Of all the sounds you expect to hear coming from your HVAC, running water is probably one of the least common. What does it mean when this happens? How to fix it? Read on to discover the answers.
Why Does My HVAC Sound Like Running Water?
As you know, your HVAC unit makes all kinds of mechanical noises, from clicking and clunking to whirring, ticking, and beyond, including noises of dripping, splashing, or running water.
It makes sense: after all, water is one of the byproducts of the cooling process. As your HVAC system removes heat, some of the gaseous water in the hot air turns into water, which is collected in a drip pan, also known as condensate pan or drain pan.
A dripping sound now and then is normal: again, condensation is part of how your HVAC cools your home. But if your HVAC sounds like running water, this is usually a sign that there’s an issue derailing the condensation/cooling process. This may be due to some of the following:
NOTE: Remember to always turn off your HVAC when trying to troubleshoot an issue
- As always, look for the easiest fix first. Check the condensation pan to make sure it isn’t tilted or misaligned, causing water to drip. If this is the case, an HVAC pro can easily solve the problem.
- Then, look for possible leaks or cracks. A tiny leak in a drain pan can sometimes be sealed, but a big one usually means that you’ll need to replace the whole pan.
- Another possibility is that the condensate line is clogged by built-up dirt or debris. You can try to solve this using a wet/dry vacuum, or you can call an HVAC pro to take care of the blockage for you.
To learn more about sounds coming from your HVAC, check out our previous post, “My HVAC Sounds Like a Helicopter: What To Do?”
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