Air Conditioning Service

Should Your AC Drip Water Outside? Understanding Your Air Conditioner’s Condensation Process

Your air conditioner unit is likely a staple in your home during warm weather. However, homeowners may notice their air conditioner leaking water outside when they walk past the unit. Seeing this water can be concerning if you aren’t clear on how an AC works.

Understanding Your Air Conditioner

Your air conditioner works by absorbing the heat from indoor air and releasing it outside, which results in a cooler home. As the unit pulls the warmer air out, it causes evaporation and condensation of the refrigerant in the system. As the refrigerant turns into gas, it travels to your outdoor unit, the condenser, and releases the heat. Then, it returns to a liquid state.


Why Does the AC Drip Water?

When your air is being cooled, it also uses a process known as dehumidification, which removes the moisture from the air. When warm, humid air is passed over the cold evaporator coil, it will cause condensation. The condensation will then collect in the drain pan and be directed outside through the drainpipe. This drainage can cause your outdoor unit to drip water outdoors and is typically a normal part of the operation.


When Is Water Concerning?

Seeing water outside of your air conditioner unit is usually normal. However, there are situations where seeing a water leak may be a sign of a problem with the unit. If there’s a steep increase in the amount of water dripping or water leaking out when the unit isn’t running, it should be considered a red flag.

Unusual water leakage can indicate issues like a clogged drainpipe. It can also signal a dirty air filter or low refrigerant, both of which can cause your coil to ice over or freeze completely. If you are concerned you’re dealing with any of these issues, it’s best to contact an HVAC professional immediately.

Avoiding Concerning Leaks

The best way to avoid unwanted AC leaks is to maintain your unit regularly. Ensure your air conditioner is routinely cleaned, and your air filter is changed as often as your technician recommends. Have your tech come out and check the refrigerant level, inspect the drain line for clogs, and ensure that everything appears to be maintained as it should be. This will help prevent leaks and keep your air conditioner running well through the warm season.

Let Elite Help

Smaller amounts of water draining from your air conditioner unit while running is typically a normal function. However, if you have any concerns about the amount of water draining from your unit, it’s important to have a professional check it out. The Elite Heating and AC Repair team can help you with any concerns. As the most trusted AC repair company in Las Vegas, you can trust that our techs will diagnose the issue and get your unit working how it should.


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