A home’s drain line is an integral part of any plumbing system. Apart from the standard drains that remove wastewater from toilets, sinks, indoor and outdoor floor drains, and shower and tub drain, there is also a drain meant to remove water from the HVAC System. Heat pumps and air conditioners after all produce a lot of condensation that gets caught in the drain pan and exits out of the house through drainpipes.
Leaks in the ceiling mean that the issue is not solely due to a plumbing problem. With HVAC drain pipes, it is also possible that condensate drain lines are clogged or overflowing. Seeking professional plumbing inspection will help the homeowner get a full picture of the plumbing issue at hand, and will help in securing long-term repairs.
Plumbing and HVAC Drain Lines at Home
There are common drain lines found in every home. These include the following: toilet drains, bathroom sink drains, kitchen sink drain, freezer sink drain, indoor and outdoor floor drain, bathtub drains, shower drains, laundry room drain, and water heater drains. All these need adequate maintenance so that they would not cause inconveniences such as clogging and drain-related leaks. Usually, drainage backups and leakages cause water damage, that in turn causes structural issues and health risks.
Most city codes require newly constructed homes to have a drain line for their air conditioner’s condensate line tied into the home plumbing system. This way, homes will have a sure and efficient way of diverting their HVAC condensation drips out of their property. Usually, the condensation line is in the form of a ¾” pipe that gets plumbed into that of the bathroom sink, which is usually doubly bigger in diameter.
By tying the HVAC drain pipes to the sink drains, condensation gets effectively drained out towards sewers. At the same time, the trap found in the sink drain protects the HVAC drain from emitting sewer gasses into the home and the HVAC system.
For older homes though, the condensate line usually found in the attic is not tied into the home plumbing system. The HVAC drain usually has a separate drain line that gets water out of the system.
Whether the drain line is tied into the home plumbing system or not, the HVAC drains must be properly maintained since clogging will surely cause mess and a lot of inconveniences.
Maintaining ac condensate drain lines and the home’s HVAC system
When it comes to maintaining a home’s drain lines, it is crucial to ensure that routine maintenance and professional care are carried out regularly. For instance, homeowners may opt to add professionally recommended biological drain cleaners that could help remove slime, sludge, gunk, and algae that cause clogging of drain pipes.
And while it is crucial to keep the drain lines running smoothly, plumbers do not recommend using over-the-counter drain cleaners that could damage the insides of the pipes in the long run. These include Drano and Liquid Plumr all have harsh chemicals that do more harm than good when it comes to plumbing care.
Homeowners should keep an eye on slow drains, and have them professionally cleared out as soon as possible. Slow drains are an indication of a full-blown clog that could happen in a couple of weeks or even less. Professional plumbers can easily troubleshoot this issue. Shrugging off this matter could lead to a bigger inconvenience, especially for homes with HVAC drains tied into their plumbing system. Usually, such a problem will cause water leaks in areas where leaks are not meant to occur.
For older homes that do not have a tied HVAC and home plumbing system, it is still best to keep the plumbing and condensate drain lines well maintained. Clogged condensate lines can affect the performance of the heating and air conditioning system. Pouring plain vinegar down the drain every change of season could help keep the drain lines running smoothly.
How to locate the HVAC Condensate Drain?
Not every homeowner is aware of the location of the HVAC Condensate drain. If water is leaking out or pouring out of the ceiling, and the owner has ruled out a plumbing problem, then the condensate drain line of the HVAC system may be clogged. The condensate drain line is usually located above a faced-up drain pan within the home’s attic. If water is leaking, either the condensate drain pan is overflowing, or the pipe is clogged.
To avoid problems HVAC experts recommend that homeowners install ceiling savers that cut power into the HVAC system once it detects that the condensate drain pan is close to overflowing. By deploying this system, homeowners can get prompted about the issue, and consequently seek professional help.
For homeowners who are used to having the same issue, HVAC experts recommend having an additional system in place to avoid the consequences of an overflowing drain pan. For instance, installing an ultraviolet lamp in the evaporator coil could slow down the growth of algae and slime which could cause clogs and issues. Another option is the installation of an algae pad that helps prevent slime build-up in the system, by routinely releasing ammonia in the system for six months.
We can help solve your drain issues and your HVAC system?
If Ac Condenser or drain problems are an issue in your home, please know that we at Reliable Standard Heating and Air are more than happy to help you. As your local Plumbing and HVAC expert, we have helped countless homes diagnose and solve their plumbing and HVAC woes in no time! We can help you with the professional maintenance help that you need, and educate you about the homeowner’s routine maintenance chores you need to get familiar with so you could avoid monstrous plumbing and HVAC issues. Get in touch with us today so we can help you with your concerns! Call us on our hotline anytime, or schedule a technician’s visit at your most convenient time using our online platform.