I thought I remember being told that water should drip (condensation) from the bottom pvc that comes out of the house but it should never drip from the top pvc. I thought he told me that if it dripped from the top it meant the "pan" was full and needed to be emptied. I was told recently that it's normal for them to both drip some because of the humidity right now.

I'm not sure which answer is correct and if there is something I need to do about it now.

  • Do you have multiple HVAC units in the house, one upstairs and one down? Or are both pvc lines connected to the same unit? – BMitch Jul 31 '11 at 21:44
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    what do you mean by "top" PVC? can you provide a picture? – longneck Jul 31 '11 at 21:57
  • Yes, I have two units - one for the upstairs and one for downstairs. On the side of the house (the units are on the side of the house on the ground) there is piping that comes out of the wall of the house; one is from the top of the house and one is almost at the ground. Both are currently dripping right now...one is for the top unit and one is for the bottom unit. Does that make sense?? – Crystal McKinnon Jul 31 '11 at 22:53

When the forced air unit is in the attic sometimes the condensation is drained into a normal interior drain and a second, outside drain is used for overflow. The overflow drain is in a visible place so you know that the main drain isn't working and you can fix it. In fact I had this very problem a few weeks ago.

If you remember being told it should never drip from the upper drain, it sounds to me like it could be a secondary overflow drain. In that case it would be worth getting it checked out.

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  • +1 I had an AC guy check on my AC unit and they said the same thing. Water from the top drain is bad. It means something is wrong with the primary drain. – Chuck Conway Aug 1 '11 at 5:43

if by "top" PVC you mean the PVC tube coming out of your house that corresponds to your upstairs AC unit, then yes, this is normal. all air conditioners pull water out of the air as they cool, and that water has to go somewhere.

however, there is no definite answer we can give you because there are so many ways the condensate drain could be configured. in your old house, you might have had 2 condensate drains on one air conditioner. the second drain could have been installed so that if the pan was about to overflow, it went down the second drain instead. so the second drain serves as a signal that the first one is clogged.

in short, the only way to be sure is to have someone qualified trace the drain lines and figure out how these units are configured.

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  • Yes, that's exactly what I mean....so as long as it's just dripping it's ok? The ac guys at our last house said it shouldn't drip from there - if it does it means the drain pan is full in the attic?? – Crystal McKinnon Aug 1 '11 at 0:48
  • see my edits above. – longneck Aug 1 '11 at 2:40

I had the same problem -- lots of water coming out if the PVC that runs to the outside of the house. My main AC drain was clogged. My AC guy blew it out with compressed air. Research this before doing it yourself though.

Now I just need to figure out how to relocate or hide the ugly PVC that runs along the patio...

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No. It's not good. Go in the attic first and check the overflow pan. Mine was full. Nice tip for ya. I used a diaper to absorb all that water.but after that you may want to get it checked out for sure.

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