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How Much Water Should Drain from your AC? A NJ Tech Explains

Aug. 28, 2019


During the summer, when it’s humid, it’s normal for your AC to drain anywhere from 5-20 gallons of water per day.

However, we have to make a distinction here. 

It’s completely normal for your AC to drain 5-20 gallons of water outside of your home (via the condensate drain). 

It’s NOT normal for your AC to drain any amount of water inside your home (around your indoor AC unit). 

Below, we’ll explain both of these scenarios in more detail. 

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If your AC is draining water outside…


...It’s simply doing its job. Your AC is responsible for cooling and dehumidifying your home. 

Humidity is the amount of water vapor in the air, so to dehumidify your home, your AC pulls the water out of humid air and dispels that water outside.

Here's how:


The AC condensation process

Step 1: Your AC pulls warm/humid air into your indoor unit and that air blows over evaporator coils.

Step 2: The heat from that air is absorbed by a substance called refrigerant and carried outside. 

Step 3: When the hot & humid air hits the evaporator coils, the water in the air gathers on the coils and drips into a drain pan, located below the evaporator coils. 

Step 4: Once that water has gathered in the drain pan, it drains out of your home via the condensate line and is dumped outside via the condensate drain. 



So, if it’s humid out and you notice water pooling in your yard around the condensate drain, this is normal. All it means is that your AC is working hard to dehumidify your home. 

If water is draining from your indoor AC unit…


...there is likely an issue with your AC system, like a:
  • Rusted or damaged drain pan
  • Clogged condensate drain line
  • Frozen evaporator coil (which usually indicates a refrigerant leak)
  • Damaged condensate pump

This image exemplifies how a clogged condensate line can cause your AC system to leak water inside your home

Our suggestion?

Turn your AC system off and reach out to a professional to come and check out your system and diagnose the issue. Even if there is only a little bit of water around your indoor AC unit, it could cause larger issues down the road if it isn’t repaired ASAP. 
 

Need an HVAC professional to check out your AC system? Contact Air Experts


If you live in or around New Jersey and want a trusted professional to come and check out your AC system, contact us! With 25 years of experience in the industry, we will be able to quickly determine why your AC is leaking and repair it in no time.
 
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