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Polar Bear Air Conditioning & Heating Inc. Blog

Has My AC Sprung a Leak?

woman-with-fanUsually when we talk about leaks in air conditioning systems, we may be talking about oil or, unfortunately for some, refrigerant. However, every now and then we get a call from a homeowner concerned that their air conditioner is actually leaking water. This is not only alar ng, but also perplexing. After all, it is not as though an air conditioner actually uses water in its operation, right?

Well, that doesn’t mean that you are seeing things if you notice water surrounding your indoor unit, nor does it mean that the water is leaking from elsewhere in the house and is just pooling here. The air conditioner may well be the source of this water. It just may not be leaking out of the system in the way that you are thinking.

Here are a few different potential causes of this leaking, and what they mean for your air conditioner in Alexandria

Melting Ice Could Be the Issue

Wow, an air conditioner that is so powerful that it actually freezes water? That sounds great, right? Well, actually, an air conditioner that develops ice on it is actually an air conditioner that is not only failing to function properly, but which is also at risk for serious damages. If your air conditioner’s evaporator coil is icing over, there are a few different issues that could be to blame. The first is a very simple fix: a dirty air filter.

How does a dirty air filter result in the icing of an air conditioner? Well, the whole cooling process hinges on the evaporation of refrigerant, which happens in the evaporator coil. When the refrigerant evaporates, it draws heat out of the air surrounding and passing over it. If an air filter is dirty enough, though, it can actually make it impossible for the coil to draw enough heat out of the air.

As heat is removed from the air, so too is moisture. This collects on the evaporator coil before dripping away. If the coil is not removing enough heat from the air, then it will get cold enough to freeze this condensation. When that condensation melts, it can melt so quickly that it winds up all over your floor. If your system is low on refrigerant due to a leak, the same thing can happen. However, this is a much more serious problem and can do serious damage to your system. A professional will have to find the leak, seal it, and recharge the system.

It Could Be a Drainage Backup

As we said above, water collects on the coil before dripping off. When it drips off, it lands in the condensate drain pan. From there it is removed from your home via the condensate drain line. If the line is blocked due to algal growth or other debris, then the water can back up. This is a serious problem, as water damage can occur and biological pollutants, such as mold, can thrive.

Schedule your air conditioning repairs with Polar Bear Air Conditioning & Heating Inc.

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