Tips for Maintaining the Heat Pump in Your Home

February 16, 2016

The heating and cooling systems are responsible for using nearly half of the energy in the average home. If you are looking for practical ways tocurb energy expenses, maintaining your heat pump for optimal performance is a good place to start.

Indoor Maintenance
Split air-source heat pumps (often called "central air") are the most common type. However, if you have a geothermal system, the principles of heating and cooling are the same. A refrigerant or solution is pumped through an indoor evaporator coil, which absorbs heat from indoor air in cooling mode or it releases heat in heating mode. This process relies on free airflow, which is your focus of indoor maintenance:

  • Filter - It's difficult to believe that a device as simple as your air filter has such a huge impact on HVAC efficiency, heat pump performance, and home comfort. Check the filter each month during peak seasons.
  • Registers and grilles - Clean debris from the registers and grilles every few months. Make sure they are not obstructed by furniture, rugs, or anything else - especially for floor-mounted registers and grilles.
  • Noises - If you hear grinding, squealing or whirring noises from the indoor air handler, contact your HVAC technician for service. Rattling noises indicate loose ducts, which you may wrap with metal tape.

Outdoor Unit
Air-source heat pumps house the compressor and condenser in a large unit that sits next to your home. In warmer weather, you should keep an eye out for weeds, tall grass, clippings, leaves, or anything else that may obstruct airflow. During cooler weather, keep an eye on the unit to ensure ice and snow don't block airflow to the sides. If you have a leaky gutter above the unit, repair the gutter right away so that the outdoor unit doesn't become encased in ice. Homeowner care isn't a replacement for professional preventive maintenance. Heat pumps may be used year-round and should be serviced in the fall and spring.

For more information or to schedule professional heat pump maintenance, contact the experts at Lozier Heating & Cooling today. We've proudly served greater Des Moines residents since 1906. Our goal is to help educate our customers in the greater Des Moines, Iowa area about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems). Credit/Copyright Attribution: "alexwhite/Shutterstock"