heat pumps Category

The Importance of a Balanced System

If your heat pump freezes over, it’s telling you something important. While light frosting may come and go on an outdoor coil in winter, thick ice formation on an indoor or outdoor heat pump coil is never normal in any season. Usually, it’s a symptom of imbalance somewhere in the system. Heat pump energy efficiency and performance are severely diminished by coil icing. In extreme cases, the unit may shut down entirely. Here are typical reasons a heat pump freezes over, and what you can do about it.

Insufficient Airflow

A heat pump unit Source: Shutterstock

A heat pump unit
Source: Shutterstock

The temperature of a heat pump indoor coil in cooling mode normally remains above 40

degrees Fahrenheit. If system airflow drops below specifications, however, heat transfer declines and coil refrigerant temperature plunges. Condensation on the coil freezes, initiating the cycle of ice accumulation. Common reasons for low airflow include:

  • Dirty air filter. A clogged filter reduces air volume through the coil, potentially causing icing. Changing the air filter is a simple DIY task—a qualified HVAC service tech can show you how if you don’t know—and should ideally be performed monthly.
  • Closed or obstructed vents. Balanced system airflow depends on open supply and return vents in individual rooms. If one or more vents are manually shut or blocked by furniture, drapes or other obstructions, airflow through the coil may be insufficient to prevent icing. Keep all vents clear and don’t close vents in unoccupied rooms.

Low Refrigerant

Proper refrigerant charge is a critical balance. As refrigerant pressure declines below specifications, refrigerant temperature drops, too. Coil icing soon follows. Low refrigerant charge is usually caused by leakage. A qualified HVAC service technician has the equipment and expertise to pinpoint and repair refrigerant leaks, then restore the refrigerant charge to manufacturer’s specifications.

Defective Defroster

If light winter frosting on an outdoor coil accumulates into a layer of thick ice, the heat pump’s automatic defroster may have failed. Professional troubleshooting is required to isolate the problem, replace defective components and verify proper repair.

For qualified service if your heat pump freezes over, in the greater Cincinnati area, contact Apollo Home Heating, Cooling and Plumbing.

Advanced Features Give Heat Pumps Some Major Advantages

heat pumpsWhen it’s time to replace the HVAC equipment in your home, it pays to look at the advances made in heat pump technology. The features available on today’s heat pumps offer greater comfort, enhanced energy efficiency and longer equipment life. (more…)

How Heat Pumps and Furnaces Compare When It Comes to Your Home’s HVAC Needs

heat pumps and furnacesIf heating performance was dismal last year, or you’re considering the costs of possible furnace or heat pump replacement parts and labor, you may also be considering a new heating system. It helps to have the latest information when comparing heat pumps and furnaces for home heating, so keep reading. (more…)

Heating Systems: Choose Carefully for Your New Home or Renovations

heating systemsChoosing heating systems for a new or existing home is always easier when you know more about the best kinds for our climate, which include gas-powered systems and heat pumps that rely on electricity to move three times and more of heat energy into your home per unit of energy they use.

Ductless Mini Split Installation: Not for Amateurs, but You Can Do Some Pre-Installation Work Yourself

ductless mini splitMany homeowners love the idea of saving a buck with do-it-yourself projects. In many cases, the results are just as good as a professional contractor’s work. When it comes to installing a ductless mini split, it’s possible to get the project started on your own, but it’s important to have a trained HVAC technician do the “heavy lifting.”

Ductless mini splits are essentially heat pumps that warm or cool your home by quietly blowing the conditioned or heated air directly into a room. Mini splits are the perfect solution for retrofitting a historic home without the cost and hassle of installing intrusive ductwork. In fact, many new homes are being built with ductless technology, thanks to the energy efficiency, convenience and savings associated with it.

What Does Installing a Ductless Mini Split Entail?

Fully installing a mini split system requires specific tools and knowledge that are nearly impossible for a layperson to acquire. In addition, in most areas, one must be certified to work with the gas, refrigerant and electrical connections needed to complete installation.

It is possible, though, to do some pre-installation work on your own before your trusted contractor finishes the job. Homeowners with some construction experience and basic tools should be able to:

  • Drill the three-inch hole in the wall where the unit will be placed
  • Run the copper tubing and connections outside
  • Hang or install the indoor air handling unit
  • Unpack the compressor from the box
  • Prepare a concrete pad or other flat surface
  • Place the outdoor compressor unit on the flat surface

To ensure proper installation, leave at least the following jobs for a professional contractor:

  • Setting gauges
  • Completing the couplings
  • Vacuuming the lines
  • Testing for leaks in the tubing
  • Releasing the refrigerant

To learn more about ductless mini splits, how they’re installed and how they can fulfill your home comfort needs, please contact Apollo Home Heating, Cooling and Plumbing. Our team of HVAC pros has been serving the greater Cincinnati area for over 100 years.

Is Your Heat Pump Icing Up? Here’s What to Do

heat pump icing upThe greater Cincinnati area is in the middle of a harsh winter, showing no signs of letting up. For homeowners with heat pumps, a major concern can be of the heat pump icing up. While a certain amount of ice or frost on your coil is normal, it can spell disaster when the entire unit ices over. (more…)

Knowing Your Home’s Heat Pump Defrost Cycle

heat pump defrost cycleIn basic terms, your home’s heat pump pulls heat from the environment and moves it into your home. The heat pump is used not only to heat your home, but can also be used to cool it. (more…)

Heat Pump Pros and Cons to Help With the Upgrade Decision

heat pumps, Cincinnati, OhioHaving a heat pump is a great way to bring comfort to your home year-round. (more…)

Keep Your Heat Pump A/C On Top of the Cincinnati Heat With Regular Maintenance

heat pump a/c-energy efficiency, Cincinnati, OhioYour heat pump A/C works hard all summer keeping you comfortably cool, and staying on top of its maintenance will help it run better and use less electricity. (more…)

Energy Tax Credits Will Help Remedy an Ailing A/C

energy tax credits, Cincinnati, OhioIf you’ve been limping through summer with an inefficient air conditioner, this year might be a good time to replace it. The federal government has energy tax credits available through the end of 2013 for homeowners who replace their systems with a high efficiency air conditioner or heat pump. (more…)