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Heat Pump Blowing Warm? Learn How to Troubleshoot

Heat Pump Blowing Warm? Learn How to TroubleshootIf your heat pump isn’t cooling your house like it used to, there are a few things that could be going on. You could have a clogged filter, an iced up compressor, a blown fuse or even low refrigerant. The good news is that most of these problems are easy to fix.

Before you head out to check on your condenser coils, do yourself a favor and check the thermostat. You’d be surprised how many times this is the problem. Make sure that it is turned to cooling mode and that it is set to automatic (not fan on). If there is no air coming through your vents, turn on fan on mode to make sure your blower is working. If the fan is working but you are still getting warm air, skip the next step.

If your fan isn’t working, you may have blown a fuse or have an interrupted power supply. If the breaker keeps getting tripped you may have a problem in the electrical system. This is a job for the professionals.

Check your air filter. A dirty air filter can allow dirt and debris to accumulate on your condenser coils. Change your filter and use a hose to wash the outdoor compressor unit. Don’t use a power washer – the high pressure water could damage vital components in your unit.

If you have an energy efficiency sensor on your unit (most newer units do), you may have frozen coils. If this is the case, turn your heat pump to fan only mode for about an hour to try to defrost the unit. This should get your unit blowing cold air again. If this problem returns, call an HVAC specialist to relocate the temperature sensor to an area closer to the outtake on the coils.

Low refrigerant levels are another possible cause for poor heat pump cooling. If you think you are low on refrigerant, a professional must be called to top off your unit. For more service on your San Marcos or San Diego area home heat pump, contact Sherlock Heating and Air Conditioning today.

Our goal is to help educate our customers in the greater San Diego and San Marcos, California area about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems).

Credit/Copyright Attribution: “Nenov Brothers Images/Shutterstock”

A/C Acting Up? Troubleshooting Tips to Try First

A/C Acting Up? Troubleshooting Tips to Try FirstHomeowners will be flipping the “on” switch on their thermostats as the weather warms up. Usually things go as anticipated. But occasionally things just don’t go as expected. In many cases, a bit of A/C troubleshooting solves the problem but other times the problem warrants a visit from an HVAC service company. Read on for common problems and possible fixes.

  • The unit won’t turn on. The first thing to check is the circuit breakers at both the breaker box and at the outside unit. Turn it back on if it’s tripped. The next thing to check is the thermostat. Put in fresh batteries. It’s possible that it needs thermostat calibration. If a replacement is in order, an Energy Star rated thermostat is a good idea. If the unit has a condensate pump, be sure it’s not full.
  • If the larger copper line on the outdoor unit isn’t cold but the fan is running, the refrigerant is probably low. Call a service person to check for leaks and add refrigerant.
  • If there is some cooling but just not enough, check the temperature differential at two spots, where the air enters and where it exits the air handler. If it’s not between fifteen and twenty degrees, this is another indication of a refrigerant issue. If it’s much higher, try cleaning the blower wheel and evaporator coil. Also change the filter.
  • If the outside unit is making a loud buzzing, remove the panel from the outside unit and see if it is coming from the contactor (usually a square device with many wires coming out the top and bottom). Before replacing it, carefully label all wires.
  • Finally, if a brand new unit is the best way to go, select a high efficiency unit.

In many cases a problem can be fixed by the homeowner, saving money. The building code mandates that many tasks must be handled by a licensed professional. For more information on A/C troubleshooting, contact us.

Our goal is to help educate our customers in the greater San Diego and San Marcos, California area about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems).

Credit/Copyright Attribution: “CGinspiration/Shutterstock”