Air Conditioner Leaking Water

Wondering why your air conditioner is leaking water? Well there could be a handful reasons why there is water leaking from your air conditioner. For many people they will have to call for service to get the situation fixed, for the Hvac Technician they are going to have to figure out the cause of the water leak, which can sometimes be a tedious task, and expensive for the customer.


Water is Leaking from You Air Conditioner – Why?


First off if water is coming from your air conditioner, it’s going to be from the air handler in almost every case.  So let’s cover some of the reasons that you are may be seeing water coming from the ceiling where you air handler is located.

Clogged Condensation Drain Line

Clogged Condensate Drain LineFor those that live in hot humid climates this is a major problem mostly formed from algae build up in the condensation drain line. Other times critters such as frogs, snakes and lizards may crawl up into the condensation line and prevent the condensation made from the air handler to drain out properly.

This is the most common reason that you may have water leaking from your air conditioner, and usually the easiest to fix. This problem can really become prevented by having a company perform preventative maintenance on your Hvac system.  Preventative maintenance is essential when wanting to keep your condensate drain line clean.

If the condensation drain line is not pitched properly, or if it has a vent that does not extend above the drain pan, or installed after the drain trap, could cause issues with the condensation backing up and not draining properly, thus creating the water leak.


Cracked Drain Pan or Loose Fitting

Drain pans on an air conditioning systems collect the condensation that the evaporator coil makes during the refrigeration cycle, and if leveled and angled properly that condensation flows through the condensate drain line.

Unfortunately sometimes drain pans crack, especially on units located in closets where people want to store stuff, and especially like to crack on Tranes and Carriers….. though besides storing stuff next to the condensation piping and bumping into the piping, the other reasons condensate drain pans crack is from poor installation. Other times units are not leveled properly and then sometimes it’s just can’t be avoided.

Other reasons you may have water leaking from your air handler is because it’s not leveled right, this is especially important with Rheem residential air conditioning units.


Poor Air Flow – Low on Freon

Clogged Air Filter HVACBoth of these problems can result in the a/c coils freezing up, creating a big block of ice and eventually melting so fast that it overflows the drain pan causing a water leak. Lack of air flow can come from dirty evaporator coils, clogged air filter, or even a restriction in the metering device or line set will also cause evaporator coils to freeze up.

If your system is low on Freon, you have a refrigerant leak somewhere in the system, or the system was poorly installed from the beginning. Should any one of these situations occur besides a clogged air filter or dirty evaporator coils, you will need to call for service to get the problem rectified.


Bottom line is if your air conditioning system is installed correctly, with the proper air flow and adequate duct sizing for the size of the home, you shouldn’t run into any of these problems. There are also some situations where undersized duct work can cause water to leak from your air conditioner, as the fan motor may pull condensation off the coils causing water build up in the air handler.


As always I am open for more suggestions and comments for any other reasons that an air conditioner may be leaking water, as I am just a simple technician that isn’t afraid to learn the trade better.