How To Look At A House
McGarry and Madsen's home inspection blog for buyers of
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What is the small pipe sticking out of the eaves/soffit under the roof overhang?
Monday, June 18, 2018
When the air handler (interior unit) of a central air conditioning system or a water heater is located in an attic, both appliances are required to have a catch pan under them so that any water leakage will not cause damage to the ceiling and living area below. The pan under an air handler can have either a safety switch, that will shut off the system when it senses water puddling in the pan, or a drain to the exterior. Most systems have both installed. An attic water heater is simply required to have a drain to the exterior.
The drain must terminate at a visible location, so that the leakage can be observed by a homeowner and repaired. The drain piping usually runs across the attic to just past the nearest exterior wall and terminates downward a few inches below the soffit of the roof overhang. If you see water dripping from the small pipe at the soffit, it means that there is leakage from an air handler or water heater in the attic that requires immediate attention.
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To learn more about heating and air conditioning systems, see these other blog posts:
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