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Phil
Phil, Mechanical Engineer
Category: HVAC
Satisfied Customers: 5923
Experience:  Retired HVAC/ Electrical & Boiler contractor. Industrial
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I have dripping condensation from my geothermal systems installated

Resolved Question:

I have dripping condensation from my geothermal systems installated ductwork. Is this normal? If so, how do I reduce the amount of condensation?
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: HVAC
Expert:  Phil replied 1 year ago.
Welcome to Just Answer!.

Water dripping from the duct work is not OK. it is caused by a clogged up condensate drain line on systems that have been installed for a few years....

.... on brand new systems it is caused most frequently by the cold air supply running colder than 45 or 50 degrees F... that happens when a system is designed with ducts too small, or there is not enough air flow for various reasons.

Let me know how old the system is, put a thermometer in the cold air outlet closest to the air handler inside the house, and tell me what the temperature of the air is.... we can go from there until we arrive at a solution..

Phil
Customer: replied 1 year ago.


Phil, new system installed 2010. Have no thermometer available but the house has three zones and the temp is 75 degrees

Expert:  Phil replied 1 year ago.
Hello again, the unit is two or three years old, if it was designed with too small of duct work and running air that is too cold it would have had the problem from the start.

So.... the problem is most likely a clogged drain pan or drain line, That sits just below the cooling coil... the drain line is generally white PVC plastic. about an inch in diameter ) 3/4" rated.

Remove the service panels in that area and inspect for debris in drain pan, or pan not draining or a dirty cold coil... a dirty cold coll will cause the coil to 'spit' water droplets.

Let me know what you find, we can go from there.

Phil
Customer: replied 1 year ago.


Phil, the drain pan or line was inspected four days ago by a Tech from the company that installed the system. This technician reinstalled installation leading directly from the system. I am still experiencing the condensation problem to which the Tech was to resolved. The system is located in the garage on a platform with ductwork in the garage as well as under the house in the basement. Even the ductwork in the basement is generating condensation,

Expert:  Phil replied 1 year ago.
Hello again, an experienced tech would have solved the problem... often times a company sends out apprentices on what it thinks will be a simple job.

If the duct work in the basement itself is leaking water, it could be that the ducts are running below the 'dew point'.. thats 45 or 50F in real humid environments such as the Gulf coast area of the US.

examine the ducts exposed sheet metal couplings for signs of condensation...

If you have pets indoors, and live in a rural farm area, there could be enough debris in the air to have partially clogged the cooling coil, causing it run colder, and produce air below the dew point.

You will have to buy a thermometer to check that air duct temperature, Grainger industrial supply carries the ones with long pointed metal probe you can poke into the air ducts.

We will keep working with this until we get the issue resolved. I am currently traveling in central America with spotty internet access...and will be going to bed in 4 or 5 hours.... so I might be late in responding. Its generally workable however.

I am in all day weekdays from 7 am to 11 pm...with time of for lunch and to do research on my 'day job' (engineering projects).

Phil
Customer: replied 1 year ago.


Phil, I live on the East coast, North Carolina, in a flood area zone. I purchased this house seven months ago and have no idea of the experience of previous owner. The house is elevated (Brick enclosed basement) to compensate for flooding. All ductwork in garage and basement is installated. The long drain line is not. I will be calling the installing company again tomorrow to let them know that the problem still exist. Hopefully they will resolve this. I thank you for your information and responses which I will use in conversing with the company's Tech. I need no more information. Again, thanks.

Expert:  Phil replied 1 year ago.
Hello again, you are welcome.

I will put the ratings box up so you can rate my responses so far *positively... that way I can hold the question open for you and continue with more coaching and advice depending on what the contractor finds is wrong.

Phil
Phil, Mechanical Engineer
Category: HVAC
Satisfied Customers: 5923
Experience: Retired HVAC/ Electrical & Boiler contractor. Industrial
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Retired HVAC/ Electrical & Boiler contractor. Industrial