In which cases can the indoor or outdoor unit of the air conditioner leak?

Imagine the following scenario: you turn your air conditioner on and notice a water leak. In this article, we'll touch on what leaking water from your air conditioner may be caused by, whether it's dangerous for you, and how quickly you should take action.

We'll look at possible causes and solutions to make it as easy as possible for you to troubleshoot. It is important to note that many things can cause the same problem, so the most important thing is finding the exact cause.

Problems and solutions for air conditioning water leaks

Problem 1: Condensation leaking from the air conditioner indoor unit

The most common cause is a blocked air conditioner drain pipe, which may have accumulated dirt. Because of this, the water that needs to drain is backing up into the indoor air conditioner unit.

If you notice this, the first thing to do is turn off your air conditioner. Leaking water can damage both the unit and your home. You can try unclogging the drain line by removing the dirt stuck in it. If the problem persists after that, the drain line may be rusted or the condensate pump damaged. It is best to seek the help of an air conditioning specialist to find the exact problem and fix it.

Problem 2: Water leaking from the outdoor unit of the air conditioner

In some cases, water starts to collect right below the condenser. This is normal on hot and cold days. However, if you notice it happening consistently, chances are it's related to a problem.

The cause could be damaged or dirty air filters. It could also mean a clogged drain line or a damaged condensate pan. All of these items should be replaced and cleaned. If you don't know how to handle it, air conditioning specialists can do it for you.

Problem 3: My air conditioner leaks water when it's turned off

One cause of this problem is low refrigerant. In addition, the air filter may be dirty, it is also possible that the condensate pan is damaged or the drain line is clogged.

If the air conditioner is leaking water even when it is turned off, try cleaning the filter and see if that helps. If the problem persists, leave the unit off and seek professional help.

Is the air conditioner leaking water dangerous?

Usually, when people notice a problem of this sort, they panic. Do not worry, as you are safe. What you need to understand is that you need to fix the damage as soon as possible.

The only dangerous situation is if the air conditioner is leaking liquid, as this could be refrigerant that eventually evaporates in the form of gas. Refrigerant contains toxic substances that are harmful to humans and the environment. So if you suspect a refrigerant leakage, seek help from a specialist immediately.

How do I know if my air conditioner is leaking refrigerant?

There are several signs that your air conditioner may be leaking water or refrigerant:

  • Your electricity bill is unusually high
  • The air conditioner blows cold in heating mode or vice versa
  • It takes too long for the unit to reach the set temperature
  • Ice collects on the copper lines or evaporator coils

Since these are just signs, which are not impossible to indicate other faults in the air conditioning system, if you notice any of them, seek the help of a professional who will locate the fault and fix it.

What can a refrigerant leak do to a human?

When this gas is released into the air and you breathe it in, you may feel that you have difficulty breathing, headaches, nausea, skin or eye irritations. As a result of these symptoms, the condition can become more serious such as heart rhythm problems, seizures and other health problems. In case you have been exposed to a refrigerant, contact a doctor to examine you and prescribe the necessary treatment.

Can we use the air conditioner when there is a water leak?

Your air conditioner will probably be able to continue to operate even if there is a water leak, as not all parts will be affected at the onset of the problem. However, we advise you to turn the unit off and try to determine if it is water or refrigerant and call an air conditioning maintenance company.

This will make sure that the problem will be detected and solved in the best possible way. 

For more tips related to the maintenance and operation of air conditioning systems, follow our blog. On our site, you can check out some of the best air conditioners on the market - those made by Fuji Electric - and find information on the distributors you can buy them from. Don't hesitate to contact our team if you need any advice.