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Should My Heat Pump’s Outdoor Unit Run during Cold Weather?

A heat pump is both a cold weather and warm weather indoor comfort system. During cool temperatures, a heat pump draws ambient warmth from the outside air using refrigerant and then moves it indoors. During warm temperatures, it removes the heat in the air from the indoors and shifts it outdoors. If a heat pump is well-matched to a home and receives professional installation and regular maintenance, it should keep a house at the right temperature no matter the weather outside.

For excellent installation, repairs, and regular maintenance for a heat pump in Westlake, OH that will provide your family with comfort all through the year, always look to the experts at Westland Heating and Air Conditioning.

HVAC technicians sometimes receive calls from new heat pump owners regarding what seems like a malfunction: the outdoor cabinet running during cold weather. If a homeowner has only used a standard air conditioner before, this may seem like odd behavior from the system. After all, an air conditioner isn’t supposed to run during cold weather, and if the outdoor cabinet starts running, it means there is something wrong.

However, a heat pump’s outdoor unit is supposed to operate during cold weather. Although a heat pump resembles an air conditioner in many ways, it has the important difference of being able to change the direction it circulates refrigerant, which causes the indoor and outdoor coils to swap functions. During cold weather, the heat pump’s compressor (which is housed in the outdoor unit) will still run in order to place the refrigerant under high pressure and high heat. The fans in the outdoor unit must also run in order to draw the outside air across the coils where the refrigerant absorbs its heat through evaporation and then takes it indoors. You should expect to hear the components in the outdoor cabinet working whenever you switch your heat pump over to heating mode: if you don’t, then something is definitely wrong.

Nonetheless, you should stay vigilant when it comes to the sounds your heat pump makes while it operates. Always call for repair technicians when you hear clanging, banging, clicking, or hissing noises from either cabinet. And if the outside unit of your heat pump is running, but you aren’t receiving heat, you should also call for technicians right away to investigate the problem.

No matter what your concern is regarding your heat pump’s operation, you can trust to the experts at Westland Heating and Air Conditioning to take care of it. When it comes to servicing a heat pump in Westlake, OH, we are the people to call.

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