines from clogging, pour a mix of half warm water, half bleach into the pipe once every 4 to 6 months, but make sure the pipes are not clogged first.
    • Consider installing an overflow shut off device on the drain line to automatically turn off the A/C unit if the drain line backs up.
  • The overflow drain pan is damaged – the drain pan collects any water that has overflowed due to a clogged drain line. Over time, drain pans made of metal or plastic may get damaged, resulting in leaks and water damage. Tips:
    • If you notice leaks near the drain pan, carefully inspect it for damage using a flashlight.
    • Consider patching up small holes or cracks using epoxy glue or replacing the pan entirely.
  • The air filter is dirty – air filters should be replaced once every 1 to 2 months (every month during the cooling season); failing to do so will restrict the airflow to the evaporator’s coils. Consequently, water can freeze on the coils and, when it melts, it will drip water. Change the filters periodically to prevent this from happening.

Washing machines can also overflow and cause substantial water damage. Take a look at these tips to learn what to do in case your washing machine has overflowed. For professional fire, water and mold restoration services, contact your local PuroClean office.