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Clogged Condensate drain lines


Renron
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Howdy to all the other HIs out there! Thanks for your future response(s). Being a new HI and knowing the (lack)quality of new homes being built. I know to look for a secondary pan and a vent/cleanout on the primary drain line. But how do I test the condensate line for blockage?

Also, is that a vent or cleanout b4 the trap? and should it be open to the atmosphere?

Thanks for helping out a newbie lurker.

Ron

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Well, then.

I don't think you can test a condensate drain for blockages effectively when the unit isn't running. When it is running,if the drain is blocked, it's obvious. If I'm wrong, then the esteemed Moderator from Michigan will correct me and enlighten us all.

Besides being a handy little relief port for home inspectors, the opening is a vent. It should remain open to the atmosphere for both purposes.

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Originally posted by Jim Morrison

The only way a diligent HI can test the drain for blockages is to pee in it.

Uh, Jim...

What if it is clogged? It'll fill quickly, then start to overflow. Can you cut it off like a washerless faucet? I can't. [:-sour]

Brian G.

What's That Smell Honey? [:-yuck]

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Originally posted by Brian G.

Originally posted by Jim Morrison

The only way a diligent HI can test the drain for blockages is to pee in it.

Uh, Jim...

What if it is clogged? It'll fill quickly, then start to overflow. Can you cut it off like a washerless faucet? I can't. [:-sour]

Directly from my boilerplate:

Failed under testing.

The condensate drain beneath the attic air handler overflowed when I peed into it. Isuggest you clean up the resulting putrid mess and try clearing the drain with a teeny weeny plunger.

Suggest further investigation by a qualified professional.

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Well I read renrons question and was going to suggest that he pee in it. Seems however that suggestion was taken.

Most of the houses in Michigan have basements. the furnaces are in the basement. In other words, no pan.

Look for and learn to interpret the water marks.

The presence, absence, depth of the stains can all tell you a story as to how everything was working the last time the unit was running.

However, If it has been off for a long while and it is too cool to run test, and you really need to know if it is blocked .... pee in it.

George

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Hi,

I just had another mental image of a naive new guy trying to furtively pee into one of these lines without getting seen/caught. [:-bigeyes2]

I'm sure he knows this is all in jest. However, if I could make another suggestion, the next time your wife gets ready to toss an empty dish detergent bottle - you, know the ones with the little snap-shut dispenser top - rinse it out, fill it with water and save it for when you have to test these. [:-idea]

ONE TEAM - ONE FIGHT!!!

Mike

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Mike,

I am sure that would indeed work in some instances. Depending on the length of the drain and the location of any obstruction.

However, a fish tape can be used for more than just fishing you know. It works well not only finding an obstruction, When slightly modified at the tip (sharpened), it can clean an obstruction.

You could also carry a 5 lb jug of CO2 with an adapter hose with an 18 inch piece of 1/4 inch copper tubing to blow through the line, if you are like Chad and don't want to use your lips.

George

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Originally posted by Jim Morrison

Failed under testing.

The condensate drain beneath the attic air handler overflowed when I peed into it. Isuggest you clean up the resulting putrid mess and try clearing the drain with a teeny weeny plunger.

Suggest further investigation by a qualified professional.

Awright Morrison,

What's the Guinness count for today? If you can't say it, try to hold up some fingers...

Brian G.

Suggest Further Investigation Into Morrison by a Qualified Professional [:-dopey]

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New I am, niave I am not. (says with the voice of Yoda)

I have sulked in the dark corners of this board for almost a year, afraid to come into the light of your wisdom. I think I shoulda waited a little longer.

I'm grateful for all your comments, yes all, and enjoy the sense of humor we posess. I'll take the suggestion of the empty water bottle instead of the empty bladder test method.

Thanks Guys your help is very much appreciated.

I'll Be Back.

Ron

CREIA Inspector

General Contractor

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Hi Ron,

Welcome to TIJ. There's no need to 'sulk' in corners at TIJ. All are welcome here and we make it a point to try and keep it as friendly and respectful as possible. Ergo, the playful dissing of one another. Besides, there are many who will question the 'wisdom' of quite a few of these characters.

Now me? I'm perfect. Just ask me. [:-bigmouth]

ONE TEAM - ONE FIGHT!!!

Mike

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Originally posted by Renron

They might have to change the name of the show to "The House ****."

Boooo....Hissssss.......Snarlllllll.....

Renron,

There are ladies present.

AND, I don't have an inspection today so I am sitting in an office at my sons company just looking for something to do.....sorry. I did chuckle before editing.

George

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Jim,

Yes, I have seen it 3 times. Once about a year ago, 3 or 4 weeks ago and one time in between. I have seen Marion once and Reggie twice. They did fine, considering they only have 2/ 10 minute segments to cover a 3 hour plus inspection. I don't think it helps or hurts our cause, it's bland, slow moving and doesn't contain anything even a first year inspector would call educational.

However, when I know you are going to be on, I will watch just so I can come here and heckle you.

George

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I was clicking around 2 weeks ago and hit that show, already in progress. A lady had called the HI out to see if she could add another full story to her house....say what?! He notes a long, slow dip across the top of the garage door opening, climbs onto the roof, and from there declares it sound (the roof)! While up there he sees that a few other houses in the neighborhood have added another floor, so it looks good for the moment! Then he checks the main panel...it's overloaded, and must be repaired! He never mentioned that it was an FPE panel. In the end, he reffered her to an engineer (what a novel concept under the circumstances). That's what I would have done when she called me.

And this guy was on TV representing all of us, like it or not. [:-banghead]

Brian G.

I'd Pay to See Jim's Episode [:-bonc01]

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