Cleaning an A/C Drain Line

You can prevent clogs and unclog your air conditioner’s drain line easily enough, as part of a simple routine cleaning. Although this is one of the most common reasons to call for a/c repairs, it can be accomplished in 5 or 6 easy steps by the owner.

When condensate is created by your A/C unit, it is carried away by the drain line. Because it carries that condensate the drain line is subject to mold and algae formation which in turn can cause dirt and debris to get caught and clog the line. It’s a domino effect. But it can easily be cleaned by using distilled vinegar. Follow these simple steps to clear the line.

  • Firstly, turn off your air conditioner. Turn the thermostat off and throw the breaker to shut the unit off, just to be safe.
  • Secondly, find your condensate drain line. It should be made of PVC and will be located close to your outside unit, as well as a PVC line exiting your blower unit in the attic. If you check in your attic you should find the PVC which will have a top access pipe with a cap over it.
  • Thirdly, remove the cap to reveal the access hole and using a funnel pour ¼ cup distilled vinegar into the hole. The distilled vinegar is very acidic which increases its cleaning properties.
  • Fourth, let the solution sit for a half-hour or so. Give it time to remove any clogs.
  • Fifth, flush the solution out with water until the water flows freely.
  • Sixth, replace the cap.

Do this monthly to clear your line. You can prevent problems such as water stains on your ceiling from a clogged line, or your A/C unit running but not cooling.

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