What Causes Air Conditioners to Leak Water

In the course of its normal operation, an air conditioner removes moisture from the air as it removes heat from your home. This is why leaks can be a common issue with air conditioners, and why checking for leaks is part of a standard maintenance routine. However, a constant presence of water pooling around or under an air conditioning unit is a red flag.

What causes air conditioners to leak water?

  • Improper installation: The rear drain allows water to filter out of the unit. This is why it is important to install at a slight inclination, with the front of the unit situated higher than the rear of the unit. The incline doesn’t need to be dramatic; having the rear just 1 inch lower than the front will be sufficient.
  • Drain blockage: Any blockage of the drain hole will prevent water from flowing freely out of the A/C unit.
  • Broken pumps: Pump problems will be hard to spot without the trained eye of a professional. Dismantling the air conditioner on your own is not advised because you could cause damage to the unit (or yourself).
  • Air leaks: Make sure the unit is properly sealed. Any leakage will cause condensation.
  • Outside temperature: Running the air conditioner when it is cooler outside can cause water to pool because it won’t evaporate as quickly. This may be especially common at night. To minimize this problem, try turning off the unit when it is cooler outside or just use the fan function to circulate air.

For more information on what causes air conditioners to leak, or advice on other aspects of improving the comfort of your home, contact your local experts at Davis Air Conditioning & Heating.

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