Evaporator coil leaks can be a real annoyance for Jacksonville homeowners. They increase air conditioning costs by making periodic refrigerant top-ups necessary, decreasing energy efficiency, and eventually making expensive A/C repairs a must. Fortunately, there are some things homeowners can do to delay or prevent evaporator coil leaks.
One thing to understand is that it’s normal to have water dripping from your air conditioner’s evaporator coil. The expansion of refrigerant in the coil draws heat from the surrounding air inside your house and causes water to condense out of the cool air and onto the coil. The water dripping from the coil collects in a condensate pan where it flows from your house. If your HVAC tech has to add refrigerant to your system every year, it’s a good indication that the coil is leaking.
Corrosion of the copper tubing in the coil from the outside in is the most common cause of evaporator coil leaks. This corrosion happens when formic acid accumulates on the coil as a result of the interaction of water, copper and volatile organic compounds (VOCs) in your indoor air.
VOCs are present in many household chemicals, personal products and new construction materials. Here in the Jacksonville area, salt in the air can also contribute to corrosion of various parts of your air conditioning system.
Here are some steps you can take as a homeowner to help prevent leaks in your A/C evaporator coil:
- Sign a long-term maintenance contract with your local HVAC pros. Having the coils cleaned once or twice per year will reduce corrosive buildups and extend coil life.
- Reduce the use of VOCs as much as possible inside your home. This will not only reduce coil corrosion, but it will also improve your overall indoor air quality.
- Consider installing a whole-house air purification system that includes ultraviolet (UV) lighting, which will neutralize VOCs. Provide a source of fresh air for your home, such as an energy-saving air exchange system that brings outdoor air inside.
Call us at Jacksonville Air Conditioning & Heating for help maintaining your A/C system in top condition.
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