Your heat pump works year around, so that means it experiences more wear and tear compared to a standard furnace or air conditioning system. For this reason, it's vital that you know the signs that trouble is brewing. This way, you can schedule a repair before your heat pump breaks down completely. The following issues indicate that it's time for a service call.
Poor air flow
One of the most common heat pump issues is reduced air flow. You'll likely notice that the air seems stagnant or that no warm air is coming from the ducts in winter. The problem can stem from a clogged filter, which just necessitates a replacement. Damage to the ducts can also result in poor airflow. In some cases, the actual pump may be having trouble and require a repair. Start with changing the filter. If that doesn't work, then bring in a technician.
Heat pumps are relatively quiet. Other than a hum when it's running, you shouldn't hear the pump. The most common noises that mean trouble sound like some form of grinding. These occur when the pump motor is having trouble. Turn off the heat pump to prevent more damage and call a heat pump repair tech.
If your thermostat is set to a warm setting but the ducts are blowing out cool air, you have a problem. First, try turning the thermostat all the way up. If the air starts to warm, then you have a thermostat issue. Usually all you have to do is replace it. If this doesn't work, then something is wrong with the heat pump itself. A tech can diagnose and repair the problem.
Sometimes a heat pump gets ice on it, particularly in the summer. This is the same as when an air conditioner ices up. Fortunately, in most cases, simply shutting off the pump and then running it at a slightly higher setting will solve the issue. You may also need to change the filter. If the problem persists, bring in a tech so they can check for a refrigerant leak.
Not cycling properly
Heat pumps have a valve that allows them to cycle between settings, which is how they can be used to both warm and cool a home. If the heat pump won't cycle into the proper setting, then this valve has likely become stuck or broken. A technician will need to replace the valve so the pump can work properly.
For more help, contact a heat pump service company in your area.