Does your heat pump not heat or cool properly? Does it cycle on and off too frequently or freezes up?  Is your unit making rattling, squeaking, or grinding noises?

Before you start troubleshooting your heat pump, check your filters.  Unless you are running your unit infrequently, you should change your filters once a month to ensure maximum efficiency and proper functioning.  Take a look at your thermostat as well and make sure it’s turned on and working properly.

Also make sure that a professional technician has performed routine maintenance on your HVAC system within the past year.  Regular maintenance should be done in the Spring and in the Fall.  Heat Pump maintenance includes both checking the indoor and the outdoor unit.

When looking at the indoor unit, it involves:

  • checking all electrical connections to make sure they are tight,
  • checking that the blower wheel is clean.  For certain older models, the motor bearings need to also be oiled.
  • Check that there is no excessive play in the bearings
  • Cleaning and replacing the air filter

When looking at the outdoor unit, it involves:

  • Wash the outside unit and ensure that it is clear of any debris such as grass clippings, dirts, leaves, etc.  Be careful with this unit.  You do not want to mash the fins of the coil be being to rough or by using a pressure washer.
  • Also checking and making sure that all wiring connections are tight and repairing any connections that get hot.
  • Looking for signs of pitting on the contactor  and repair
  • Check the readings of the capacitors are within 6% of the listed ratings.

Because heat pumps contain hazardous material, unless you are mechanically inclined and familiar with working on HVAC systems, it’s generally advisable to let a professional HVAC technician perform the maintenance on all your units.

Once you are satisfied that your filters are clean and dirt is not reducing the airflow, that proper maintenance was performed in the last few months, that your unit is “on”, and that your thermostat is working properly, you might want to try to locate the source of the problem before calling for a HVAC professional.

If your system is making a suspicious noise, is the noise coming from the air ducts or within the Heat Pump unit itself?  If the issue seems to be low airflow, can you determine wither or not you have an airflow problem in just one air register or are all registers having the same problem?

Some problems will require the help of an HVAC specialist such as a grinding noise that indicates that the bearings on the motor of your unit are worn out for instance.  Others such as rattles, might be fixed by simply tightening loose parts or by taking a look at the fan belt inside the unit and replacing it or adjusting it, if what you are hearing is a squeak inside the heat pump.

If you are unsure about what the problem really is or you determine that fixing the problem will require more specific knowledge than you possess, call a Heat Pump specialist.  At Cool Change Heating and Air, we’ll be happy to come to your Raleigh home right away and take a look. And any information you have gathered in the troubleshooting process will help us resolve your problem faster.