Have you ever wondered what goes into a heating or air conditioning system for a large office building or another large building like a mall or a school? My name is Evelyn, and I am an HVAC architect. I design heating and air conditioning systems for large, corporate buildings. Making sure that a large building with many rooms or offices is efficiently heated and cooled is a very large job and is much more complicated than simply heating or cooling a home. This blog will educate the reader on how heating and cooling jobs this large are designed and completed.
The AC condensate lines are meant to transport the moisture condensed by the AC during its operations so that it can be properly drained. Clogging in the AC lines is not good for your system. You should suspect clogged AC lines in the following scenarios.
The Drain Pan Is Full
An AC must produce some water, even if it is operating as usual. The main source of water is the moisture the AC pulls out of the air since this is another way in which the AC cools your house. This is why ACs are fitted with drain pans to catch hold any water produced by the system's operations. A typical drain pan should be able to handle water produced by the system without any problem. Therefore, you should suspect something is wrong if the drain pan is full of water.
Standing Water near the Drain Line
In some cases, you will only suspect that the AC lines are clogged if there is water around the air handler base or if the area is moist. In such a case, the drain pan is too full to handle any more water. The AC is condensing, and it is forced to overflow onto the surface. This is usually the case with extremely serious cases of clogging.
Signs of Water Damage
In cases of minimal clogging, the water leakage might not overflow to the extent that it can be noticed by someone who isn't looking. However, the minimal spilling, presence of moisture, or even the increased humidity around the unit may strip produce some damage. For example, you may notice foggy floors or damaged paint or flooring around the area.
Depending on how keen you are or where your AC is located, it might take you a while before noticing its blocked lines. That may give mold ample time to grow since mold thrives in moist places. Therefore, you should suspect a clogged drain line if the area around the air handler or even parts of the air handler is moldy.
No Cooling from the AC
If you don't inspect your AC on a regular basis or if you aren't too concerned with its operation, then you may only suspect a malfunction when it stops cooling your house. This can happen because modern AC systems are designed to stop operating when their drain lines are clogged. The water sensor mechanism shuts down the AC if it senses a clogged drain line to prevent water-related damage.
Call a heating and air contractor if you experience any of these issues.