The weather is finally cold enough to warrant using a heat pump in heating mode instead of cooling mode. As you use your heat pump more often to stay comfortable, though, you should be aware that it will be more likely to develop issues during the winter. There are a variety of different problems that you might run into as you use your heat pump over the next few months. The faster you can identify them and take care of them, the better off your heat pump will be in the long run. Have a look at a few of the common heat pump issues you can expect to run into this winter, and how to address them.
Have you noticed some ice building up on the coils of the outdoor portion of your heat pump? If so, don’t worry. There’s no cause for alarm…yet. Ice will naturally build up on the outside of the heat pump’s evaporator coil, as it saps thermal energy from the air and lowers the temperature. The temperature drops below freezing in some cases, causing the condensation on the coil to freeze and form ice.
Normally, the heat pump uses a defrost cycle to periodically melt the ice off of the coils. If the ice is covering more than half of your heat pump coil, it may mean that the defrost cycle is not working for whatever reason. In that case, you should be sure to call a professional to have a look at it as soon as possible.
Even in winter, the heat pump relies on refrigerant to properly move heat from one place to another. If a leak develops in the refrigerant line, it will drain the heat pump of the fluid that it absolutely needs in order to heat the home. As the refrigerant levels in the system drop lower, so will the heating capacity of the system. Make sure that you call a professional if you notice fluid of any kind dripping from the heat pump, especially if the system appears to be struggling to generate enough output.
Short cycling is when the heat pump turns itself on and off every couple of minutes. It is often caused by a short circuit between the thermostat and the heat pump, causing the system to receive incorrect instructions. However, it can also be caused by a damaged compressor throwing off the system’s operating rhythm. If this continues for any length of time, it will increase the likelihood of problems developing with the heat pump. You’ll need to have a professional technician repair the system as soon as possible, if you want to spare your heat pump undue damage.
PRK Services, Inc. provides comprehensive heat pump repair services in Flower Mound, TX. If you need to have your heat pump repaired, contact us today for an appointment. We’ll make sure that your system is in good shape for the winter.