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5 Ways to Troubleshoot a Heat Pump

AirPros - How to Troubleshoot a Heat Pump

The Heat Pump plays a vital role in the home’s HVAC equipment by providing the heating and cooling it needs for an efficient and comfortable home atmosphere. 

When the heat pump is not working, the temperatures inside your home will immediately be off, and you will find yourself scrambling, trying to figure out what to do. 

There are things you can do on your own that may help you with diagnosing heat pump problems and troubleshooting them so that the heat pump can produce those optimal temperatures again. 

Has your heat pump suddenly stopped working? You may find the answer to your dilemma by reading this comprehensive heat pump troubleshooting guide written by the finest technicians of Air Pros USA. 

How To Fix a Heat Pump Air Conditioner

  1. Check the Thermostat

  2. Inspect Air Filter

  3. Examine the Outdoor Unit

  4. Verify Indoor Registers and Vents

  5. Assess for Refrigerant Leaks

In this guide, we will break down each of these steps to help you troubleshoot heat pump issues in your home. If neither of these steps helps you fix a heat pump, feel free to contact our team of heat pump experts in your area.  

Is Your Heat Pump Not Working?

Nothing is more inconvenient than when you find the air conditioner heat pump not working. Whether you need the heat or the cooling it produces, you will find yourself desperately out of luck until you can fix a heat pump or find the required help. 

Suppose your air conditioner heat pump is not working. In that case, we recommend you check the thermostat, inspect the air filters, examine the outdoor unit, verify indoor registers and vents, and check for refrigerant leaks. 

1. Check the Thermostat

The thermostat is central to the function of any HVAC system. Thus, it is one of the basic steps to heat pump diagnostics. Make your way over to your thermostat and follow these steps: 

  1. Look at the thermostat to ensure that is on and set to the appropriate temperatures. 
  2. If it isn’t on, attempt to turn it on. 
  3. If turning on the thermostat doesn’t work, you may need to change the batteries: 
    • Lift the panel on the thermostat where the batteries are housed
    • Remove the old batteries
    • Place a fresh set of batteries into the slots
    • Put the panel back on and turn on the thermostat
  4. Make sure that the temperature of your thermostat is set appropriately. The ideal temperature is 78 degrees Fahrenheit, and it is recommended that you never go below or above a 10-degree margin from what the temperatures are outside. 

Consider replacing your heat pump thermostat that is not working or is consistently signaling the heat pump to work inefficiently. 

2. Inspect Air Filters

Another way to fix a heat pump air conditioner is to check the air filters. Air filters are critical in any heating or cooling system because they help keep the air in your home at a high quality. Because they remove dirt and debris from the air before it hits your home, you must take the necessary steps to change them regularly. 

  1. Find the air filters in your home, usually behind a set of vents along a wall or on the floor. 
  2. Remove the vents and take out the filters. 
  3. Upon inspection, you can rinse the filters to remove all the caked-on dust and debris, allowing it to dry before placing it back behind the vents. 
  4. You can also just put in a new air filter, which may save you time on an extra cleaning chore. 
  5. Place the vents back on and turn the heat pump air conditioning unit on. 

If changing your air filters hasn’t helped resolve the issue, there may be something else wrong with the outdoor unit. 

3. Examine the Outdoor Unit

The outdoor unit of the air conditioning system is known as the condenser unit. This outdoor unit may have the answer to your heat pump problems, so you may need to inspect it when nothing else works. 

Because the condenser is located outside, it often becomes the catch-all for dirt, debris, and outdoor items like toys and tools. Take the time to clear away all dirt, debris, and items from the unit. 

Next, you’ll want to take a peek inside the unit for any necessary cleaning, which may restore the heat pump to order. 

  1. Using a Phillips flathead screwdriver, unscrew the screws of the condenser’s panel and set it aside. Be sure to put the screws in a safe location so you don’t lose them. 
  2. Take a look at your condenser coils, evaporator coils, and fins. 
  3. Use a soft coil clearing brush to remove any debris or dust from these components, which will promote a more efficient cooling and heating process. 
  4. If you need to use the hose to wash away debris, ensure the entire unit is off until ALL liquid is dried thoroughly. 
  5. Replace the condenser’s panel and turn the heat pump back on. 

The dirt and grime that often collect on the coils can quickly lead to your heat pump not running properly because it is too heavy for the coils and fins. However, if after the cleaning, you find that you still have a problem with the heat pump not cooling or heating your home, you must call a technician for help. 

4. Verify Indoor Registers and Vents

Sometimes, the issue of your heat pump not running as it should can be solved with one very simple step, which is by unblocking all the registers and vents inside your home. Go through the house and make sure that there are no furniture, plants, or other household items blocking them. 

Take the time to assess the registers and vents for dust bunnies and other debris, which should be wiped away. This step will ensure that your home has good indoor air quality and will resolve the issue of your heat pump not cooling or heating the home. 

5. Assess for Refrigerant Leaks

The last suggestion in our heat pump troubleshooting guide is to check your entire heat pump air conditioning system for refrigerant leaks. Refrigerant fluid is essential as it helps accomplish the “conditioning” of the cooling process. Without it, the AC unit will not be able to heat or cool the absorbed air. 

Walk around the house and take note of all the vents, registers, air handlers, and finally the condenser unit. Make sure there aren’t any puddles of fluid around these components as this is indicative of a refrigerant fluid leak.                                                                                  

If you spot any refrigerant fluid around your heat pump equipment, we recommend that you get in touch with one of the heat pump technicians as soon as possible. They will help clean up the leak, determine its cause, and repair it. 

DO NOT attempt to fix this problem by yourself because refrigerant is highly poisonous. 

Still Need Help Fixing Your Heat Pump?

If after going through our heat pump troubleshooting guide tips you find that your heat pump is still not working, don’t sweat it! 

Check out the list of all Air Pros USA locations to get help from our team of expert Heat Pump Techs in your area. 

Contact Air Pros USA technicians in FL, GA, AL, LA, TX, MS, CO, and WA today for a thorough assessment of your Heat Pump.


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