Central A/C condensate leak ?

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  #1  
Old 06-09-19, 09:21 AM
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Central A/C condensate leak ?

Hi Guys,

I have a central A/C system, and when we turn on the A/C for this season a week ago (NJ) , I see water is leaking, there is a plastic plate under the A/C / heat unit, and it has water, at some point water must have leaked b/c we see it on the ceiling downstairs

not sure where to start looking, in general I do not see any leak from below A/C and the surface is dry

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Last edited by PJmax; 06-09-19 at 09:40 AM. Reason: resized/labeled picture
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Old 06-09-19, 09:36 AM
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You will need to flush out the primary A/C drain line. It's partially plugged and allowing the water to overflow the main pan inside the unit. There normally should not be any water in the overflow pan. There should be a drain line on the secondary pan so that it doesn't overflow.

In the last picture you'll see two red caps. You can flush thru there using warm water and bleach. There should also have been a float switch installed in the one red cap so that the system shuts down before overflowing.

That's a hot attic...... you'll be getting a lot of condensation off the large refrigerant line that should be insulated.
 
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Old 06-09-19, 10:06 AM
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Thank you for your reply.

I will try to see how to flush " primary A/C drain line" (red caps) with warm water and bleach.

q2.) "It's partially plugged and allowing the water to overflow the main pan inside the unit. " -- where do you see it is partially plugged in? how do I secure it? are you referring to the copper pipe you pointed out in the pic?
 
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Old 06-09-19, 10:14 AM
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Do you know where the condensate line discharges ? Usually outside. You may have to use a shop vac to draw the sludge out thru there. You need the drain running smooth. If it's partially plugged just pouring water down may not clear it.

Just pull up the red caps. There should not be a water level in there. If the level is pretty high then a clogs is the problem. Typically you pout the hot water and bleach down the red cap. You can use a funnel to make it easier. Use hot tap water. A gallon of water and 1/2 cup of bleach should be good.

That pipe should be insulated from that unit all the way to the outside unit. You can get that 3/4" split foam insulation at the home improvement stores.
 
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Old 06-09-19, 11:11 AM
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Are you saying the white pipe pvc needs to be insulated?
 
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Old 06-09-19, 03:06 PM
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No, Pete was saying that you should insulate the large diameter copper pipe, the one that the arrow is point to. That pipe is normally very cold when the A/C is running and if left uninsulated, will cause condensation and water dripping from the pipe.
 
  #7  
Old 06-10-19, 12:53 PM
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Thank you.

I tried to do the steps and clean the pipe.. but all the bleached warm water came to the plate underneath..

also I could not find the outlet pipe outside, is it possible the installer merged it to the main drain? (there is a bathroom under the attic ).. is that a common practice? in all you tube vids, I never saw that it merged.. but in my home there is no outlet that connects to this pipe.. from middle of attic it goes down and disappears.. that's why I think it is merged in the main drain.
 
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Old 06-10-19, 06:05 PM
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It could merge into the main but that is not the correct way to do it. It would need a trap at the main location. The only way you could clean that.... or remove the clog..... is by using compressed air and then the hot water/bleach as a chaser.

Check under the sink for a possible tie in.
 
  #9  
Old 06-10-19, 07:52 PM
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I dont see any tie in under the bath sink.

how did the inspector pass it ?

I rocked the pipe little , until l I can see it , I did not cut or anything, but I did feel that water was flowing until the last point, I could touch the pipe, where it went down to attic.

I dont have pressured air ( although i did make one using my bicycle pump and try to generate 20 psi .. but since the bleached water that I added , I found in the tray, I will call the hvac professional


Thank you for your help ..
 
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Old 06-11-19, 09:37 AM
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It's difficult to add "pressure" with your setup. If you put air in the top where the cap is.... it just goes inside the air handler. You may end up cutting the PVC pipe, blowing it out and then recoupling it.

The condensate drain line was most likely installed after the "rough-in" inspection so the inspector would not have seen it.
 
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