thermometer hot temperatureWhen the temperatures soar and the humidity reaches oppressive levels in New England, many homeowners retreat inside to the air conditioning. Keep your central air conditioner unit in top shape with routine maintenance to avoid water damage with these tips.

Why do AC units leak?

The most likely culprit of water damage from a central AC unit is condensation. Condensation forms when the unit pulls warm, humid air in for the cooling process. The liquid created by the condensation is directed to the drain pan and then released through a drain pipeline. If this line gets clogged, the water will back up into the house, causing extensive water damage. 

Preventative AC Maintenance 

  • Check the condensation drain line for clogs and cracks. A buildup of dirt, debris, and algae can clog the line and is the most common cause of central AC unit leaks. Condensation can back up into the unit and overflow to the catch pan. If the unit is located in the attic and the clog is not cleared, the overflowing water from the catch pan will continue down into the living areas. 

Drain line break

  •  Change or clean air filters regularly. Not doing so can cause the evaporation coil to freeze up.

Related: Prevent Water Damage From Appliance Overflows

air filter cleaning

  • Service your unit annually. Most professionals will inspect your unit's coils to make sure they are clean and working properly. A dirty or frozen coil can cause condensation to build up and puddle water. 
  • Install an overflow shutoff device on the drain line. If a clog is detected the unit will turn off, preventing water backup. 
  • Inspect your drain pan for rust, cracks, or leaks. In the event of condensation build up, any water is contained within the drain pan. 

Air conditioning drain pan

Related: How to Deal With Water Damage in Your Home

Hopefully, you'll never have to worry about water damage from an air conditioner unit leak, but if the worst does happen ServiceMaster Dynamic Cleaning's services are available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year. We have the professional expertise, technology, and resources to clean and restore your property after a water damage disaster. Call 800-865-5157 or contact us and we'll be there to help.