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Common Problems with the Condensate Tray and Drain

Your air conditioner keeps you cool by relying on a refrigeration cycle to remove the heat from the air in your home. And while this helps lower the temperature, this same process also helps keep you more comfortable by lowering humidity levels. When there is too much moisture in the air, the evaporator coil helps to control moisture levels, while the condensate tray and drain help moisture evacuate from your home.

How It Works

The evaporator coil helps refrigerant to absorb heat from the inside air so that it can release outdoors. Additionally, as warm air blows over the very cool evaporator coil, the process of condensation leads to water droplets forming on the outside of the coil. Water then drips into the condensate pan, a shallow, angled tray underneath the evaporator coil with a hole at the bottom that allows the condensation to drain outdoors.

What Goes Wrong

  • Condensate Pan Is Misaligned: The condensate tray has to be at the correct angle so that water can flow easily into the drain. Sometimes, the technician does not properly position the tray, or it may get knocked out of place over time. If this is the case, water may leak into your home.
  • Clogged Condensate Drain: A clogged condensate drain may also cause water to leak from the tray. Over time, debris may fill up the drain pipe, causing water to back up into the pan. This is problematic for a couple of reasons. For one, the water may flow into your home. However, it may also attract mold and mildew which could cause health problems for some of your family members.
  • Damaged Tray: Finally, the tray may tear or become cracked over time, causing water to leak out of the pan. Usually, the least expensive option is to have a technician replace the tray entirely.

When you notice leaks from your AC system, you need a professional who can assess the problem and make quick repairs to avoid any potential damage to your home. For repairs, maintenance, or tips about air conditioning in Eugene, give the technicians at Comfort Flow Heating a call.

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