What is an AC Drain Line?

Learn more about your AC Condensate Drain Line and How to Prevent Water Damage

Here in the south most of our air handlers are located in our attic space.  Often times we forget the units are up there until we find water staining our ceilings.  By this point, the condensate line has become clogged, overflowed into the overflow pan and is now leaking onto the attic floor. How can you prevent this from happening?    


What is a Condensate Drain Line

The condensate drain line (also called condensate line) allows water to exit the air handler to the outside of your house.  As hot air passes over the evaporator coils in your air handler, the coils remove humidity from the air and converts it into water.  The water accumulates in the condensate drain pan. Then the water exits the pan through the condensate line.  Normally the line is made from PVC and runs to the outside of your house near your condenser.       

Why the Condensate Drain Line gets Clogged

Over time algae and other debris builds up in the drain pan and condensate line.  This is typically caused from water sitting in the drain pan which is in the hot attic, creating the perfect environment for algae to grow.  Eventually the algae and debris clogs the condensate line, causing water to back up and leak on the attic floor. 

How Can You Prevent Water Damage From a Condensate Drain Line

There are several products and steps you can take to help prevent a condensate line from clogging.  You can have a secondary flood stop installed on your HVAC system.  The flood stop is installed on the drain line. When water starts building up in the overflow pan, the floodstop will automatically turn off your HVAC system preventing water from continuing to accumulate. 

In addition, you can put algae tablets in the condensate pan.  The tablets will help prevent algae from growing in the water in the pan.  You should clean the drain line often as a preventive measure, especially during the hot summer months.  A simple way to do this is to put a mixture of Clorox water down the drain, if it is not clogged.    

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Your Condensate Line is Clogged and You Need Help

If you find water leaking onto your ceiling from the upstairs air handle and need professional help, contact us today, 1-843-353-0461.  Our HVAC Technicians will test your system and unclog your drain line, ensuring everything is functioning as it should.  In addition, we can install secondary flood stop to ensure you do not have a water damage again! 

customer review

“We had an outstanding experience with Dependable Service Plumbing & Air in our remodeling of our master bathroom. In addition to their exceptional work, they were very concientious in their clean-up to include the cleaning of our hardwood floors while on their hands and knees. They arrived when we were told to expect them. They made it a point to ask us if their work was completed the way we wanted. We greatly appreciated their professionalism.” –- Theresa G.

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