Heat pumps are one of the most efficient ways to cool and heat your home, especially in a moderate climate like Florida. However, like other mechanical equipment, heat pumps need to be inspected for any issues that may turn into bigger problems over time. Knowing the most common heat pump idiosyncrasies will tell you if you need to have professional heat pump maintenance or not.
Common Heat Pump Problems
- The heat pump isn’t running at all. Heat pumps use electricity. If nothing is working, it may be an electrical issue. Check the breakers that control the heat pump and air handler, and reset if necessary. If you can’t find the source of the problem, have an HVAC technician check it for you.
- The heat pump is banging, scraping or making loud vibration noises. Loud noises like that aren’t normal. Turn the unit off immediately and call for service.
- There’s ice on the heat pump. To heat your home, the heat pump will lower the temperature of the coolant in the exterior unit coils to well below zero. This causes humidity in the air to freeze and form a layer of frost across the coils and fins on the outside unit. Every 90 minutes or so, the heat pump will go through a defrost cycle to get rid of the layer of frost. If you see that the frost isn’t going away but continuing to build up, the heat pump may have a problem in the defrost cycle. Call in a professional to diagnose and fix the issue.
- The back-up heat is always on. Heat pumps have auxiliary heat coils that kick on to supplement your heat pump’s efforts when it’s especially cold outside. They should come on and turn off only occasionally. If you see the emergency heat coming on quite often or during moderate weather, you may have a problem with the pump’s main heating unit. Call your HVAC professional for an expert look.
To learn more about your heat pump and how to troubleshoot problems before they turn into repairs, call Preferred Air Conditioning & Mechanical, Inc. in West Palm Beach at (561) 202-1422 and in Port St. Lucie at (772) 905-3358.