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HVAC Clogged Condensate pan or lines

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DennisCTB
Join Date: Nov 1998
Posts: 2646 NorthWest NJ
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2012-07-06          184166


My pan or condensate lines are clogged in my furnace.

I have to rework the way they are in now as they are fixed so that cannot suck it out with a shop vac or add any bleach etc. to the lines.. but I have plans for that.

Can you add a little bleach to the lines and or the pan to purge any growth or bloggage? Or will adding any bleach to the drip pan cause corrosion?

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HVAC Clogged Condensate pan or lines

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hardwood
Join Date: Dec 2002
Posts: 3583 iowa
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2012-07-06          184167


Dennis;

I'd be careful if there is any aluminum in the system. Lots of things react with it, I'm not sure about bleach.

Don't know how hot it is mthere but a neighbor has an offical state weather station, he's registering 101.7 right now.

Frank. ....

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HVAC Clogged Condensate pan or lines

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DennisCTB
Join Date: Nov 1998
Posts: 2646 NorthWest NJ
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2012-07-06          184168


Frank this am it was really nice even a bit cool but it has gotten hotter and hotter all day long. Now at 6:30 PM about 95 degrees.

The pan is made of plastic, the cooling tubes in the evaporator are copper. Until I rework the drain pipes I have no way to just add a cap full of bleach to just the PVC drain pipes and not the pan. ....

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HVAC Clogged Condensate pan or lines

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kwschumm
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 5764 NW Oregon
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2012-07-06          184172


Bleach and copper should be OK, millions of gallons have been dumped down plumbing drain lines for years. No need to do full strength to kill what needs killing. ....

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HVAC Clogged Condensate pan or lines

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Murf
Join Date: Dec 1999
Posts: 7147 Toronto Area, Ontario, Canada
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2012-07-08          184181


Dennis, unless somebody botched the install and you have standing water in the drip pan, instead of the water just passing through, it's not likely anythings growing in there.

More likely the copious amounts of water lately have flushed the accumulated dust, dog / cat hair, etc., etc., in the coils down into the pan where it's formed a plug.

The short-term solution is to merely give a big puff of air (a can of compressed air for blowing dust out of computers works well) back up the line. It will blow s blockage clear.

Long-tem solution is to slide the coils out and clean them properly.

Best of luck. ....

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HVAC Clogged Condensate pan or lines

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kthompson
Join Date: Oct 2005
Posts: 5219 South Carolina
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2012-07-09          184185


If the air coil is clogged then you will not get air flow through it to the vents. If there is no opening in the duct work and filters are being changed as needed doubt you have that issue.

The drip plan will clogged for many reasons. Some will grow gunk, insects will drown there, blown in insulation will get in it and so forth. Service rep used wet dry vac on our drain line this past Friday which was new idea to me. Sucked it from the outside of the house.

They do make a large tablet to place in those pans to kill any alge type growth. ....

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HVAC Clogged Condensate pan or lines

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DennisCTB
Join Date: Nov 1998
Posts: 2646 NorthWest NJ
TractorPoint Premium Member -- 5 Tractors = Very Frequent Poster  View my Photos  Pics

2012-07-09          184186


I wound up opening the 5 x 5 inch access to the coil in the duct, which only lets you visually inspect the coil, you cannot even get your hand in there the coil is right up to the edge. I confirmed that there was standing water in the drip pan and that the coils were not freezing.

My condensate line services the humidifier and the condensate so I took the humidifier line and lowered it and stuck a short piece of 3/4 pipe with an end cap on it. I then removed the bracket attached to the furnace condensate line which allowed me to lift the pipe out of the drain hole in the floor. My house was built when it was still legal to drain through the basement floor. I then attached some short pieces to the drain end so that I could use my shop vac with this adapter

//ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/31SGPBVXGTL._SL500_AA300_.jpg

This made a pretty tight fit, sucked out the clog, poured some more water with a bleach mix into the drip pan and sucked it out a couple of times.

Been running fine since, probably should have been doing this every year before I use the AC.

....


Link:   Shop Vac adapter

 
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____________________________________________________________________________________
HVAC Clogged Condensate pan or lines

View my Photos
DennisCTB
Join Date: Nov 1998
Posts: 2646 NorthWest NJ
TractorPoint Premium Member -- 5 Tractors = Very Frequent Poster  View my Photos  Pics

2012-07-09          184187


Quote:
Originally Posted by Murf | view 184181
Dennis, unless somebody botched the install ....


I have two HVAC units, both of which had a sink trap in the condensate lines that of course would always be full of water until it evaporates at the end of the season.

I reworked the lines on one of the furnaces to remove the trap last year. The clogged one still has the trap which I think is a problem, its not a sewage line after all !
....

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____________________________________________________________________________________
HVAC Clogged Condensate pan or lines

View my Photos
kthompson
Join Date: Oct 2005
Posts: 5219 South Carolina
TractorPoint Premium Member -- 5 Tractors = Very Frequent Poster  View my Photos  Pics

2012-07-09          184191


We had a new system in my office installed last year. Think they installed a "S" piece of pipe near the drip pan but not sure. Here they install a trap outside in the line my impression to prevent insects from using the pipe for a home. Might be why they would near the unit also but you are right should not be producing any gases in that line.

....

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