DIY Tips From the Warner Service Blog

It’s Getting Hot in Here: How to Take Care of Your Heat Pump

Posted by Warner Service on Nov 17, 2015 3:49:00 PM

Heat pump units are vital for the cold months ahead. When Maryland gets hit with brutal ice, snow and wind, these handy appliances keep your home warm and cozy for the holidays. It’s important to do maintenance on your heat pump before the harsh weather hits to ensure its longevity and prevent any damage.

Many homeowners may not realize that their home’s heat pump unit has two different parts: one inside and one outside. The two components require similar maintenance techniques (as detailed below) to keep the entire unit running great, but homeowners should perform these checks separately. Follow Warner Service’s step-by-step guide on how to properly take care of your heat pump unit:

Indoor:

  1. Turn off your indoor unit by unplugging it or using the on/off switch.
  2. Check the meter to see that the unit is de-energized. If the unit shows an abnormal reading, this could mean part of the unit is failing.
  3. Check the electrical connections, belts and oil motors to ensure that everything is tight. This will help prevent future fire hazards.
  4. If you see any components are burned or torn, repair and/or replace the wiring. If the components look good, you can apply a non-conductive coating for preventative care.
  5. Check the blower to see if the wheel is free of dirt and debris.
  6. If the wheel is dirty, gently clean it with an old rag or paper towels and lukewarm water. If the wheel is clean, move onto step 7.
  7. Replace the air filter. This should be done about every 6 weeks, even if you are not having problems.

Outdoor:

  1. Turn off your outdoor unit by unplugging it or using the on/off switch.
  2. Check the meter to see that the unit is de-energized. If the reading is off, part of the unit may be failing.
  3. Check the electrical connections, belts and oil motors to ensure that they’re tight.
  4. If you see any components are hot, burned or torn, repair and/or replace the wiring. If the components look good, you can apply another non-conductive coating.
  5. Check the contactor to see if the contacts are deteriorating (also known as pitting). If they are, electricity cannot flow and this will cause a leak, so replace the contacts immediately.
  6. Make sure the components are put back properly.
  7. Wash the debris out of the outdoor unit with a garden hose on a medium setting. Do not use a pressure washer as this could damage the blower’s fins.
  8. Check the indoor thermostat to make sure that it is level. If you have a programmable thermostat, make sure it’s accurate.
  9. Turn on the indoor and outdoor unit to observe a regular heating cycle.

Taking care of your heat pump regularly should give it a lifespan of 12 to 15 years. This can save you lots of money in repairs and replacements. And who doesn’t want to save a little dough? It can also help regulate and circulate cleaner air throughout your home during allergy season. This means less sneezing, coughing, watery eyes and runny noses from your family.

If you choose to have a professional technician perform a maintenance check on your heat pump, ask them to check all of the above components for efficiency. The expert should also look at both units’ refrigerant levels for possible leaks, your home’s ductwork for airtight seals and working safety controls. Contact Warner Service today for a thorough inspection.

Topics: HVAC, Maintenance