Boulder City Magazine is a monthly publication full of information about Boulder City and Southern Nevada. Boulder City Magazine features the Boulder City Home Guide, a real estate guide to Boulder City and Southern Nevada.

Home Care
by Scott Sauer
Advanced Structural Inspections

Condensate Drain Lines
Your heating, ventilation and air conditioning equipment, or HVAC system, should be serviced twice a year. Service should be in the spring before the summer heat, and then again in the fall, before the winter cold. Unfortunately, most people tend to ignore this recommended maintenance.

The HVAC system plays an important role in our homes as it circulates and filters dust and dirt, as well as removes any excess moisture in the form of condensation from the air. When condensation forms in the system and does not adequately drain, poor indoor air quality may be the result.

As the air passes over the cold coils, condensation forms and drains into the bottom of the equipment. It then drains out of the home by the primary condensate drain line. The primary drain line can generally be found at the exterior of your home, near the ground. If the primary line gets clogged, water will build up in the system until it spills over a secondary condensate drain line. The secondary line can usually be found over a window, door, the garage or entryway. You should locate these drain lines around your home, and monitor them as part of your regular maintenance program.

If you have your HVAC equipment evaluated regularly, then be sure to ask your service provider about the condensate drainage system to insure it is clean and clear of any obstructions. Monitor the drain lines regularly and have the equipment serviced immediately if water is draining from the secondary line or if a significant amount of rust is noted at the primary drainage location.

This may be most noticeable when the system is activated for the heating cycle during the winter. After the summer the system is shut down, the water evaporates, the rust dries and any microbes are left as a bio-film over the rust. When the system is activated for the heating cycle the first time, the air passes and picks-up this particulate and deposits it into the interior of our home. The family then breathes these allergens and may notice a reaction to these contaminants. So, take a few minutes to find the condensate drain lines around your home. And remember that routine maintenance of your HVAC system is an important part of caring for your indoor air quality.

For more on this or other home care subjects, contact Scott at

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