In most systems, the condensation produced is usually drained into the sewer, where the water gets this lost. Few people realize that this water can be re-used in areas that don’t involve humans. Normally, it can be used to irrigate the garden. One can reduce their utility expenditure by seeking to recycle air conditioner water and channeling towards such uses.
AC systems pull warm, humid air from a place and transform it into a cool draught which is channeled back into the space. When the warm air comes into contact with the coils of the unit, water vapor on the coils condenses. The liquid needs to be drained to avoid damaging the mechanical components of the unit and also curtail water damage to the structure housing the entire system. A typical domestic air conditioner can produce up to 20 gallons of condensate per day. For larger units, this amount could translate into millions of gallons each year.
All AC units which emit condensate are installed with some kind of drain line. Typically, this is in the form of a hose which drains from near the system’s coils. This then flows into a sewer line or a drain. By having the drain line run into a storage barrel, the condensate can be collected. This however needs constant checking to avoid overflows that would cause water damage.
In some instances, this would be necessary to drain the water to a specific location if the water needs to flow up a gradient, such as from a basement to a roof tank. It can also be used to pump the water directly into an irrigation mechanism. There are many different pump types available to suit various needs, most of which are relatively easy to install.
Commercial Harvesting of Condensate
Large buildings can collect the condensate on an enormous scale. This becomes necessary in dry areas where water is scarce. In Houston, Texas, large storage tanks and pumps are used in condensate harvesting in public buildings. In such instances, the large amount of condensate collected is used in cooling power plants. If this water’s going to be used domestically, caution must be taken as it may hold bacteria.