Q: How can I prevent algae from growing in my air conditioner’s condensation pump?
A: It’s a good idea to get rid of algae from a condensation pump because a buildup can block water flow and cause a leak inside your home. As water sits in the pan waiting to drain, algae has more time to grow, so empty the drain pan manually during the hotter months especially if you notice standing water in the pan. Place algae pan strips or tablets in the air conditioner’s drain pan. This treats the water before it moves into the condensation line, preventing algae from growing (replace twice a year). Or, drop algae tablets into the line if your system is an open-line system that doesn’t use a drain pain (replace every six months). Another option is to pour a cup of bleach into the condensation line. Most drain lines have an access joint at the top. Unscrew the cap and pour in the bleach. Most lines only need to be flushed with bleach once a year, but if you continue to notice algae growth starting, flush the line twice a year. Also available are liquid additives designed to prevent algae growth in the drain line or directly in the pump. These additives usually must be added every 90 days while the unit is in use.