AC condensation line dripping from attic drain and splashing onto drywall

by Eric   Last Updated June 28, 2018 03:21 AM

During the summer when it gets 90+ degrees outside my ac creates a lot of drainage from the attic. The drain line was made to just drip onto the garage floor by the homebuilder. Well the water, especially on 90+ days, is splashing onto the drywall. There were a couple mold spots I treated with bleach and now have plexiglass in front of..

Is this a normal installation? What's the best way to fix this issue because my current set up obviously isn't a good long term fix. I'm a complete newbie so I apologize for my ignorance about this.

Thanks so much.

drain water splash location

drain from ceiling shown with proximity to wall shown

Answers 3

An AC unit will produce condensate all the time, not just when its over a certain temp outside.

Check your AC Unit in the attic. The Primary AC condensate drain is normally drained to either the main house drain or to the outside via a PVC pipe about the same size as the on draining into the garage.

There is a secondary drain, think an emergency notification that the Primary Drain is clogged. or not working. The drain you are seeing in the garage is most likely hooked to the drip pan hanging under the AC unit to catch any leaks not handled by the main drain, or the AC Air Handler sweating in the heat of the attic. In most areas the drip pan is supposed to be an electrical float system to shut off the AC unit is there is too much condensate in it, as that means there is something going on with the AC unit.

Use the attic access in the garage right next the drain pipe and see if that is the drain attached to the Air Handler itself or the emergency drain attached to the drip pan.

If you see another PVC pipe connected to the Air Handler itself, follow it in the attic to see where it goes. If it leads outside, it normally will be draining somewhere near the AC Compressor outside, but might be somewhere else. If you find it outside, a quick fix is to clear it out using a wet vac.

Long and short Pics of the AC unit in the attic will help diagnose the issues, but most certainly a call to the AC Service Company is most likely a good thing if they have not been out to Service the AC system this year!

June 28, 2018 03:57 AM

Seems to me that when the AC is running the water should be draining through the pipe that is going into the water heater closet. If there's no water going through that pipe then most likely it's plugged. Is there an access panel so you can see from the inside and see if water is draining into the two pvc drain pipes. If not I would cut the drain pipe that goes to the closet near the AC unit and see if water runs out. My guess it will because the plugged up area is most likely where the multiple 90 degree fittings are. The good part is it's pvc so as long as you cut it in the middle of a straight section it's real easy to glue it back together. It looks like they tried to make a trap, and someone correct me if I'm wrong, but I don't think you need one since that closet drain is open.

Platinum Goose
Platinum Goose
June 28, 2018 20:29 PM

Without being able to inspect the installation, it's difficult to say for sure, but here's my $0.02. The main condensate drain is not plumbed properly, which causes it to drain slowly. When the unit is producing more than average condensate, the main drain is overwhelmed. This causes condensate to use the secondary drain, which drains into the drip pan.

If this problem just started (didn't happen before in similar situations), then it's possible that the main drain is clogged/restricted. If that's the case, you'll want to clean/clear the main drain.

If this is not a new problem, you might want to consider fixing the main drain.

The other possibility, is that the unit is simply sweating due to high humidity. If this is the case, then you'll have to manage the water coming from the drip pan more effectively. This could as simple as extending the pipe, and having it drain in a more convenient location.

June 29, 2018 13:39 PM

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