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3 Reasons Your AC is Dripping Water (And Why You Shouldn’t Ignore It)

Technician speaking with woman while servicing air conditioning unit
Woman watching a technician work on her outside AC unit.

Occasionally, the technicians here at Schneller Knochelmann Plumbing, Heating & Air grab a bite with a few local contractors and talk shop. Last week, we spoke to a carpenter friend who had to rebuild the entire window frame in a big colonial house. So naturally, we asked what could have caused damage excessive enough to warrant a full replacement. This house, well-known among us, was solid as a rock, and we hadn’t heard of any heavy weather in weeks. 

 “It was their air conditioner,” the carpenter reported regretfully. “The thing was leaking buckets from the back, and it rotted the wood. The homeowner didn’t even realize it until their hand almost went clean through the sill.” 

 As you can imagine, we all shuddered internally. Leaks are a common problem with AC units but often go untreated because people think they’re normal or not a big deal. But AC leaks are a serious problem, and we don’t want you to end up having to call the carpenters for anything but a social visit. That’s why we’ve put together this short list of reasons why your AC might be dripping water.

3 Possible Causes of an Air Conditioner Leak 

  1. The air filter is clogged. AC units depend on good airflow to function correctly. If an AC’s filter is clogged, this restricts air and often causes the evaporator coils in the unit to freeze. They then begin dripping excess water and prevent refrigerants from taking in the heat from your home. To mitigate this risk, clean your AC’s air filter at least once every 90 days, and make sure you’re not obstructing any vents on the unit. 
  2. The drain line is clogged. Many things can clog your AC’s condensate drain line, including mold, fungi, volatile organic compounds, and other threats to air quality. Without the proper release mechanism, water from the AC will find other exit routes, leading to leaks. To prevent this, pour a cup of vinegar into your drain line every quarter to combat any organic buildup. You can also try clearing out clogs manually with a wet/dry vac. 
  3. The drain pan is cracked or missing. The drain pan sits under your AC unit’s evaporator coils to collect moisture as it builds up. If it’s damaged or missing, the water won’t drain outside and might drip indoors.

Got an AC leak? Schneller Knochelmann can help!

If you take one thing away from this post, it should be this – the worst thing you can do about an AC leak is nothing at all. If the DIY methods outlined above don’t solve your leak, Schneller Knochelmann can help. We are a family-run business in operation since 1928 and stand ready and waiting to fix any AC unit in the region. Call us at 513.407.4424 in Ohio or 859.757.1877 in Kentucky, or contact us online today to schedule service. 

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