How to Clean a Drain Pan on an RV AC

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An air condition cools an environment by removing the moisture from the air. The moisture is transferred through a series of coils to a drain line, which ends up in a drain pan. When a drain pan becomes clogged with dirt, debris or other buildup, it will prevent the system from cooling properly and may even lead to leaks and other damage. Fortunately, keeping a drain pan clean is a simple do-it-yourself task.

Things You'll Need

  • Shop vacuum
  • Remove the shroud and evaporator cover.

  • Locate the drain line that feeds into the drain pan and place a shop vacuum suitable for wet or dry use at the end of the line. Turn on the vacuum and suck the tube clean.

  • Using an air compresser, blow out the drain line to ensure there is not additional buildup that will clog the drain pan.

  • Remove the cover from the unit and vacuum out the drain pan with the shop vacuum.

  • Clean the coils in the drain pan with a solvent, such as Formula 409, and water, if the above steps have not sufficiently cleaned the pan.

  • Replace the cover and operate as usual.

Tips & Warnings

  • Lay protective cloths around the drain pan to avoid contaminating the surrounding area with water and cleaner.

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