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Old 07-16-2019, 10:46 PM   #1
ktex
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Default Air handler clog plus water hose = ?

My main ac condensation drain line appeared to be clogged and water was dripping through the back up line into the drain pan. The main line appears to run down to the washing machine line in the wall which I dont have access to (to suck the clog out with a shop vac). I took a water hose with sprayer attachment up in the attic, closed the end of the back up line and spayed a couple times into the top opening of the main line to back flush the clog.

When I opened the end of the back up line some fizzy water came out. Later I pour some bleach down the top of the mainline. Everything appears to be working fine and water is no longer dripping from the back up line.

Question is - could I have jacked anything up by doing this? Did I basically just spray water all within the inside of the air handler? I feel like a dumb...s for trying this w/out thinking it through.
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Old 07-16-2019, 11:28 PM   #2
-HIC-
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ktex View Post
My main ac condensation drain line appeared to be clogged and water was dripping through the back up line into the drain pan. The main line appears to run down to the washing machine line in the wall which I dont have access to (to suck the clog out with a shop vac). I took a water hose with sprayer attachment up in the attic, closed the end of the back up line and spayed a couple times into the top opening of the main line to back flush the clog.



When I opened the end of the back up line some fizzy water came out. Later I pour some bleach down the top of the mainline. Everything appears to be working fine and water is no longer dripping from the back up line.



Question is - could I have jacked anything up by doing this? Did I basically just spray water all within the inside of the air handler? I feel like a dumb...s for trying this w/out thinking it through.
If it is running you are likely fine. The only thing I would worry about is coil damage. The inside of that air handler/coil is likely fine if it is pulling temp. No worse than that coil being a big block of ice!

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Old 07-17-2019, 05:52 AM   #3
mudbone
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ktex View Post
My main ac condensation drain line appeared to be clogged and water was dripping through the back up line into the drain pan. The main line appears to run down to the washing machine line in the wall which I dont have access to (to suck the clog out with a shop vac). I took a water hose with sprayer attachment up in the attic, closed the end of the back up line and spayed a couple times into the top opening of the main line to back flush the clog.

When I opened the end of the back up line some fizzy water came out. Later I pour some bleach down the top of the mainline. Everything appears to be working fine and water is no longer dripping from the back up line.

Question is - could I have jacked anything up by doing this? Did I basically just spray water all within the inside of the air handler? I feel like a dumb...s for trying this w/out thinking it through.
Next time use an air compressor and air chuck to blow it out. Works fine on my system.
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Old 07-17-2019, 08:18 AM   #4
ktex
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Originally Posted by -HIC- View Post
If it is running you are likely fine. The only thing I would worry about is coil damage. The inside of that air handler/coil is likely fine if it is pulling temp. No worse than that coil being a big block of ice!

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Thanks man.
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Old 07-17-2019, 08:19 AM   #5
ktex
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Next time use an air compressor and air chuck to blow it out. Works fine on my system.
Yeah, Ill do this next time. Thank you
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Old 07-17-2019, 10:12 AM   #6
bigchiefj
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Start with a little air pressure so you don't damage the drain line. I put ball valve next to my drain pan so I can close it and prevent stuff being blown back into the pan when I hook up the air hose to the Schrader valve to blow the clog.
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Old 07-17-2019, 10:29 AM   #7
double bogey
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Cut the line near the coil and blow it both directions, put a new coupling or a rubber hose with hose clamps for future use. I keep hose and clamps made for this. Blow lines with air pressure, nitrogen if you have it, or in the old days, refrigerant. Or suck with wet vac. Oh, when you cut the line, better have something under it to catch the water that will come out. I don't use a water hose in the attic. Too much opportunity to screw up.

I dislike the installs where they run a line from the coil aux. connection to the auxiliary pan underneath. That line isn't very much higher than the main drain, and the airflow can cause water to splash into it and put water in the aux, pan without a drain being clogged. I use that connection for a float switch. Without the line being open, water doesn't go down it like an open pipe.
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Old 07-17-2019, 10:40 AM   #8
Briar Friar
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You could use the shop vac in the attic to suck and blow down that main drain line. Take some duct tape and make a seal around the main drain riser. Go down to washer valve box drain line opening and feel for either positive or negative air flow.

Or/also pour some colored bleach water down the main drain line and pop the sewer clean out...prolly on the corner of your house...and make sure the colored water is flowing out. Have a flashlight ready.

Double check to make sure you simply dont have a drain cock below one of your bathroom sinks. Of the 100 plus A/Cs I manage...only one runs the drain like you prescribed. I hate it...but it seems less likely to clog than ones that run outside.

Good luck. God bless!

Byron
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Old 07-17-2019, 10:48 AM   #9
double bogey
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If you think it could go to a bathroom sink, put a towel over the drain. If not, you may be cleaning some nasty crap off of the bathroom walls.
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Old 07-17-2019, 05:25 PM   #10
-HIC-
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THe EPA warns not to use a charging hose on your refrigerant to blow out clogs. If you dont have compressed air readily available in your attic.

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Old 07-17-2019, 06:46 PM   #11
double bogey
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Quote:
Originally Posted by -HIC- View Post
THe EPA warns not to use a charging hose on your refrigerant to blow out clogs. If you dont have compressed air readily available in your attic.

That was when R22 was less than $1.50 a lb and there probably wasn't an EPA.

I have been in the business long enough to see R22 at $.45 a lb. You would leave a couple of lbs. in a jug so you would have a lightweight tank to blow drains with. They didn't have check valves then, so you could always dump a couple lbs in an empty can.


I'll say it again, if refrigerant in the atmosphere kills us, I have done my part.
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Old 07-17-2019, 07:36 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by double bogey View Post
That was when R22 was less than $1.50 a lb and there probably wasn't an EPA.

I have been in the business long enough to see R22 at $.45 a lb. You would leave a couple of lbs. in a jug so you would have a lightweight tank to blow drains with. They didn't have check valves then, so you could always dump a couple lbs in an empty can.


I'll say it again, if refrigerant in the atmosphere kills us, I have done my part.
I was being sarcastic! I have do e my part as well!

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