A dripping AC can be a nuisance, as well as a source of household damage. Dry air cools more efficiently than humid air. Therefore, the air-conditioning process condenses water vapor out of indoor air. A typical residential central air conditioner can generate up to 20 gallons of condensate per day during heavy summer use. Containing this volume of water and then conveying it into the household drain can present problems, including a dripping AC.

Issues related to water leakage from an air conditioner typically require a professional HVAC technician to determine the source of the water and then make necessary repairs. Here are some typical causes of a dripping AC:

Overflowing Drip Pan

The drip pan is located beneath the indoor air handler where water continuously drips off the AC evaporator coil. This water is diverted into a pipe that’s connected to the household drain system. If a blockage occurs in the drip pan or drain line, however, the pan overflows rapidly and water damage may result. Typical causes of blockages include the formation of algae or mold growth in the drip pan. A qualified service technician can clean the pan and remove obstructions. When required, antifungal tablets can be installed in the pan to prevent future blockages.

Refrigerant Loss

A low refrigerant charge in the air conditioner may cause the evaporator coil’s temperature to drop excessively. Consequently, layers of ice build up on coil surfaces. When the AC cycles off, ice melts rapidly and may create puddles around the air handler. An HVAC professional can check the refrigerant charge, locate and repair any leaks that are causing loss, then restore refrigerant to the proper level.

Low Airflow

When airflow through the indoor evaporator coil is insufficient, the coil temperature may drop into the freezing range. This is another cause of accumulating coil ice that may subsequently melt and drip outside the air handler.  The most common cause of low airflow is a dirty air filter. The air filter should be replaced every month during cooling season.

If you’re putting up with a dripping AC, contact Mowery Heating, Cooling and Plumbing for prompt, professional solutions.