Have you noticed part of your AC system or pipes sweating and covered in water? Sweating pipes are all about humidity and temperature: If you notice this problem, it's important to find the right solution before you get moisture damage in your floor and walls! Here's what to know.

Humidity and condensation

That dripping water is condensation, which occurs when water vapor in the air comes in contact with a cold surface. Enough condensation and that water starts running off your pipes and into surrounding materials, possible problems with wood rot, mildew, and more. As you can imagine, this is more likely to happen in humid environments or hot months. You are most likely to see condensation on:

  • Pipes: Specifically cold-water pipes in warm places (think basements, crawlspaces, attics) can produce condensation. This may be more common on metal pipes, which conduct thermal energy more easily and so often grow colder than other pipe materials.
  • AC Ductwork: The inside of your ductwork - especially older, poorly insulated, or non-insulated ductwork - can also gather condensation.
  • Toilets: If you see condensation on a toilet that's not immediately connected with a steamy shower, it means that there is too much water vapor in the bathroom.

Potential Solution: Ventilation

Ventilation is a great solution for attics, bathrooms, and often basements as well. Sweating plumbing in these areas usually means that there isn't enough airflow to move humidity and hot air out. Installing more fans and vents can prove a very effective solution. Contact a professional if you aren't sure what sort of ventilation to add but it typically depends on cubic feet of air in the room, as well as its location.

Potential Solution: Insulation

"Doesn't insulation make things warmer?" you may be wondering. It does, but it can also help protect pipes from condensation issues by preventing water vapor from forming on the cold pipe surface. Your plumber may suggest insulating cold water pipes in certain areas to help prevent problems with sweating. Sometimes failed sealant can also create condensation problems, so resealing plumbing with new insulating materials may also be an appropriate solution.

Talk to a Pro

Are you wondering if your pipes sweating pose a moisture danger in your home? If you're in the Atlanta metro area, give us a call or schedule a service appointment online today!

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