You don’t want to get caught in the cold. That’s why it’s important to understand the type of heat pump system you have and know what could go wrong and your options to prevent or fix any issues that could happen.
Should You Repair or Replace Your Heat Pump?
Heat Pump Repairs
Often times a repair visit will fix most issue with your current heat pump system. Age will play the biggest role in determining whether you need to repair or replace your heat pump system. Generally, air source heat pumps can last around 15 years, while geothermal heating systems can last up to 25 years or more. A simple repair visit could potentially buy you a few more years if your system is less than 10 years old.
Also take into consideration the service history of your system. If you have kept up with maintenance and repairs and your heat pump system has been reliable and problem free, a repair visit by MGM Mechanical can address your current issue and get your system back to proper operation.
Heat Pump Installation
If your heat pump system is over 10-15 years old, repairs may continue to increase in both price and frequency. Unfortunately no HVAC system lasts for ever, so installing a new heat pump as a replacement is an excellent preventative measure and a good investment. It makes the most sense to consider heating system replacement when your repairs costs exceed more than 40% of the price for installing a new heat pump.
Upgrading your aging heating system also can provide you with long-term savings when you choose a high-efficiency ENERGY STAR system. These systems can significantly reduce your heating and cooling costs. The combination of ENERGY STAR savings and the savings you’ll make on maintenance and repairs of a new system, can offset a good portion of the initial installation cost.
Benefits of Regular Maintenance and Repair for Heat Pumps
If you’re concerned that your heating system might be aging or in need of repair, MGM Mechanical provides a worry-free, cost-effective comprehensive maintenance plan that goes over every aspect of your heat pump system.
Our certified HVAC professionals will:
- Check electrical start components
- Clean indoor and outdoor coils
- Clean condensate pans and drains
- Check electric heaters
- Check operations in heating and cooling
- Check temperature splits of indoor units
- Inspect motors, fan blades
- Inspect and or replace filters
General Heat Pump Maintenance Tips
Regardless of the type of heating system you use to heat your home, your heat pump system will require regular maintenance to keep your home comfortable and protect against costly repairs.
When you maintain your system well, you can also maximize energy savings, and reduce wear and tear on components, saving you time and money in the long run.
Some maintenance do’s and don’ts include:
- Do: Regularly cleaning filters and replacing them at least as often as recommended by the manufacturer
- Do: Inspect for loose electrical connections and tighten them if necessary (use caution)
- Don’t: Block airflow by placing furniture or other objects near the indoor unit
- Do: Get your heat pump checked annually by an HVAC professional
Common Heat Pump Problems
Heat pump not turning on (does not run)
- Make sure your heat pump has power. If the power switch is, but your pump is not working, you may have an issue with your thermostat setting.
- Make sure that you have your thermostat set to the correct mode and temperature.
- If you recently replaced your thermostat, make sure it works with your system and is wired properly.
- Check for tripped circuit breakers or blown fuses in your homes breaker panel box. If the breaker trips again, you may have a short in your electrical system. Call a trained professional to assess the issue.
Heat pump not heating
- Check your thermostat settings. The thermostat may have an issue sending the signal to the outdoor unit.
- Check the outdoor unit for debris. This will restrict airflow and can prevent the system from providing enough heat.
- Your system may have a damaged reversing valve, defrost timer, or low refrigerant charge. Have a trained HVAC professional help you with identifying and replacing issues.
Heat pump makes noises
- Don’t neglect unusual noises – these may be signs that can help you prevent your system from completely failing. If you hear humming noises from your heat pump, some of the hardware may have loosened. Tighten the fasteners if necessary.
- If you hear squealing or grinding noises, your system may have a serious issue such as a bad compressor or worn bearings in the motor. Turn off the unit to avoid additional damage and get help from a trained HVAC professional.
If your home’s electric heating system still isn’t working, don’t wait; call MGM Mechanical. We’ll have one of our friendly heating specialists diagnose the problem and get your heater back up and running the first time.
How your electric heating system works
Heat pumps allow you to both heat and cool your home by taking advantage of natural temperature differenced and transferring heat into or out of your home. You will find this concept of heat-exchange and moving heat energy from place to place in any heating and cooling system.
The two main types of heat pumps are geothermal heat pumps (or ground source) and air source heat pumps. Ground source heat pumps moves heat energy to and from the ground while air source transfers heat from the air.
Airsource Heat Pumps
Airsource heat pumps take heat energy from the outside air and use that energy to heat your home in the winter and reverses that process in the summer, pushing warm air in your home into the air outside through the external condenser.
Traditional electric heat pumps use surrounding air to draw and deposit heat energy. Depending on the installation and format of the system, you may find different names including ducted or ductless and single or multi zone.
- Ductless: This application only requires a small hole drilled through the wall to connect indoor and outdoor components of the system.
- Ducted: This option is best used in spaces that already have sufficient duct work
- Multi-zone: Two or more indoor heads connect to a single condenser placed outdoors.
- Single-zone: Each room has its own indoor head and outdoor condenser
Geothermal Heat Pumps
Much like air-to-air heat pump systems, geothermal systems exchange heat energy into and out of your home through the ground beneath your feet.
Since ground temperature fluctuates significantly less than the air, geothermal systems can heat or cool your home more efficiently.