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  1. #1
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Location
    CA
    Posts
    123

    Cleaning and maintaining condensate drain lines

    I havea question regarding cleaning and maintaining (somewhat) long pipe runs for condensate drains in walk-in coolers. Yesterday I was cleaning coils at my market and noticed the water I was spraying on the coils was draining slowly from the pan.There were a couple clean outs installed in the condensate drain and I removed the plugs and flushed with hot water through a garden hose...but I don't think I got it all. The algae had really reduced the diameter of the pipe. I've heard of drain "suckers" etc., but am dubious as to how well they work in clearing this type of accumulated slime out. I was thinking some type of chemical treatment....enzymes, etc.?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    NW AR
    Posts
    2,478
    I like to come out of the pan into a T then put a short piece of pvc sticking up so the customer can pour a little bleach through the line. I do it on residential installs and walk in coolers.

    Dont pour bleach into the tin pan under the coils, just through the drain line.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Location
    CA
    Posts
    123
    Quote Originally Posted by ar_hvac_man View Post
    I like to come out of the pan into a T then put a short piece of pvc sticking up so the customer can pour a little bleach through the line. I do it on residential installs and walk in coolers.

    Dont pour bleach into the tin pan under the coils, just through the drain line.
    Thanks...bleach makes sense. Will do. Probably not a bad idea for floor sinks draining condensate from cases either, I would guess?

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Location
    Cedar Rapids, IA
    Posts
    487
    Quote Originally Posted by Iceneck View Post
    Thanks...bleach makes sense. Will do. Probably not a bad idea for floor sinks draining condensate from cases either, I would guess?
    Putting tablets or pads in the drain pan will also kill algae in the drain line and help it stay clean. Spraying the coil with a coil cleaner at the beginning of the season is also a good pm step. If you have stuff growing in the line then it is also growing in the coil.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Location
    DFW, TX
    Posts
    675
    Can you not blow it out with CO2?

  6. #6
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Location
    CA
    Posts
    123
    Blowing out with c02 or n2 isn't even an option. I flushed it *hard* with 50 psi hot water for several minutes, still didn't remove it.

    I will look into the tablets...but dont think i'll ever use them. If water backs up and spills over the cond. pan, the chemicals in the tablet will spill all over the food underneath...which would create a major headache for me (tossing product, questioning product, etc). I can see that type of tablet's use in AC, but not in refrigeration.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Location
    Cedar Rapids, IA
    Posts
    487
    Quote Originally Posted by Iceneck View Post
    Blowing out with c02 or n2 isn't even an option. I flushed it *hard* with 50 psi hot water for several minutes, still didn't remove it.

    I will look into the tablets...but dont think i'll ever use them. If water backs up and spills over the cond. pan, the chemicals in the tablet will spill all over the food underneath...which would create a major headache for me (tossing product, questioning product, etc). I can see that type of tablet's use in AC, but not in refrigeration.
    Nu-Calgon makes a pan cartridge for ice machines that's food safe. But it might be too large for a WIC pan especially if you have defrost heaters. Health dept. would probably make you toss the food even if it only got wet anyway though.

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