Heat pumps are an alternative heating source for your home that, unlike traditional central heating units, pump hot air in from outside your home and vent out colder air, slowly raising the temperature of your home. However, like all appliances, heat pumps can become less efficient over time due to general wear and tear, which can cause them to heat your home poorly and raise your energy bills. Thankfully, there are a number of easy tasks which you can complete to ensure that your heat pump is operating at peak performance.
Clean the Filters
The easiest, yet probably most important maintenance task for a heat pump that is not performing as it should is to clean out the air filters. These filters keep dust, allergens, and other airborne debris from entering your heating system but, over time, can become clogged. When the air filters to your heat pump are clogged, air cannot circulate properly within the unit, affecting how well it can heat your home and increasing the strain on the unit, making malfunctions and damage more likely. Check the owner's manual to see where the filter is located, and remove it from its casing to either clean or replace it.
Have the Refrigerant Changed
If the filters are clear, but your heat pump is not transporting heat as well as it should be, the issue may be a low level of refrigerant within the heat pump. Despite the name, refrigerant is used to carry heat from outside your home into the heating unit, and if a leak has developed, your heat pump will quickly become less efficient. Because refrigerant is a hazardous chemical, you should contact a HVAC professional to change the refrigerant and check the lines to see if there are any leaks to ensure that the problem will not simply keep repeating itself.
Clean the Pump
You should take care to ensure that the exterior component of your heat pump is clear of debris and dirt. If the compressor becomes clogged, it will lower the efficiency of the entire unit. A garden hose can be used to wash away and debris on the outside of the unit, while a shop vacuum and a broom are great at removing sticks, twigs, and other material which may have become stuck in the interior of the unit. If necessary, use a soft cloth to wipe down any dirt or dust which may have built up on the fins of the unit, but take care not to bend them out of shape.
For more tips, contact a local HVAC company like Winters Heating Cooling & Indoor Air Quality.