Thursday, June 20, 2013

An Ounce of Prevention...Clogged Condensate Lines

The service calls we receive during each heating and cooling season seems to have their own theme. This week's theme seems to be clogged condensate lines. So, what causes condensate lines to get clogged?

  • Improperly Installed Condensate Drain Lines: If you have recently had a new system installed and have a problem with your condensate drain line, it may have installed improperly. Call a reputable HVAC company for a full inspection.
  • Insects: Bugs and even rodents in larger HVAC systems can crawl into condensate lines and cause clogs in condensate lines. Routine service maintenance on your system can help locate these clogs early on and prevent further damage. 
  • Debris forms during winter months: During the winter months when the air conditioner is not running, (particularly for non-heat pump systems) dust, debris, and condensate can accumulate in the drain trap and convert to a dried out debris ball that clogs your condensate line. After several years of this wet, sludge accumulation, and then drying cycle, the plug of dried sludge in a condensate trap or drain can actually block condensate flow through the system.
Of course there are other causes, but these seem to be the most common. So, how do you prevent your condensate drain from getting clogged? You can never fully prevent this from happening (you never know when insects, rodents, or other living creatures may decide to call your condensate line home) but you can help prevent most problems by inspecting and cleaning your condensate lines every spring and fall. If you do not feel confident in cleaning the lines yourself, it is always best to contact a reputable heating and cooling contractor to perform a full inspection of your HVAC system.

Nathan Peterson, Owner
Peterson Heating & Cooling
Lake of the Ozarks, Missouri

Peterson Heating & Cooling specializes in residential and light commercial heating, cooling, and ventilation. Serving the Lake of the Ozarks and surrounding areas.

(573) 280-9647