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Water in Floor Vents Indicates a Problem

Oklahoman Published: May 3, 1997

BIOG: NAME: UPD: 19970505 -TEXT-

Editor's Note: The Oklahoma Residential and Commercial Inspectors Association provides answers to questions from property owners biweekly in this column.

The organization is a nonprofit professional society established in 1992. Volunteer membership consists of private, fee-paid home inspectors and associates who try to promote excellence within the profession and continued improvement and services to the public.

Questions should be directed to the Central Oklahoma chapter at P.O. Box 60423, Oklahoma City, OK 73146.

Q: What should I do if I see water in my central heating/cooling floor air delivery vents?

A: Any moisture in your floor boots indicates that water is or has been under the floor slab. This can result in a least three undesirable things. First, for some people this can trigger or aggravate allergic reactions which can vary from mild to severe. Second, damage to the heating and cooling system can occur. And third, in extreme cases it can cause instability in the foundation and concrete floor slabs.

If you see water in any vent, you should examine all of the other boots and ducts for water. If it is only in one vent, you need to first eliminate the possibility of an interior source, such as over-watering a house plant, a leaking aquarium or someone spilling water nearby. If nothing is found, make a note of the weather conditions and the location of the vent, and then watch to see if it remains in the vent or comes and goes.

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