What is the Condensate Pan?

Posted On April 11th, 2017 by Lanz HVAC

Here in Danville, IL, air conditioning repair services are accustomed to handling all kinds of issues. Among the more common are problems with the condensate pan, which can be surprisingly problematic when they arise. What is the condensate pan and what kind of trouble is associated with it? We’ve included a brief discussion below.

As your air conditioner cools the air, the moisture in it coalesces into beads of condensation on the evaporator coils. (The process is similar to the creation of dew on your lawn in the early hours of the morning.) The condensate pan exists to remove that moisture from the system safely. As the condensation drips down, it falls into the pan. A drain line attached to the pan removes the liquid, keeping electronic components and similar parts of the system safe from shorts or water damage.

Normally, a condensate pan works just fine: it’s simple and doesn’t involve any complicated parts that can break down on you. That doesn’t mean it can’t suffer damage, however. Clogs in the drain line will cause it to overflow, as will a crack in the pan or even just the pan becoming misaligned. In addition, pans can overflow due to problems with other parts of the system. For instance, if refrigerant levels are low, then ice will form on the evaporator coils. When it melts, it could quickly fill up the pan faster than the melted water can drain out of it.

The result of such issues is invariably the same. Overflowing condensation will damage or short out other components in the air conditioner, and suddenly a comparatively minor repair takes on serious proportions. Some air conditioners have a safety feature: a floater switch that shuts the system off when the water rises too high. But even then, you’ll still need to correct the problem with the condensate pan before the system will function again.

Air conditioning repair services in Danville, IL like the folks at Lanz Heating & Cooling can resolve your problems quickly and efficiently. We treat issues with the condensate pan on a regular basis, and can replace a defunct one if a repair isn’t feasible. Give us a call today and let us show you what we can do!

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