A blockage due to an overgrowth of mold or algae in the air conditioner‘s warm, moist condensate drain system can wreak havoc on your home. Checking and cleaning the A/C drain line periodically isn’t a difficult chore, and it’s an effective way to prevent problems like excessive humidity, musty smells or costly water damage from a condensate back up.

How to Clean the A/C Condensate Drain Line

You’ll only need to gather together a few basic items to clean the drain, including rags, distilled vinegar, a funnel and a wet/dry vacuum. Then, follow these easy steps:

Shut down the HVAC system at the thermostat and circuit breaker. Locate the condensate pan situated just below the air handler, which may be in the attic, a utility closet or in the garage. You may need to remove an access panel to find the pan.

If there’s standing water in the pan, the condensate drain line is likely clogged. Vacuum up the water, or soak it up with rags. Give the pan a good scrubbing with soap and fresh water.

Go outdoors and find the end of the condensate drain line. It’s often located on the wall behind or next to the condenser/compressor unit. Place the end of the vacuum hose over the opening, let it run for about a minute, then check inside the canister to make sure the clog was pulled through.

Back at the air handler unit, locate the drain line access outlet. To clear out any remaining debris, remove the outlet cover and using the funnel, pour approximately one cup of vinegar into the drain line.

Let the vinegar sit for about 30 minutes, then flush the line thoroughly with water. You’ll know it’s clear when water runs freely from the outdoor end of the drain pipe.

Check out One Source Heating & Cooling’s other HVAC maintenance solutions like cleaning the A/C drain line, or give us a call at (205) 209-4246 for expert help!

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