By Diane, Pacific Aire Comfort Advisor,
Unlike conventional central air conditioners and heaters that get off-season downtime, a heat pump works year-round, cooling and heating in a single unit. Heat pump maintenance by an HVAC professional is an all-season thing, too. If you missed getting it done in spring, now's the time.
Heat pump technology is proven and robust. It offers greater efficiency than standard A/C units and longer service life. However, heat pumps need regular maintenance to live up to manufacturer’s performance specs and sustain year-round operation. It also saves money. Further, a neglected heat pump can cost as much as 25 percent more to operate than a well-maintained unit.
Here are some of the issues an HVAC technician will address in an annual heat pump maintenance call:
- Change the primary mesh filter and the plasma indoor air quality filter. The technician can show you how to do it yourself in the future, if you don't know. The primary filter should be changed every other month.
- Check the indoor coil for dirt that can cut efficiency and result in ice accumulation. Mold can also accumulate on dirty, wet indoor coils.
- Clean the drain pan beneath the air handler and inspect for mold or algae that can plug the drain lines. Verify operation of the drain line.
- At the outside unit, cut back any weeds or vegetation to ensure free airflow into the outdoor coil. Clear the cabinet of leaves, grass clippings or other debris. Hose down the outdoor coil to remove dust and other build-up. Straighten any bent coil fins.
- Check the operation of the outdoor fan, including belt wear and tension.
- Clean and tighten all electrical connections in the outdoor cabinet and apply a weatherproofing coating.
- Measure the refrigerant charge at the outdoor access ports. Add additional refrigerant, if required. Perform leak detection procedure if refrigerant charge is excessively low.
- Verify the proper operation of the thermostat and compare to actual thermometer readings. Calibrate the thermostat if necessary.
Pacific Aire Heating & Cooling is here to keep Ventura and Santa Barbara County homeowners comfortable in all seasons. Contact us today to schedule a professional heat pump maintenance service call.