Polar Bear Air Conditioning & Heating Inc Blog : Posts Tagged ‘Heat Pump Repair’

Heat Pump FAQ: Why Is There Ice on My System?

Monday, February 13th, 2017

heat-pump-outdoor-unit

The heat pump is an excellent HVAC option for those homeowners interested in great versatility and efficiency. Like any other heating and/or air conditioning system, though, the heat pump is not perfect. Eventually, you are going to run into trouble with your heat pump in Alexandria. When you do, remember that you depend on our team to diagnose that problem accurately and to resolve it entirely.

Now, you should also keep in mind that certain problems with your heat pump may not be exactly what they appear to be. In fact, certain issues may not actually be “problems” at all. This is the case with the icing over a heat pump in the winter. It is not an unforeseen issue, and is one that heat pumps are actually equipped to deal with. Even so, in certain cases, this ice could prove more problematic than usual.

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Washington DC Heat Pump Guide: Common Heat Pump Performance Problems

Monday, September 10th, 2012

The heat pump in your Washington DC home needs to work year round to provide heat and air conditioning. This is why you want to make sure it’s performing as efficiently as possible to save on energy costs and prevent break downs. You should schedule an annual maintenance check-up and inspection with a certified HVAC technician to test the efficiency levels.

However, there are a few common causes of performance issues to be aware of so that you can be sure your Washington DC heat pump performs at optimal levels. Call Polar Bear if you have questions about heat pump performance issues, or to make an appointment for an annual inspection and professional cleaning.

Airflow Issues

There should always be a certain amount of airflow (measured in cubic feet per minute) in your heat pump to maintain proper efficiency levels. If the airflow is less than 350 cfm per ton, it could increase your energy costs. You should make sure your HVAC contractor checks the airflow whenever your heat pump is inspected. Always keep the coils clean. Sometimes the ducts are not the right size, or the fan speed needs to be increased, but often cleaning the coils will help airflow, which is why it is important to clean and maintain the components of your heat pump. A certified technician will know what methods are best, so if you suspect an airflow problem with your heat pump, call a professional heating technician.

Air Leaks in the Duct System

Inefficient or poorly-designed duct systems may not distribute air properly throughout your home because of potential air leaks. There should always be a balance between the intake and return air in a forced air system, which helps maintain a neutral pressure within the house and increase efficiency. Some contractors argue over how tightly a house should be sealed for this reason, but if your heat pump is losing heat through leaks in the air ducts, this will greatly affect its efficiency.

Improper Refrigerant

Refrigerant leaks are another common cause of low performance levels in heat pumps. Most heat pumps already have refrigerant when they leave the factory and shouldn’t have any issues. Heat pumps that are charged with refrigerant when they are installed can sometimes have the wrong amount of refrigerant. Either too much or too little refrigerant will lower the heat pump’s efficiency and performance levels. Always check the recommended refrigerant amount or ask an HVAC technician before you add refrigerant yourself.

If the heat pump in your Washington DC home isn’t working properly, it is also affecting your heating bills. Call Polar Bear today to set up an appointment.

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Heat Pump Maintenance Tips from Washington DC: What Happens When You Neglect to Maintain Your Heat Pump System

Monday, August 27th, 2012

Just like any HVAC system, the heat pump in your Washington DC home needs routine maintenance and yearly check-ups to operate as efficiently and safely as possible. You also don’t want your heat pump to wear down to the point of a major malfunction or breakdown, which can be costly to repair or may require a complete system replacement.

Here are some things that could go wrong and cost you a lot more in the end if you don’t keep up with the regular maintenance of your Washington DC heat pump.

Damage to the Compressor

The compressor in a split-system heat pump works whether you are heating or cooling your home. In the winter, the compressor reverses the flow of the refrigerant to defrost the outdoor coils, and in the summer it supplies the refrigerant to cool the home, as well as cooling the outdoor coils. Proper airflow is vital to keeping the compressor running smoothly. Filters that are not changed regularly, dirty coils, and dirty fans can all restrict airflow, which will damage the compressor. Debris around the outside components should also be cleared to allow proper airflow.

Decreased Efficiency

When dirty or broken components restrict the airflow, this damages the compressor and decreases the heat pump’s efficiency levels.  Not only is it important to clean your heat pump regularly, but you should also have it checked by a certified heating technician once a year. This will also prevent safety hazards and other hidden issues with the heat pump.

Improper Refrigerant Levels

Most heat pumps are charged with refrigerant at the factory; however, if models that are charged when they are installed are not given the right amount of refrigerant this can also affect performance levels. Refrigerant leaks and other common problems can be prevented by scheduling an annual maintenance visit with one of our qualified technicians.

Don’t wait until the heat pump in your home stops working, call Polar Bear Air Conditioning to schedule your yearly check-up today!

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Reasons Your Washington DC Heat Pump Can’t Maintain the Right Temperature

Monday, March 26th, 2012

When you set your thermostat for a certain temperature, you expect that your Washington DC heat pump will either heat or cool it to that temperature, right? When you want 72 degrees, you don’t expect to have the temperature stay stuck at 70 degrees while your heat pump struggles futilely.

Sometimes heat pumps have trouble maintaining the right temperature, especially in heating mode. It’s not uncommon, and it has a number of potential causes. Run through this checklist to see if it is something you can fix yourself:

  • The outdoor unit is iced up. Running a defrost cycle can usually fix this.
  • The outdoor unit is not running at all. Sometimes this is simple enough to fix on your own. Read the manufacturer’s instructions to troubleshoot the problem.
  • Too much cold air is getting in the house for the heat pump to keep up. Make sure your doors and windows are closed to keep that valuable heat inside.
  • Your vents are closed. It may seem obvious, but problems like this can sometimes be attributed to user error. Make sure your vents are open to allow heat in.

This is by no means an all-inclusive list, and it covers just those causes that you could potentially fix yourself. There are many other possible culprits out there that could be more sinister and require Washington DC heating and air conditioning professional to be properly repaired.

Some of these include:

  • The compressor is not running.
  • A compressor valve or reversing valve is faulty.
  • The thermostat is malfunctioning or needs to be recalibrated.
  • The refrigerant level is low or there is a problem with the flow of the refrigerant.
  • The heat pump needs routine maintenance.

If your heat pump is not working properly for several days, especially after you have tried some of the DIY solutions above, call Polar Bear Air Conditioning right away. Your heat pump may need repairs before a bigger problem develops.

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