Realistically, in a situation where an air conditioner leaks water, it is not going to cause an immediate breakdown in the unit. However, this is an important tell-tale sign which represents an urgency that needs to be addressed quickly, such that the problem does not worsen further. This matter is relatively easier to identify and solve. Inspect your aircon unit thoroughly during installation to minimise unnecessary problems. The pump’s job is to drain out water thoroughly so that aircon leakage is prevented.
Aircon Leaking: How to Fix it
An aircon running smoothly in the hot weather of Singapore is highly essential to save oneself from the scorching heat. However, with the regular operation of the air-conditioning system, certain problems might arise, which can prevent it from running efficiently.
One common problem, which all aircon owners know, is water dripping or leaking from the aircon unit. Whether it is leaking from the indoor unit or the outdoor unit, it can create some serious issues as well, which will require professionals to help to repair it.
In this article, we will be sharing the common causes of water leaking from the aircon and what you can do to fix them.
Causes of Aircon Leaking Water And Their Solutions
When you notice water leaking from your aircon, the first thing you should do is try to identify where the leakage is coming from to determine the root cause of the leakage. Typically, it is true that an air conditioner dripping water is not going to cause an immediate breakdown in the unit. However, it is an urgent issue that needs to be addressed quickly, such that it does not worsen and create further problems.
Once the cause has been identified, you will be in a better position to fix the problem. Some of the common causes of aircon water leakage problems will be discussed below:
Improper Aircon Installation
If you have recently installed your aircon and you notice water leaking, then the most common cause for this leakage could be an incorrect installation. There are several ways through which improper installation can cause leakage. These are further discussed below:
- If the drain pipes are not connected properly, this will result in water leaking when the aircon is turned on. Connecting the drain pipes correctly according to the manual instructions will resolve this problem.
- If the drainage pans are not connected properly to the unit, it will also cause the aircon to leak. Again, connecting the drain pipes properly will stop the leakage. This issue is relatively easier to spot and fix. Inspect your aircon unit thoroughly during installation to minimise such occurrence.
- If the aircon unit is not levelled properly, it will cause water to accumulate in the drain pan and consequently drip outside. When the aircon is levelled properly, it will solve the problem of water leaking.
- In the case of a window air-conditioner, if there is any gap between the unit and the wall, it can result in condensation of the coils and result in a leak. Properly sealing those gaps during installation will help resolve the problem.
These problems of aircon installation can be resolved by yourself or get professional help to install the unit properly.
Blockage in Drain Pipe
If your aircon has been installed for quite some time and then you notice water leaking from the indoor unit, then it is likely not an issue of improper installation.
The most common cause of water leakage in such cases is some kind of blockage in the drain pipe. With continued use, dirt, debris, and mould can accumulate inside the drain pipes, which will cause them to clog.
Water, then, will have nowhere to go forward and hence will result in leakage. Some newer models of air-conditioners have the built-in feature of shutting off if the drainpipe is clogged. If you notice water leaking from the aircon and it also shuts off itself, then immediately check for blockage in the drain pipe.
If the drainpipe becomes old, it can develop cracks which will also cause the aircon to drip water. These problems associated with a clogged drain pipe can be resolved with regular servicing.
You can hire a professional who will check for clogged drains and flush them to ensure proper drainage. Drainpipe with cracks will need to be replaced.
Blockage in Condensation Line
The condensation coil is located in the outer unit of the aircon. As a result, it is more prone to accumulate dust and debris over time. In the absence of regular servicing, this dust and debris can clog the condensation pipe and cause it to leak.
To determine if there is any leakage in the condenser pipe, you will have to remove the outer unit and examine the condenser coils. Sometimes, visible cracks could be seen in the coil, making the diagnosis much easier.
However, in the absence of visible cracks, you can place a dry cloth through the coil and check after some time if the cloth is dry or wet. In the case that it gets wet, you can be certain that the condenser coils are leaking. This problem of leakage in the condenser coils will require you to call for expert aircon repair services.
Helpful read: Aircon Servicing Price Guide In Singapore
Clogged Air Filter
Another common cause of water leaking from the aircon is a clogged air filter. If the air filter is clogged, it will constrict the airflow of the air-conditioner. This, in turn, will cause the air around the evaporator coils to become too cold.
The evaporator coils will freeze and cause the inner unit to be covered with a layer of ice. When the outer heat reaches this area, it will cause the ice to melt leading to water leaking from the unit. The easiest solution to the clogged air filter problem is to clean your air filter regularly, at least twice a month.
When the air filter does not seem to be unclogged even after cleaning, you may require a higher level of aircon servicing – a chemical wash or an overhaul service.
For this, it can only be done by a trained professional. Should it not work, the expert will also advise you that it is time to replace it with a new air filter.
Having a blocked air filter can also decrease the efficiency of the air-conditioner and can increase energy bills. Therefore, replacing them when they become clogged is of utmost importance.
Helpful Read: What’s Aircon Chemical Wash and Overhaul?
Low Gas Issues
When the gas of the air-conditioner is at a lower than below average, it will put pressure on the air-conditioning system to work harder. This can sometimes cause the evaporator coils to freeze. When the ice melts, it creates an overflow in the drainpipe, which can cause water to leak from the indoor or outdoor unit.
When you notice water leaking from the aircon as well as a decrease in the performance of the air conditioner, then you can consider checking for low gas. In the case of such an issue, filling the gas of the aircon will then fix the problem of water leaking as well as increase the air-conditioning unit performance.
If the pump in your air conditioner becomes faulty, it will not pull out the water from the overflow pan towards the drainpipe, resulting in leakage. The pump is mainly responsible for draining out water thoroughly so that aircon leakage is prevented.
You can check to see if the pump is not functioning properly by pouring some water in the overflow pan and checking to see if it gets drawn to the drainpipe or not.
If it doesn’t, this could be because of the broken pump. To fix it, you will need to call a professional to repair the pump or replace it with a new one.
These are some of the causes of water leaking from the air conditioner and their proposed solutions. If you regularly service your aircon, you can ensure that many of these problems will be identified earlier. You can then easily fix those problems and prevent bigger issues from arising in the future.
Whenever you notice water leaking from the aircon, try to find the cause as early as possible so that it can be fixed. Call any professional aircon servicing to thoroughly check the air-conditioner and fix the issues to maintain its performance and efficiency.
How to differentiate Aircon leak water from refrigerants?
In this article, we have discussed the common causes that lead to aircon leaking. However, it is critical for you to identify what is the leaking liquid (e.g if it is water or refrigerant). Often, it could just be water, but to be on the safe side, we are recommended to always take precautions in the worst-case scenario. In the situation of refrigerant leakage, it could be dangerous in terms of negative health issues when it evaporates into a gas from liquid. Below are some tell-tale signs of aircon refrigerant leakage.
- Dripping or small puddle of water
- Foul smell from the aircon air
- Condenser drain pipe is clogged/filled with water
- The electricity bill is much costly than average
- The Aircon is blowing warm air
- Freezing of water droplets turning into ice on evaporator coils
How much does it cost to fix an aircon leak?
In general, aircon troubleshoot charges range from $40 and above, though it can be waived if the homeowner engages in repair services after the initial troubleshooting. The price of aircon servicing, in general, is dependent on the number of aircon units, which can range from as low as $25 to $160. Based on the extent of your aircon leak, however, repairs may cost around a few hundred dollars.
Read also: Aircon Cost Guide
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