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  1. #1
    I was invited to inspect a new Lennox this morning. It is recently installed and leaking water.

    Model # CB29M-41-2G
    Serial # 5804M01466

    Location is Austin, TX.
    Application, school classroom.

    I read the instructions and found everything to be in order. This system is being operated in horizontal position, right hand blow. It comes from factory to be installed as is. (according to instructions).

    I checked for the diverter plate over the coil and it is oriented correctly.

    hmmmmm....

    I pulled the cover, found small amount of water in plastic pan underneath coil.
    Fan sucking air in correct direction. (these are 480V units)
    Drain line running free.
    I set my level on system and found she is leaning towards the drain pipe itself, ever so slightly.


    So tell me, how is water getting onto the floor?

    It is showing up on the floor BEFORE the air filter!!!

    When I pulled the filter, it was dry inside.

    The system has a large secondary pan underneath the forsed air unit itself. And this water is showing up outside of the pan. While the pan itself has minor amount of water inside.


    I dont usually investigate water related issues in these systems... this is a unique problem. Several guys have already looked at it and nothing has come from it.


    Thanks for the help, in advance.

    [Edited by R12rules on 05-25-2005 at 07:44 PM]

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Posts
    389
    Did you install a trap?? Is it possible the water is comming from somewhere else, leaking above on the duct work. whats abouve unit??

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jul 2000
    Location
    Guayaquil EC
    Posts
    10,331
    Situations like this are often caused by water that should drain off the coil into the pan but instead gets blown into the cabinet. Although I haven't tried it, I had a contractor friend recommend putting a clear plexiglas panel on the air handler in place of the standard panel so you can observe what's going on in there.

    Just a thought.

  4. #4
    Gentlemen, but sugestions are taken. There is a trap. And the clear window is about to be employed as this situation is taking place in several units on the project.


    Thanks for the advice.

  5. #5
    not enough return air will cause fan to pull the water out of the pan, also on pull through coils which is what you have there must be a ptrap installed in the drein line.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Aug 2003
    Location
    Fort Worth, TX
    Posts
    11,327
    Is this thing above ceiling tile and leaking onto it, staining the tile?

    A few things come to mind:

    P-trap vented downstream of trap vs. upstream, especially on pull-through coil. Common installer mistake to vent trap upstream. Makes trap useless.

    Secondary drain installed and trapped? Some pull-through handlers can also pull through the secondaries. I had a few Lennox air handlers in my building doing that until I fixed them. Were big time leakers until that was repaired.

    Suction lines and TXV's insulated right up to the air handler cabinet? Just a little exposed copper in a plenum space above ceiling tile can make for a lot of dripping onto the tile. No rubatex split anywhere on lineset, exposing copper?

    All drain lines leaving air handlers sloping downhill? P-trap not too shallow?

    How's the return, supply, and external static pressures? Within OEM spec? Blower speed sufficient?
    • Electricity makes refrigeration happen.
    • Refrigeration makes the HVAC psychrometric process happen.
    • HVAC pyschrometrics is what makes indoor human comfort happen...IF the ducts AND the building envelope cooperate.


    A building is NOT beautiful unless it is also comfortable.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Mar 2003
    Posts
    7,321
    does the drain line run in the direction of the leak and could it be sweating at startup until WB temp drops in the space?

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Posts
    11
    Quick spray with coil cleaner will eliminate oil on coil ,however attained, aeresols or from factory. I've seen water leap from the top of a evap coil and splash where it ain't supposed to through a small peep crack in door panel with flashlight. this rare situation humbled me several times.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Nov 2001
    Location
    Seattle, WA
    Posts
    7,760
    Not totally undersanding the installation (wish you could show some pictures) I would strongly suspect that the drain is somewhat empty which causes air sucked back into the unit which allows the coil moisture to get blasted in and around the inside of the unit.

    Either the drain is dry, partially dry which compounds the problem, or the drain is not deep enough to maintain a solid column of water to block the inrush of air.

    My bet is the drain. This comes from lots of this kind of experiences.

    Someone did a study of the speed at which inrushing air enters the inside of an air handler when the drain is on the negative side of the fan and it is empty. The speed was very high.

    The enterering air can and will keep the coil from draining plus propel the coil water all over the inside of the air handler and even down into the discharge side of the duct sometimes.
    "The American Republic will endure until the day Congress discovers it can bribe the public with the public's own money.
    - Alexis de Toqueville, 1835

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Greenville SC
    Posts
    431
    All of the above. Also check and make sure something isn't touching the coil like a piece of insulation that may be wicking the condensate away from the coil.

  11. #11
    Join Date
    May 2005
    Posts
    10
    Please post what you find out about this...I may be having the same problem...I have a 2.5 ton Heil split heat pump unit...the air handler is under the house...a week after it was installed, I smelled a moldy odor which I am highly sensitive to. The air in the house also felt humid. I checked the drain and it did not seem to be putting out much water. This was during the summer time. It had a standard...not running...trap on it. I looked at the owner's manuel and it recommended a deeper trap. So I called the installer to come check it and the sales rep. They checked the air handler and said there was no blown water towards the blower motor wall so the trap was fine. However, I noticed there were alot of condensation beads under the plastic drain pan...it is sloped...and some water in the insulation underneath it. They said this was normal and would dry out. They also checked the static pressure, drain line, returns, ducts, and freon. I am still having the problem.

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Jan 2002
    Posts
    255
    Several things could be the problem. First, as Airworx said, too high a negative static could pull water out of the pan.

    The second thing I've seen is the CFM is too high. If the velocity of the air across the coil is greater than 550 to 600 FPM it will pull the water off the coil.

    The last thing is, if there is an air leak at the under the bottom of the coil, the air that leaks out on the leaving air side is at a very high velocity (regardless of face velocity) and will spit water out into the unit and leak everywhere.

    Hope this helps.

  13. #13
    Ok folks, I believe we are onto something here.

    These systems being replaced are all new equipment, but the majority of the pre-existing ductwork is remaining in place.
    The company has manufactured transitions and such in order to tie into the old ductwork.

    And we dont have any idea of which systems were "problem childs" prior to our envolvement.


    Hmmmm.... sounds like the school hoped they would get rid of their troubles with all new equipment ....

    Possibly there are issues with the ductwork itself. I havent seen anyone bring airflow measurement insturements onto this project.
    That would certainly tell us what we need to know here.


    Too much airflow across the coil will bring water right off the coil and into the ductwork ..... hmmmm.....


    For my sake and for that of those here who are not air balance experts .... would someone please explain in simple terms, what is necessary in tools etc., in order to check out this system I am working on?
    Thank you in advance.



    And thanks for the great responces thus far.

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