Heat pumps are a great way to save energy. They combine heating and cooling systems by using energy taken from the air outside. Instead of heating cold air, heat pumps just move heat around, meaning they can be 30 to 40 percent more efficient than an air conditioner according to the U.S. Department of Energy.
Because of this complexity, heat pumps can face more problems during their lifespan than an air conditioner will.
Here are some problems that your heat pump might have and some ways to solve them.
Your heat pump has stopped working entirely.
- Check the system’s mode. Your system needs to be in a certain setting in order to work. It’s not going to heat unless set to heat.
- Check the thermostat. It needs to be a specific type in order to use a heat pump. It also might have lost power or needs to be reset depending on the type.
- Check your circuit breaker. Heat pumps are equipped with circuit breakers to protect their electronics from power surges. Check and reset your circuit breaker if needed.
- Check the wiring. If a heat pump abruptly stops, it’s likely not receiving power. Whether by you or by a professional, the wiring should be checked.
Your heat pump is not heating well enough.
- Clean the heat pump air filter. Problems that happen gradually can usually be prevented with regular maintenance.
- Clean off the condenser coils. These are often covered with dirt and can often freeze over.
- Make sure you have enough heat pump. Heat pumps don’t work as well as heaters at extremely low temperatures, since there is not enough heat in the air outside. The best way to solve this is to find some form of alternative heating.
If these simple solutions do not work, you may have to call a professional. Start with the contractor that helped install your system as they likely know its nuances.If you have any questions, feel free to contact the professionals at T.F. O’Brien Cooling and Heating. We are always glad to help.
Our goal is to help educate our customers about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems). For more information about heat pumps and other HVAC topics, click here to download our free Home Comfort Resource guide.