Rhonda asks “I had a plumber come in because there is a lot of water accumulating under my trailer. he tells me it is coming from the ac pipe, and that it is normal. But I’ve checked under my neighbors trailers and they do not have this problem, but at the same time i looked under the insulation and have no leaking pipes, besides the black plastic (ac hose) that is creating the puddles. why would this be doing this? what can i do to remedy it? and what is the best way to dry out the underneath of my trailer?”

There are several parts to this.  First of all, air conditioners remove a LOT of water from the  air as part of the cooling process.  This is especially true in humid climates.  The water has to go somewhere, and the usual solution is to let it drain under the home.

I sometimes hear from people who have water in their heater ducts, wondering where it came from.  The usual answer is the drain line clogged so the A?C condensate runs down the ductwork instead draining like it should.

In Rhonda’s case, I wonder if the soil under her home has more clay than her neighbors.  That would prevent the water from draining into the soil quickly.  It could also be that her lot was not properly sloped so water accumulates there.

The easiest solution to the drain line problem seems to me to be adding an extension so the water from the A/C drains away from her house.  Some cheap plastic tubing should do the job.  At least until the kids/dogs chew it up or tear it loose.  I suppose it could get exciting if it got wrapped in the lawn mower too.

A badly slopped lot is a much bigger, more expensive, problem.  It would involve heavy equipment, ripped up landscaping and $$$.


After reading the above, Rhonda sent additional information.

“ its not only that is accumulating faster, but that i can even hear and see the water coming out of the ac pipe. i can turn my ac off all day and come home from work 12 hours later and there is just as much water coming out of the ac pipe as if it was running all day… and if i crawl under my neighbors trailer ( who has left their ac on all day ) u might see the odd drip coming out but is not too noticeable. also i do have a clay/mud kinda mixture under the trailer which does prevent it from sinking in”

Did you explain that to the A/C guy?  If so I don’t think he heard you.  Lots of repair guys (they are almost always male)  seem to have serious hearing loss; especially with female customers.   The only way I know to counter this problem is to forcefully stick to your guns, but that’s hard to do when you don’t really know what is going on yourself.

At this point I have to confess my ignorance of A/C units.  I live in New Mexico and most people have evaporative coolers.  They are known as swamp coolers  or swampers and are a box with a pump in the bottom that pumps water over absorbent pads and a fan to pull air through them into the house.  They are cheap to run since there is no compressor, only a fan.  On a summer day they can often drop the outside air temperature 25 degrees.  They don’t work well once the humidity gets over 50% but that  doesn’t happen to  often here.  :)  So I have no experience with compressor driven A/C units.

So, knowing nothing about how compressor driven units work,  it sounds like there must be a float valve or something like it, that hasn’t shut off.  I’m thinking these combined A/C & heating units feed water into the system to provide humidity in the winter when the furnace is running.  With the symptoms you describe, that sounds like a water supply valve in yours is stuck open.

I would be happy to hear from someone who knows more.







I know that.  Everyone who has done home renovation or repair projects knows that.  He still sneaks up on you!

We have extremely hard water.  Living in New Mexico we also have very dry air.  As a result the faucets become covered with rock hard lime deposits quickly.  Our kitchen sink had been getting slower and slower.  It was also getting harder to swing it from side to side.  I had removed the aerator at the end of the faucet, soaked all the  parts in Lime Away, but it kept running slower and slower.  My thought was that lime/rust/particulates had accumulated where the sink supply line connected to the main house line.  To fix that I would have to take all the stuff out from under the sink, crawl under there and take it apart.  Depending on what I found, I might be able get by with flushing the lines, or I might have to buy a replacement.  At 67   it hurts to get down on my knees so I kept putting off fixing things.

The faucet is one of those on a pull out cable that can be used as a spray head.  Yesterday as I pushed on it to move it from one sink to another, the the plastic where the faucet threads into the cable broke.  I didn’t even know it could be unscrewed there!  Once it broke it was easy to see there was another metal mesh screen there and it was almost completely blocked with small chunks of rock hard lime!

With a Dremel tool and a cutting bit I was able to remove the broken off segment of plastic without damage to the fitting.  That was fun because it was quick and easy; plus, I had taken some verbal abuse for wasting money on another toy (tool).

With the mesh removed and the lime pieces cleaned away, the water flow was back to full force for the first time in years.  To make my happiness complete, I rescued the broken off faucet part from the trash and discovered there were enough threads left to let me screw it back on to the cable.  Obviously, it won’t take much sideways force, but it made the  sink functional again while we decide what to do.

Have you head the term Scope Creep?  Since the spray head is broken we could replace the faucet.  Since the faucet is old maybe this would be a good time to replace it.  (Spouse has already found a new one, on sale, online, while I work on this).  The sink itself is old, ugly and has lime deposits.  In fact, the whole counter could really stand to be updated!  Negotiations are in progress.

This morning I started doing dishes with my wonderfully abundant  hot water supply.  They had been accumulating in the sink for a week because the grandkids visited for a week and right after they left we had a septic tank/drain line clog (any chance there might be a connection between the two events?)   The clog happened late Friday so we had no drains for three days until they pumped the septic Monday morning and I snaked the drains.

But, life is good.  We got to take showers.  I had abundant hot water.  We had clean dishes again!

About a half hour in to catching up the dishes I happened to look down, and discovered I was standing in a large puddle.  Not a fun surprise on our wood laminate flooring.   Too bad I hadn’t thought about it sooner, but with half the threaded part broken off the spray head, it was too short to seal the connection.  It seemed to work OK, but with the spray head in its holder I didn’t notice it was leaking water.  The water ran unseen back down the cable and dripped under the sink.  These things are always terribly obvious in hind sight!

I thought those of you with repair experience would see the humor of it and be reminded of some of your adventures.  (Ones that happened enough time ago they seem funny now.)  Mobile Home Doctor gets visits from a lot of people with NO prior repair experience.  If you are one of them, I hope this helps you keep Mr. Murphy away.

If you are a renovator, remember that demolition is terribly quick, easy, and fun.  You would not believe how fast you can turn a faucet replacement into a kitchen renovation.

If you do an in-the-wall repair, don’t get in a really big hurry to cover the opening.  Give it a little time to see if your fix is holding.

No one anticipates everything, but hopefully you can limit the damage.  Good luck on your projects!


A Mobile Home Renovation Plan – A reader writes.

Mobile Home Renovation

Posted below are details about how one home owner approached the renovation of their mobile home.  You will need to make adjustments depending on your budget and skills, but it is a nice overview of the process. Amy and her husband bought a newer home that apparently came without water leaks.  If there are water […]

Read the full article →

Getting the most from your drill

Mobile Home Repair

I have mentioned elsewhere that a reversable cordless drill is the most useful tool you can have for working on a mobile home. Corded drills are cheaper and have more torque (twisting power) but the cord can be a pain if you are climbing a ladder or crawling under the home. Obviously, drills can be […]

Read the full article →

Adding a Pergola to a mobile home. A Reader Question

Mobile Home Renovation

Larry Asks: “I want to build a 9′x12′ pergola (2×6 joists and perimeter, 2×3′s on top fairly closely spaced to create shade) over a deck on the end of a 1996 Fuqua 24×60 mobile home. The 12′ dimension is parallel to the home. The home is structurally in excellent condition. My intention was to attach […]

Read the full article →

Do I HAVE to buy a mobile home rated water heater?

Mobile Home Repair

Your water heater fails so you go to the home improvement place looking for a new one.  You quickly discover that if they stock water heaters for mobile homes they cost at least $100 more than the same size and quality as those for site built homes.  Even worse, they not have any and want […]

Read the full article →

Should I Buy a Modular or Add On? A Reader Question

Mobile Home Renovation

A reader asks : “I have a 2010 14×76 single wide, what i want to do is basically add another 14×76 on to the existing structure, i know that i will have to have a secure foundation for the existing part and for the new part. What i want to know is, in your opinion […]

Read the full article →

Should I buy this home? A reader question.

Mobile Home Repair

A reader asks “I am thinking about buying a 2 bedroom 2 bathroom 966 sq ft older mobile home. for 1,500.00. The owner told me that the pipes needs to be replaced because at one time the pipes froze. In your opinion, what might the total cost be to repair the plumbing in this home? […]

Read the full article →

Adding a shingle roof. A reader question

Mobile Home Repair

A reader asks, “I have a 1989 14×70 mobile home. When I bought it and moved it into a park the manager of the park told me I would have to update the roof the following year. The roof on it is the older metal type roof. It does have a peak on it but […]

Read the full article →

Is a floor repair required? A reader question

Mobile Home Repair

A reader writes “faulty fitting on the dishwasher was discovered over Xmas dinner.. the new subfloor of 2 yrs is swollen in front of the dishwasher.. Flooring man wants “several hundreds” . today I have a heater in the dishwasher space , My question is if we dry out the subfloor through the lino would […]

Read the full article →