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Why do ACs Produce Water?

Mini-split ac freeze up

You’ve probably noticed water collecting beneath a window AC unit or had to clean up after a leak in your central air system. All air conditioners produce water during the cooling process; some is needed to help cool the air and the rest is flushed out the back of the unit.

AC units cool the air via coils connected to the condenser. One of the coils is hot and the other cold. The chemicals inside the coils repeatedly condense and evaporate, cooling the coils—which cools the air as it blows over them and forces moisture out of the air. Some of this moisture (water) is re-evaporated while the rest is pushed out the back of the system. The way air conditioners are built, you should be able to see the flushed out water, as it means the cooling process is doing what it’s supposed to. If you can’t see any visible water, then it’s likely that it’s being released within the system rather than out or possibly freezing onto the coils.


If you can’t see the water being produced by your air conditioner, then it could be leaking elsewhere in the system or inside your home. If this is the case, it might be as easy a fix as a clearing a plugged drain line. To verify, unplug your system and check the drain line. Clear it out and make sure it’s clean before turning the system back on.

Iced Coils

Ice can form on the coils when an excess of water is collected inside the unit and is continually blown onto the coils until it eventually ices over. When this happens, a system’s ability to perform is compromised. To de-ice, turn off the air conditioner and allow the ice to melt. If you can, tilt the unit slightly back so that any water will run out of the unit rather than in. If there is still ice after a period of time, you can thaw it with a hair dryer in an attempt to get the AC up and running again. If, after checking the plugs and the coils, your system is still leaking, call in the experts at American Air Cares. We are a licensed, bonded, and insured air conditioning company that will provide you with CARE—Courteous, Affordable, Repairs. Every time.


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