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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Oct 2003
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    Rockwall Texas
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    Default Bleeding Condensate Drain Line

    I'm baffled on this one. Me and the client stood there in horror watching something red like blood just draining out the condensate drain line. This was not orange in color like you'd see rust either.

    Looked inside the condensate line at the unit and water was clear.

    WTF is going on?

    Any suggestions? Or is it a "Miracle"?

    It did this for about 30 minutes and then cleared up.

    rick

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  2. #2
    Join Date
    Oct 2003
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    Rockwall Texas
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    Default Re: Bleeding Condensate Drain Line

    This was a foreclosure and has not been previously inspected per the listing agent. Home has been sitting vacant for near 2yrs.

    rick


  3. #3
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Plano, Texas
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    Default Re: Bleeding Condensate Drain Line

    There can be some pretty bizarre stuff growing in condensate lines. Often I have seen orange, black, brown growth in pans and drain lines but that bright red liquid is a first. Normally the growth will be semi solid but since the house was vacant, maybe a different species of algae or mold.
    To use Ted's phrase.
    Hmmmmm?

    Jim Luttrall
    www.MrInspector.net
    Plano, Texas

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Ormond Beach, Florida
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    Default Re: Bleeding Condensate Drain Line

    Foreclosure = someone may have poured paint down the condensate line and it accumulated downstream of where you were looking.

    If you look closely you will see a slight reddish discoloration in the bottom where you are looking down into that cleanout - 200x and then 400x magnification shows it more clearly with evidence of the reddish stain around the sides of the cleanout near the bottom of the vertical section.

    Jerry Peck, Construction / Litigation Consultant
    Construction Litigation Consultants, LLC ( www.ConstructionLitigationConsultants.com )
    www.AskCodeMan.com

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Location
    Portland, OR
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    33

    Default Re: Bleeding Condensate Drain Line

    Water with high iron content in copper can cause that but it sure looks awfully bright.


  6. #6
    Join Date
    Oct 2003
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    Rockwall Texas
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    Default Re: Bleeding Condensate Drain Line

    Here's the poor video of the horror.

    YouTube - Bleeding Condensate Drain line


  7. #7
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Plano, Texas
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    Default Re: Bleeding Condensate Drain Line

    Rick how long has it been since you had a drink. Looks like you need one "just to steady your nerves" before making a video.

    Jim Luttrall
    www.MrInspector.net
    Plano, Texas

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Oct 2003
    Location
    Rockwall Texas
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    Default Re: Bleeding Condensate Drain Line

    Jim,

    I wasn't holding the camera. My client was.

    rick


  9. #9
    Ron Bibler's Avatar
    Ron Bibler Guest

    Default Re: Bleeding Condensate Drain Line

    Thats sick Something must be leaking inside the unit. an oil is what I'm thinking. a lot of oils for compressor are red like that. Looking at the film one moe time it looks like an oil. its not mixing with the water.

    Best

    Ron


  10. #10
    Ted Menelly's Avatar
    Ted Menelly Guest

    Default Re: Bleeding Condensate Drain Line

    Quote Originally Posted by Rick Hurst View Post
    Jim,

    I wasn't holding the camera. My client was.

    rick

    Well then. He needs a Margarita or 3 or a sony steady shot camera.

    I never see the condensate drain lines cominbg out the edge of the slab like that. I usually see the tpr drain lines coming out the concrete like that.


  11. #11
    Richard Stanley's Avatar
    Richard Stanley Guest

    Default Re: Bleeding Condensate Drain Line

    Was that the Bates motel?


  12. #12
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Location
    gainesville fl
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    122

    Default Re: Bleeding Condensate Drain Line

    I am with Ted I was just thinking way did they go from pvc to copper for a condensate line? Are you sure thats not the TPR?


  13. #13
    Join Date
    Oct 2003
    Location
    Rockwall Texas
    Posts
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    Default Re: Bleeding Condensate Drain Line

    Ted,

    You must have never inspected a Fox and Jacobs home in the metroplex then if you never seen a HVAC condensate drain in the foundation wall as such. They usually are coming out the front exterior foundation wall and dripping into the waste drain cleanouts. First time they get blocked, some HVAC hacks the copper line off at the exterior to blow out the line, thus leaving the line as you seen in my picture.

    rick


  14. #14
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Fuquay Varina, NC
    Posts
    1,072

    Default Re: Bleeding Condensate Drain Line

    Sure the home wasn't winterized. They use a biodegradable pink solution for the traps. I guess billy Bob saw that one and said what the heck and poured some in!

    Mike Schulz License 393
    Affordable Home Inspections
    www.houseinspections.com

  15. #15
    Ted Menelly's Avatar
    Ted Menelly Guest

    Default Re: Bleeding Condensate Drain Line

    Quote Originally Posted by Rick Hurst View Post
    Ted,

    You must have never inspected a Fox and Jacobs home in the metroplex then if you never seen a HVAC condensate drain in the foundation wall as such. They usually are coming out the front exterior foundation wall and dripping into the waste drain cleanouts. First time they get blocked, some HVAC hacks the copper line off at the exterior to blow out the line, thus leaving the line as you seen in my picture.

    rick
    Yep I did go ovcer some old pics and reports and did find the copper condensate line. I guess I just don't do that many older homes in the area where they have done that. Most of the systems for the older homes are in a closet and they drain to the homes drainage under the closet unit.

    I stand corrected on never seeing them. As far as that red garbage I think Mike may be on to something with the homes winterization at one time.


  16. #16
    Alan Highland's Avatar
    Alan Highland Guest

    Default Re: Bleeding Condensate Drain Line

    Hey Rick,

    most likely it is dye, I was a HVAC contractor for years and when we had leaks we couldn't find, we put red dye in the system to help us locate the leak, and the condensate drain is one of the first places we looked, if the "A" coil is leaking, dye will be seen in the condensate drain.


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