A heat pump is a heat distribution device that transports heat from one area to another. It’s a popular method for heating homes in areas with moderate winter climates. Unlike a traditional furnace, a heat pump does not create heat. Instead, it simply moves heat around to where you want it.
However, like traditional furnaces, heat pumps are susceptible to certain problems over time. This is especially true if you forget to schedule regular maintenance services. Heat pump cycling —a phenomenon where the heat pump starts and stops constantly — is a common problem many systems encounter. Here's what causes cycling, what the signs of this problem are, and how to get it resolved.
What are some common signs of heat pump cycling?
It is usually pretty easy to tell if your heat pump is cycling too frequently. If your heat pump running constantly has become a problem, or if you notice the pump shuts on and off all the time, you are experiencing cycling issues. Other common signs of short cycling include:
- Hot or cold spots in the home
- Skyrocketing power bills
- Frequent unit breakdowns
Short cycling can be very damaging to your heat pump. If you don’t fix the problem as quickly as possible, your heat pump will probably have a shorter lifespan than expected. The Heblon Heating & Air Conditioning team can inspect your pump to make sure it’s running optimally.
What are some reasons for heat pump cycling?
There can be many underlying reasons for your heat pump running constantly. Here are a few heat pump cycling causes we see frequently:
Improper heat pump size for your home
If your heat pump is too large or small for your home, it will not work efficiently. It’s especially common for units that are too small to have to go into overdrive to keep up with demand. Units that are too large for your home may be more susceptible to short cycling.
Refrigerant leaks are a common culprit behind short cycling. Low refrigerant may also be the issue. In either case, call professionals to check out the problem and make sure it’s properly handled.
Icing over the coils
In areas that are too cold, icing can form over the coils and interfere with the unit’s ability to function. If this happens, the coils should be dethawed to allow the unit to do its job.
A malfunctioning thermostat is a surprisingly common cause of short cycling. If your thermostat is unresponsive or if the thermostat setting and room temperature don’t match, it’s time to have you thermostat inspected and possibly replaced.
Finally, if your heat pump has compressor issues, it will cause serious problems. To check for a bad compressor, put your hand over the compressor fan and feel the air. If It feels lukewarm or cool, the compressor is not working.
It’s important not to try to fix heat pump issues yourself, unless you have experience and know how to do so safely. Heat pumps can be dangerous if handled incorrectly. To be on the safe side, trust the professionals to get the job done quickly, correctly, and safely.
What can you do to fix heat pump issues?
If you're observing heat pump cycling with your system, call our team at Heblon Heating & Air Conditioning. We know how to identify common causes of heat pump running constantly or short cycling. Contact us online to request heat pump service here in Meridian, MS.