Ductless air conditioners can help homeowners save energy. Plus, they’re easy to install. However, one common problem homeowners and business owners sometimes face is water leaking from their units. This article will explore the common causes of ductless air conditioner water leaks.
What’s a Ductless Air Conditioner?
Ductless air conditioners, which are also known as mini-split ACs, are great for cooling without ductwork. Instead, these systems feature an outdoor condenser and one or more indoor units that are connected by a refrigerant line.
The indoor unit is installed on a wall or ceiling and contains an evaporator coil, a fan, and a drainage system. The outdoor unit eliminates heat from the air and transports it to the indoor unit. The indoor unit then removes moisture and blows cool air into the room.
As the evaporator coil removes moisture, the condensation it creates drains through a small tube to the outside of the unit. When this process works correctly, homeowners shouldn’t even realize it’s happening. But when something goes wrong, water can leak from the unit.
Common Causes of a Leaky Ductless Air Conditioner
While condensation is a natural occurrence in ductless air conditioners, several other common issues can contribute to water leakage.
1. Clogged Drain Line
The most common reason for ductless air conditioner water leakage is a clogged drain line. A clog can form due to dirt, dust, or other debris accumulating inside the drain line. When this happens, the water will back up and leak out of the indoor unit. The easiest way to handle this situation is to call a professional to clean out the line or perform the necessary AC repair.
2. Issues With the Drain Pan
The drain pan is a small tray located underneath the indoor unit that collects condensate. Over time, the pan can get rusted or clogged with debris, causing it to overflow. As a result, the pan needs regular cleaning.
3. Leaks in Refrigerant Lines
If you notice water dripping from your unit, the refrigerant lines could be punctured or leaking. These lines carry coolant between the indoor and outdoor units. When they’re damaged, condensation will build up and cause leaks.
If you spot any leaks around the refrigerant lines, reach out to an HVAC professional for assistance. They’ll be able to help you address the issue promptly and ensure your system is working smoothly.
4. Improper Installation and Drainage
Improper installation or inadequate drainage can cause water leakage from ductless air conditioners. If the indoor unit is tilted or improperly installed, water may accumulate and flow back into the room. This issue is more prevalent with DIY installations. Hiring professional HVAC specialists can ensure that the unit is installed correctly, minimizing the risk of leaks and other related problems.
5. Condensation Issues
If the air filter becomes dirty or clogged, airflow will be restricted, leading to condensation buildup and leakage from the unit. Don’t worry! This is a common issue that can be easily resolved by cleaning or replacing the air filter.
What Happens If You Ignore the Leak?
Some people think that small leaks and drips from their ductless air conditioner aren’t a big deal and can be ignored. However, ignoring these issues can lead to more significant problems.
1. Electrical Issues and Rotting Parts
Water on electrical components of the air handler unit can cause shorts, blown fuses, and fire hazards, putting your family and home at risk. The cabinet, drain pan, fan motor windings, and other parts may rot and corrode, resulting in costly repairs or replacements if the damage is extensive.
2. Water Damage
Constant leaks can result in wall stains, warped floors, peeling paint, and even mold growth. Moreover, they can soak insulation and cause structural damage to your walls.
3. Higher Energy Bills
Leaking refrigerant, damaged insulation, and excess moisture can make your AC unit work harder and run less efficiently. This drives up your monthly energy costs.
Stop the Leaks Today
Instead of ignoring these issues, address them head on to avoid costly repairs and replacements in the future. Regular maintenance, such as cleaning or replacing air filters and checking for leaks, can help prevent these problems. If you notice any signs of leaks, reach out to a professional HVAC technician to inspect and repair your ductless air conditioning system.
Denver Pro Mechanical is proud to serve Denver, CO and the surrounding areas. We can help with any of your residential or commercial HVAC service needs, including repair, installation, and maintenance. Contact us today to schedule an appointment.