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Volleyballer[G8 07-25-2010 06:34 PM

Condensation line flowing lots of water (pics inside)
 
First time poster...28 year old 6-year homeowner trying to become a low-level DIY-er. Here's what is going on:

In my utility closet I have a single heating/AC unit working to heat/cool a 1900 square foot, 2-story house (no crawlspace or basement). There are two pvc pipes protuding from two different sides of the house which I assume are condensation lines? One of them never has any water coming out of it (I will call this CL#2 for condensation line #2). The other usually has a very small drip coming out, but for some reasn now it has gone up to flowing about a gallon every hour or so (just an estimate). The ground around the exit of this pipe (CL#1) is saturated. The water flow coming out of this has never been this steady. I've done some reading and have generated a low-level basic understanding of this possibly being a clogged up primary condensation line and have taken the following steps:

1: attached a shop vac to the white PVC "T", as well as CL #1, CL #2, and a third pipe outside that is almost 3" in diameter (it was a vertically facing pipe with a screwed-on lid).

2: poured bleach and warm water (x 2) down the white PVC "T", which came out of CL #1

3: removed panel around the ac unit and inspected condensation catching drain pan and area around it...no water leaks anywhere, just an exponential increase in water flow.


PICTURES:

AC unit with PVC "T" + second uncapped short PVC pipe
http://img836.imageshack.us/img836/5702/pvcpipes.jpg

extra lines running out of AC unit through ceiling (what are these?)
http://img291.imageshack.us/img291/2...appedpipes.jpg

CL #1 (pan fills in 30 minutes) [this may not be the primary...just labeling it for sake of conversation]
http://img30.imageshack.us/img30/945...sationline.jpg

CL #2 (is and always has been dry)
http://img525.imageshack.us/img525/5...sationline.jpg

yuri 07-25-2010 06:43 PM

Try downsizing your pics to 620 x 280 pixels. They are so huge few people will read them or your writing having to scroll all over. See the rules in (manage attachments).

Volleyballer[G8 07-25-2010 06:56 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by yuri (Post 475214)
Try downsizing your pics to 620 x 280 pixels. They are so huge few people will read them or your writing having to scroll all over. See the rules in (manage attachments).

Resized. Sorry about that! Thanks for the reminder :)

yuri 07-25-2010 07:10 PM

Sounds normal to me. Where do you live, humid Florida? Is the house nice and cool. Is this an unusually humid Summer.?

beenthere 07-25-2010 07:24 PM

Have you changed your air filter recently?

Volleyballer[G8 07-25-2010 08:17 PM

Air filter was changed about 2 weeks ago...even took the metal cover outside and washed it. I am in Central Kentucky (around Lexington). It is always pretty humid here, i.e. nothing outside the usual ranges. Further, I've even begun setting the thermostat to a higher standard temperature (up to 75 from 72 as it is all electric here...lowers the energy bill significantly).

I'm not sure if I can classify this as normal as I am releasing 2-3 gallons an hour of water. Previously I doubt if I would have released a gallon or two in an entire 24 hour period. The water flow is exponentially higher. The area around the end of the PVC pipe is very saturated with water (it is NEVER anywhere near this close to that much water...not even close).

yuri 07-25-2010 09:05 PM

The moisture has to come from somewhere. Is your attic hatch sealed properly and any other sources of air entering/infiltrating the house sealed?. Any changes in construction to the house?. If the unit is keeping up and the house is comfortable it sounds like it is doing its job. If it was low on freon it would freezeup the indoor coil.

Volleyballer[G8 07-25-2010 11:32 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by yuri (Post 475297)
The moisture has to come from somewhere. Is your attic hatch sealed properly and any other sources of air entering/infiltrating the house sealed?. Any changes in construction to the house?. If the unit is keeping up and the house is comfortable it sounds like it is doing its job. If it was low on freon it would freezeup the indoor coil.

1. Air entering - there is a hole in the garage ceiling (one small water leak from), but there is still plenty of insulation there and no hole on the second floor side (just replaced all the old drywall that had gotten soaked last week...nothing fancy, just cut out the old stuff and replace with new).

2. No changes in construction - it was built new 6 years ago.

3. - The AC Unit - I've had the coil replaced once a year ago, plus recharged with freon then too. It also had to have one part of the old coil rewelded (or something like that)? where there was a leak previously...cant remember the details, but either way that piece has already been replaced with a new coil (happened 2 months after the 5 year warranty ran out....argh!). I just mention those two to show that it has had to been serviced twice in the past six years. The builders also cut corners in other areas as we came to find later (for example: they put a 1/4" plastic freezer line in to feed my first dishwasher...suffice it to say it burned out the motor from lack of water. I put in a new dishwasher and replaced that freeze rline with the appropriate (at least what the lowes guy told me lol..wasnt a DIY-er yet) 3/4" metal sleeved line.

4. Comfort - it is keeping the yard comfortable, but im concered about the amount of water now coming out...I could put a measuring cup down there to give you an idea of how much is flowing and how quickly.

5. - Side note: when i had the power to the A/c off to work on it today, no water came out the back. Obviously I assume this means it only condensates when running, but just thought I'd add all the details I had just in case. All the shop-vac sucked up was about 24 ounces or so and didnt see any large amounts of mold/algae looking stuff as ive seen others report seeing after a "successful" shop vac use.

yuri 07-26-2010 06:42 AM

If it was low on freon B4 the leak was fixed (permanent now) then it was not cooling 100%. Now that it is fully charged and workin 100% you are gettin more moisture (doing its job) then U are used 2. Don't worry B happy.:laughing::laughing:

Volleyballer[G8 07-26-2010 09:53 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by yuri (Post 475389)
If it was low on freon B4 the leak was fixed (permanent now) then it was not cooling 100%. Now that it is fully charged and workin 100% you are gettin more moisture (doing its job) then U are used 2. Don't worry B happy.:laughing::laughing:

The freon recharge was a year ago...the excess moisture/drip only started in the past week (maybe it was recharged after the hottest part of the year and this is my first 'hot summer' with it recharged and the new coil? Does that help explain it?)

So two gallons or so an hour dripping out next to my foundation is acceptable? Should I be digging down a few feet and putting in a bunch of rock or field tile to help move the drainage away from the house?

Thank you for the time and responses too...much appreciated.

beenthere 07-26-2010 11:41 AM

Don't dig a hole. Use a pad like you would put under spouting to direct the water away from the house. You don't want to dig a hole and create a sink hole at your house a few years down the road.

2 gallons an hour is alot. But a gallon plus an hour is not.

Mike Swearingen 07-26-2010 12:03 PM

Is that second line with no condensationn coming out near your inside water heater? It may just be the outside of the T&P blowout line or water heater pan drain line in case of overheating of the water heater. The T&P valve will blow off steam and hot water in order to prevent the water heater from exploding. Of course it's always much better to exhaust that outside than inside if it ever does. Just a guess.
Mike

Volleyballer[G8 07-26-2010 12:46 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Mike Swearingen (Post 475516)
Is that second line with no condensationn coming out near your inside water heater? It may just be the outside of the T&P blowout line or water heater pan drain line in case of overheating of the water heater. The T&P valve will blow off steam and hot water in order to prevent the water heater from exploding. Of course it's always much better to exhaust that outside than inside if it ever does. Just a guess.
Mike

My water heater and ac unit are in the dead center or a square shaped downstairs...all the walls are relatively equidistant from both units.

Thanks for the input!


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