Heat Pump Repair Problems: The Check Valves

Wednesday, January 7th, 2015

Although heat pumps work on a simple concept—moving heat from one location and depositing it in another—they are extremely intricate machines that depend on numerous precision components working in harmonious balance. Even a basic schematic of a heat pump shows how many different parts one requires to function. This is why you cannot rely on amateurs for repair work on a heat pump, or attempt to make repairs a “do-it-yourself” adventure. The chances are high that your heat pump will sustain damage from an incorrect repair and end up working worse than before—or not working at all.

Fixing a heat pump is fast and easy when you call for experienced HVAC technicians to take on the job. Cool Air Mechanical offers 24/7 heat pump repair to Lawrenceville, GA and throughout the greater Atlanta area. When you need your heat pump working again, make us your first call.

Is a check valve the problem?

One of the components in a heat pump that will give the unit trouble if it malfunctions is the check valves. Because heat pumps can move refrigerant two different directions through the system (one direction for heating mode, the other for cooling), they need devices in them to help direct the refrigerant flow. Not all heat pumps have check valves, but those that do have two, one each in the outdoor and indoor units. The purpose of these valves is to route refrigerant around metering devices that are not in use. This helps the system maintain proper refrigerant pressure no matter which mode it is in. Most modern heat pumps have check valves as part of the metering devices themselves. They are durable so they can withstand a heavy reversal of the refrigerant flow pressure, something that often happens when the heat pump completes its defrost cycle.

Like any mechanical component, a check valve can wear down and break. When this occurs, it can result in a heat pump that will not provide either heating or cooling. Professionals can remove the broken check valve (or check valve and metering device combination) and replace it with a new one. Problems with check valves can also resemble trouble with the reversing valve, so make certain that you have skilled technician on the job so the right repair gets done.

Never hesitate when you think your heat pump is encountering trouble. You can reach the Lawrenceville, GA heat pump repair experts at Cool Air Mechanical any time of the day or night, and they will get your comfort system back into shape. Give us a call today to schedule an appointment.

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Common Heat Pump Problems in Atlanta

Monday, February 4th, 2013

When you schedule a professional heat pump installation and routine maintenance service  in Atlanta, you are taking the steps necessary to ensure the efficient, effective operation of that system. Even with a great heat pump model and regular maintenance service, though, you have to expect to run into a problem or two here and there. Heat pumps, like any other mechanical system, experience some common problems. Not all of them are terribly serious, but any time your heat pump seems to be experiencing issues you should call your local service technician. If you live in Atlanta, just call the heat pump experts at Cool Air Mechanical.

One of the more obvious problems that you may experience with your heat pump is a lack of heat in your home. There are many different causes of this issue. Before you assume there is a serious problem take a quick look around at the registers and grilles of your ductwork system. There is a possibility that these were blocked off by shifting furniture or other items. This may account for the ineffectiveness of your heat pump.

If your registers are free of obstruction but your heat pump is not performing effectively you may have a faulty thermostat. If your thermostat is not able to accurately read temperatures and relay that information to your heat pump,then you cannot expect the system to respond properly.

It is also possible that there is a problem with your outdoor unit. Have a look at the unit to see if it is covered with debris, visibly damaged or iced over. Never attempt to service the compressor or condenser of your heat pump yourself. Most heat pumps have a defrost cycle to deal with icing on the coils, but a serious icing problem or other issues can compromise the performance of the system.

Regardless of what issues your heat pump is experiencing, contact Cool Air Mechanical for the professional maintenance and repair services you need. Our expert technicians can have the heat pump in your Atlanta home working again in no time. Call us as soon as you notice a heat pump problem.

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Atlanta Heat Pump Repair: Reasons Your Heat Pump Can’t Maintain the Right Temperature

Wednesday, March 14th, 2012

When you set your thermostat for a certain temperature, you expect that your Atlanta heat pump will either heat or cool it to that temperature, right? When you want 72 degrees, you don’t expect to have the temperature stay stuck at 70 degrees while your heat pump struggles futilely.

Sometimes heat pumps have trouble maintaining the right temperature, especially in heating mode. It’s not uncommon, and it has a number of potential causes. Run through this checklist to see if it is something you can fix yourself:

  • The outdoor unit is iced up. Running a defrost cycle can usually fix this.
  • The outdoor unit is not running at all. Sometimes this is simple enough to fix on your own. Read the manufacturer’s instructions to troubleshoot the problem.
  • Too much cold air is getting in the house for the heat pump to keep up. Make sure your doors and windows are closed to keep that valuable heat inside.
  • Your vents are closed. It may seem obviou, but problems like this can sometimes be attributed to user error. Make sure your vents are open to allow heat in.

This is by no means an all-inclusive list, and it covers just those causes that you could potentially fix yourself. There are many other possible culprits out there that could be more sinister and require professional service to be properly repaired.

Some of these include:

  • The compressor is not running.
  • A compressor valve or reversing valve is faulty.
  • The thermostat is malfunctioning or needs to be recalibrated.
  • The refrigerant level is low or there is a problem with the flow of the refrigerant.
  • The heat pump needs routine maintenance.

If your heat pump is not working properly for several days, especially after you have tried some of the DIY solutions above, call Cool Air Mechanical right away. Your heat pump may need repairs before a bigger problem develops.

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Buford Heat Pump Repair Question: Why Won’t My Heat Pump Start?

Friday, February 10th, 2012

If you are having trouble with your Buford home’s heat pump, you may be surprised to learn that it is probably not the heat pump that is to blame, especially if the trouble is that it simply won’t start up. That seems counterintuitive, but it’s true: the heat pump can be in perfect working order but still not turn on.

The good news, then, is that your heat pump is fine and you won’t have to pay an arm and a leg to fix or replace it. Still though, these types of problems can very frustrating to diagnose and correct. Here are four common culprits when a heat pump won’t start:

  1. No power to the heat pump. Check your breaker box to see if the circuit breaker was tripped. If so, reset it and see if that fixes the problem. Another possibility is that your heat pump is wired to a wall switch, or that there is a switch on the unit itself. Make sure the switch is turned on.
  2. Make sure the thermostat is set to the proper mode, such as “heat” mode if you desire more heat. It seems overly simple, but sometimes the trouble is as simple as that.
  3. A recently replaced thermostat. If you recently upgraded or replaced the thermostat in your home, it’s possible that something went wrong that is preventing your heat pump from starting. It may be the wrong kind of thermostat – heat pumps require a specific type – or it may have been improperly wired.
  4. Finally, the heat pump may have its own circuit breaker on the air handler cabinet. This is often the case with heat pumps that have supplemental electric elements. If that breaker is tripped, that could cause the problems you are experiencing.

If you exhaust these problems and the problem persists or recurs – for example, if the circuit breaker trips again – call Cool Air Mechanical to work on your heat pump. There may be something larger at work that is causing problems in the electrical system that controls your Buford home’s heat pump, and that requires some expertise to properly address.

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EastPoint Heating Tip: What to Do About an Ice and Snow Covered Heat Pump

Monday, January 2nd, 2012

Sometimes heat pumps in EastPoint ice over in the winter time. It can be due to freezing temperatures and icing outside or it could be due to constant running of the heat pump or excess moisture on the coils. However, while a bit of ice on the heat pump is relatively normal, the entire unit should never be covered in ice – such a thing is not only hard on the machinery; it can result in no heat for your home.

How to Handle Ice and Snow on the Heat Pump

Should your heat pump become covered in ice or snow in the winter time, there are a few things you can do and some things you should not do. First, check to make sure the problem isn’t related to a broken defrost cycle timer. The heat pump should go into a defrost cycle every 30-90 minutes to keep excess ice from building up. If this doesn’t happen, it should be inspected for a thermostat or sensor problem.

To actually remove the ice from the unit, never use a sharp object to pick the ice clear. You can easily damage the coils or another part of the unit and leave it permanently broken. The best way to remove ice from your heat pump is to rinse it off with a hose – even cold water will remove ice. Just be sure the defrost cycle is ready to come back on so the water used to rinse away the ice doesn’t freeze.

Remember to check your emergency heating source and make sure it is switched on while this is happening. Your heat pump likely won’t work properly while iced over and if it is left in the on position, excess stress on the device will cause damage.

To avoid this kind of damage, turn off the heat pump and turn on your emergency heating source, then clear away the ice and check the defrost timer. If everything works properly, turn the heat pump back on, but if you find any problems, call a EastPoint professional to do a more thorough inspection of the device before you use it again.

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