Heat Pump Problems

Commonly Occurring Heat Pump Problems

A heat pump can help to warm a home during the winter and make it cooler in the summer. The heat pump can pull in heat from the outdoors and send it into your home when you want it to be warmer. When you want your home to be cooler, the heat pump can pull heat from indoors and blow it outside.

The dual nature of the heat pump makes it an integral part of an efficient heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC) system. When a home relies on a heat pump for heating and cooling, it becomes a critically important element of both, so it is very important to ensure the heat pump is in optimal operating condition. Here’s a closer look at some of the more common problems that you might encounter with your HVAC system’s heat pump.

Constantly Runs

The heat pump should not run endlessly. It should run only long enough to help the heater and AC system do its job. If the heat pump does run almost all the time, there is a problem with it. The problem might be a faulty thermostat, a defective compressor, or something as simple as a dirty air filter. Your AC system might also leak refrigerant, have a dirty coil, or have the wrong size heat pump.

Produces Only Cold Air

If you are getting only cold air from your system, your winter days might be especially cold until you fix it. A heat pump blowing cold air is a real problem that you need to address as soon as possible. The problem might be a lack of refrigerant, a bad compressor, or a valve failure. It also might have debris built up inside the heat pump, have a defective deicing unit, or have a broken switch set to AC mode. It even might simply be that the outdoor air is too cold for the heat pump to draw in warm air and circulate it throughout your home.

Produces Only Warm Air

Most AC systems have a heat pump that removes the hot air from the inside to help make your home cool and comfortable on hot days. If the heat pump is not working right, it might just blow warm air, which could make your home very uncomfortable. Some of the more common causes of a heat pump producing only warm air include a defective compressor, a lack of refrigerant, or a dirty air filter. The system also might have a defective thermostat or other problems that make it impossible for the heat pump to remove warm air from inside your home.

Short-Cycling Problems

You might notice the HVAC system turns on, runs for a very short time, and then shuts off without making a significant impact on the temperature inside your home. Instead of heating or cooling your home to the temperature set by the thermostat, a short-cycling heat pump only runs briefly and then shuts off. Because the intended temperature was not reached, the thermostat cause the HVAC system to run again, and again, and again. The short cycling runs up your energy bill with no real benefit to your home.

Leaking Water

A faulty heat pump might cause condensation and liquid to leak from the unit. The leaking liquid might simply be a clogged drain line that does not enable condensation to drain away from the HVAC system. The AC also might have a refrigerant leak that causes water leakage near the heat pump. Whenever you see water leaking near the heat pump, it is best to contact an HVAC service to diagnose the issue and fix it as soon as possible.

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