What is this contraption in my basement and why is it bubbling water

hoodie13hoodie13 punch broRegistered User regular
Howdy! I'm a new homeowner and it's the middle of summer and it's hot outside and now it's getting warmer inside. I think this is happening because one of my air conditioning doodads has ceased to function. There's this little doohickey next to my actual AC unit in the basement that Is making all sorts of struggling, gurgling sounds, and also happens to be putting water out of a little black hole on the top.

Our main level thermostat has now ceased to function, and we're not getting any cold air blowing.

What is this thing and how do I make it behave?

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PSN: HoodieThirteen
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  • dispatch.odispatch.o Registered User regular
    edited July 2017
    I can't be certain but many ac/furnace units have a system where they evaporate condensation generated by the heating/cooling process in a secondary pipe that drains back to a humidifier or venting setup. A byproduct of compression/expansion of cooling agents (freon, liquid nitrogen, etc) is frost/melt and condensation. I would wager that the fluid reservoir that captures/disposes of this moisture has stopped working. You may be able to find a manual drain. It could also be an actual dehumidifier that has failed.

    If you can find a drain, and drain off the water, you may find your AC works again until it has to be drained again, and this also may not be super-healthy for the system in general.



    Edit:



    Condensation Pump.

    Edit2: It may be you're in luck, as some newer AC units have the condensation pump integrated into the unit and you don't know it's failed until it's caused damage substantially shortening the life of the AC system.

    Sounds like one of your lines may be clogged or the pump has died, if your AC unit is water logged you need to square that away before you keep trying to turn it off/on.

    dispatch.o on
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  • BurtletoyBurtletoy Registered User regular
    If the thermostat stopped working, that is probably why the ac isn't working. It needs a signal from the thermostat to turn on/off. You should be able to get a new thermostat for ~$30 at home depot or where ever, but if doesn't have power/isn't working, your ac won't turn on

    Smrtnik
  • hoodie13hoodie13 punch bro Registered User regular
    Thanks forthe help so far!
    Burtletoy wrote: »
    If the thermostat stopped working, that is probably why the ac isn't working. It needs a signal from the thermostat to turn on/off. You should be able to get a new thermostat for ~$30 at home depot or where ever, but if doesn't have power/isn't working, your ac won't turn on

    Well, it WAS working, but it was saying "connection lost" and flashing "cool on", which a manual search said meant that the compressor wasn't operating correctly.
    dispatch.o wrote: »
    I can't be certain but many ac/furnace units have a system where they evaporate condensation generated by the heating/cooling process in a secondary pipe that drains back to a humidifier or venting setup. A byproduct of compression/expansion of cooling agents (freon, liquid nitrogen, etc) is frost/melt and condensation. I would wager that the fluid reservoir that captures/disposes of this moisture has stopped working. You may be able to find a manual drain. It could also be an actual dehumidifier that has failed.

    If you can find a drain, and drain off the water, you may find your AC works again until it has to be drained again, and this also may not be super-healthy for the system in general.



    Edit:



    Condensation Pump.

    Edit2: It may be you're in luck, as some newer AC units have the condensation pump integrated into the unit and you don't know it's failed until it's caused damage substantially shortening the life of the AC system.

    Sounds like one of your lines may be clogged or the pump has died, if your AC unit is water logged you need to square that away before you keep trying to turn it off/on.

    Oh man that's exactly it! I'll take a look at this and see what I can do. Thank you!

    PSN: HoodieThirteen
    XBL: Torn Hoodie
    @hoodiethirteen
  • EncEnc A Fool with Compassion The Land of Flowers (and Dragons)Registered User regular
    edited July 2017
    So there likely is a floater or bob inside the condensation chamber that, when it floats up to a certain height, tells the AC to shut off to prevent flooding when your drain pipe backs up and the pan fills. In my region, we dont have basements and these are located on the ground floor, looking more like a flat pan with a pvc that drains out into the yard through gravity. My guess is that with the basement it has a pump to push the outflow out into the ground floor somewhere on your grounds and the pump itself has failed (as others mention).

    Enc on
  • hoodie13hoodie13 punch bro Registered User regular
    Yup, so it looks like the pump isn't pumping properly. I have a couple things to test, mostly cleaning the reservoir and checking the little hose pipe spigot thing. If they're busted, then its just as simple as replacing the pump.

    Thank you all so much, knowing what I was looking at has helped a great deal!

    PSN: HoodieThirteen
    XBL: Torn Hoodie
    @hoodiethirteen
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  • tastydonutstastydonuts Registered User regular
    edited July 2017
    various flora can grow inside the reservoir. you should get yourself some pan tablets, as that maybe how the pump got clogged.

    the water gets "chunky."

    be sure to clean the tube that leads into wherever the pump is draining, as there may be gobs in there too.

    tastydonuts on
    “I used to draw, hard to admit that I used to draw...”
    hoodie13
  • MugsleyMugsley Registered User regular
    Use some vinegar when you clean reservoir or pipes.

    TOGSolidhoodie13
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