4 Wintertime Heat Pump Problems in Charleston, SC

Keeping you cool all summer and warm all winter, a heat pump allow you to enjoy a comfortable indoor environment year-round. Occasionally, however, things can go wrong. Here are four of the most common problems these modern feats of engineering can develop during the cold-weather season in Charleston, SC.

Understanding How Heat Pumps Work

Before tackling issues with your system, it’s helpful to know just how the apparatus operates. Air-to-air pumps rely on refrigerant to extract heat from the air and move it outdoors during the summer and indoors in winter. A substance with a low boiling point, liquid refrigerant easily evaporates when exposed to a rapid drop in pressure, absorbing heat from the surrounding air during the process.

Some models feature components that make them operate more effectively in heating mode. As a certified Trane Comfort Specialist, AC Heating and Air Conditioning Services offers an array of systems equipped with inverter compressors that augment the extracted heat, keeping you warm indoors even in the iciest cold-weather conditions.

Problem #1: Blowing Cool Air

The last thing you want on an icy winter evening is cold air blowing through the vents of your HVAC system. Fortunately, the solution is often simple. Inspect the outdoor unit, which houses the compressor and condenser, to ensure that leaves and other debris aren’t blocking the grid of metal fins. Trim foliage back at least 2 feet to allow adequate airflow around the components.

Next, check the air filter. A clogged filter blocks airflow, limiting the amount of heat the system generates. It also forces your system to run overtime to maintain comfortable temperatures. Replacing your filter whenever it looks dirty helps prevent heat pump repairs. It can also save you money by lowering the system’s energy consumption by up to 15%.

Problem #2: Making Strange Noises

The quiet hum of the well-functioning HVAC system is a welcoming sound on a cold winter’s day. Loud thumps, bangs or banshee-like screeching noises are another thing altogether. Whether caused by a broken belt, loose bearing or a wobbly motor mount, unusual noises need to be checked out as soon as possible by a qualified HVAC technician.

Note that a clicking noise is perfectly normal when your system turns on or off. It’s the sound the equipment makes when relaying electrical signals. Repeated clicking, on the other hand, indicates there’s a problem with one of the system’s electrical components.

Problem #3: Stays Constantly Running

Don’t be surprised if your air-to-air pump runs for longer cycles when the weather turns icy. They’re designed to deliver a steady flow of warm air when outdoor temperatures tumble. Nevertheless, if the system isn’t generating enough heat to keep you comfortable, it’s time to schedule heat pump repairs.

Whether it’s a faulty thermostat or leaky ductwork, sometimes all it takes is a quick fix to address the problem. Issues like refrigerant leaks, undersized systems or damaged coils might take longer to resolve.

Problem #4: Unit Won’t Turn On

If your air-to-air heat pump doesn’t automatically switch on in cold weather, don’t panic. The solution might be as simple as flipping a tripped breaker on your home’s electrical panel. A broken capacitor could also be the problem. The starter capacitor is the component that transmits the electrical charge needed to start the motors. A knowledgeable service technician can replace the capacitor for you.

Peace of mind — it’s the most valuable benefit we offer at AC Heating and Air Conditioning Services. We want you to know that whatever goes wrong with your heat pump, you can count on our team of skilled professionals to set things right. Since 1970, we’ve been proud to provide top-quality heating repair services in Charleston, SC, and the surrounding communities. To schedule service, call AC Heating and Air Conditioning Services today.

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