We love heat pumps in West Palm Beach, FL. They are the ideal match for our climate and our energy needs. A heat pump provides powerful cooling during the long summers, and then can immediately change over to work as an energy-efficient heater. Compared to using an electric furnace, a heat pump can save a few hundred dollars a year for a household. And a heat pump never has to struggle with drawing heat into a house during below-freezing weather—because that doesn’t happen here!
But if you’ve tried to turn your heat pump over to heating mode
for the first time this winter, and nothing happened, your admiration for your
heat pump will take a quick dive.
Hey, malfunctions happen, even to the best machines with the
best installations. There are always solutions. We’ll look at what may be wrong
with your heat pump and how you can have them fixed.
The broken reversing valve
This is suspect #1 when a heat pump becomes stuck in one mode
or the other. The reversing valve is the key component that allows a heat pump
to change from cooling to heating and back. As refrigerant leaves the
compressor, it first enters this valve. Depending on the valve’s setting, the refrigerant
will either move toward the outdoor coil first (cooling mode) or the indoor
coil first (heating mode). If the valve becomes stuck, the heat pump won’t be
able to change modes. Fixing this usually requires putting in a new reversing
valve, and that’s a job for professionals only.
Lost thermostat connection
To change the reversing valve, the thermostat sends a signal
to the valve. The thermostat can lose this connection and the valve won’t move.
This is impossible to distinguish from a broken reversing valve if you’re a
non-professional, so let HVAC technicians make the diagnosis of whether the valve
or the thermostat needs the repairs.
Other thermostat faults
There are other troubles with the thermostat that can cause heat
pump problems. A miscalibrated thermostat may not sense the temperature in the
house correctly and fail to change the heat pump to the appropriate mode. Or
the thermostat may simply be programmed incorrectly. Experiment with the
settings to see if there’s a basic cause behind the problem.
Clogged air filter
If the air coming from the vents isn’t cool, but still isn’t
warm enough, the problem may be with a clogged air filter stopping enough air
from entering the heat pump in the first place. People often forget to
regularly change the filter at the end of summer, leading to this problem. We
recommend changing the filter every 1 to 3 months, with monthly checks to see
if the filter is ready to be swapped out.
These are more serious problems that can threaten the heat
pump’s overall operation. Not only will the heat pump not be able to heat if it
has a stuck compressor or leaking refrigerant, it won’t be able to cool either.
If you can’t figure out why your heat pump isn’t doing its job, leave the
detective work to our technicians. We’ll find out what’s wrong and have it
Call First Response Air Conditioning & Refrigeration: We have the coolest customers in town.