Westland Heating & Air Conditioning Blog: Posts Tagged ‘Heat Pump’

Consider the Benefits of a Heat Pump

Monday, April 25th, 2016

Avon, OH suffers from cold winters and hot summers, and with spring currently in full bloom, now is a good time to considering installing a new heating and air conditioning system in your home. Heat pumps used to be a casual consideration at best: a combined heater and air conditioner that sometimes struggled during the cold fronts in the winter. But recent advances have improved its versatility considerably, and today it has become a smart choice for homeowners looking to improve their HVAC system’s efficiency.

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3 Common Malfunctions in a Heat Pump

Monday, February 15th, 2016

Heat pumps used to be fairly uncommon here in Westlake, OH, since they didn’t work especially well in cold weather. Recent advances have changed all of that, however, and residents are discovering the benefits of a heater and an air conditioning system rolled into one unit. Heat pumps are reliable and dependable, but like any other system, they suffer from occasional malfunctions. A qualified technician can correct the issue quickly and properly, but it helps if you know what some of the more common ones are. Here’s a list of 3 you should look out for.

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Why Won’t My Heat Pump Switch Over?

Monday, December 7th, 2015

We have a fair number of heat pumps in Westlake, OH homes, which combine the function of a heater and an air conditioner into one unit. They work by circulating refrigerant through a series of valves and coils, just like an air conditioner. The only difference is that the cycle can be “reversed,” which vents warm air inside your home and cool air outside. (The opposite of what most air conditioners do.) But what happens if that reversal won’t take place? What if your heat pump won’t switch over and keeps pumping out cool air instead of the warm air you need? You should call in a qualified repair technician the moment you do, but it pays to understand what some of the possible causes might be.

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

Wednesday, March 4th, 2015

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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Is a Heat Pump a Good Replacement for a Furnace?

Wednesday, September 24th, 2014

When it’s finally time to replace your old furnace, you may be curious about some alternative heating options for your home. Heat pumps, like furnaces, rely on ductwork to distribute warm air to the home. However, heat pumps have one key energy-saving difference; unlike furnaces, they don’t actually generate any heat. But will a heat pump be a good investment for your home, or should you stick with a furnace?

The answer, of course, depends on your home and your preferences. Sometimes, a heat pump is the best option for you, even if your neighbors may feel they are better off with a gas furnace. Both systems have their advantages and drawbacks. But if you’re looking into heat pumps as a heating option for the first time, you may be curious about some of their unique features. Let’s have a look:

  • High Efficiency: Heat pumps are very efficient systems because they don’t generate heat like furnaces do; they only move it from place to place. Heat pumps have their own rating system for heating efficiency, the HSPF (Heating Seasonal Performance Factor), and a technician can help you find a heat pump with a high HSPF that is also sized accurately for your home, for maximum performance and efficiency.
  • Heating and Cooling: Many people choose to install heat pumps because they are efficient for both heating and cooling. Heat pumps work using a refrigeration cycle just like other central air conditioners. Like traditional air conditioners, heat pumps use refrigerant move heat from the inside to the outdoors. The key difference is that heat pumps can also move heat from the outdoors to the inside in the cooling season.

However, these advantages may not make a difference for every home. If you are replacing a furnace, but your air conditioning system still works perfectly fine, you may not choose to replace both with a heat pump. And while heat pumps are an efficient source of heat, your technician may still recommend a supplementary heating source for extreme temperatures. Furthermore, the cost of operation varies from town to town. You’ll have to consider the cost of electricity versus the cost of gas in your area to decide if running a heat pump will save you enough money over time. However, some people may be more worried about environmental concerns than the cost of operation.

Every home will have different needs when it comes to choosing a new heating system. To talk to a professional technician about heat pump installation or replacement in Bay Village, call one of our friendly experts at Westland Heating and Air Conditioning today!

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How Well Does a Heat Pump Work in the Winter?

Friday, April 11th, 2014

It’s a serious question if you’re considering installing a new HVAC system: how well does a heat pump work in the winter? The sad answer is, not as well as you might like. Heat pumps have a lot of benefits, which we’ll discuss in a moment. But when temperatures drop below 40 degrees, they lose a lot of efficiency, and here in Rocky River, heat pumps run into cold weather on a regular basis. Ohio winters are often more than a heat pump can handle, but don’t worry. With a little modification, you can still enjoy all of the benefits that a heat pump can provide.

Heat pumps operate in a manner similar to air conditioners, circulating refrigerant gas that is first transferred into a liquid and then converted back into a gas. The process generates both warm and cool air, which the heat pump can blow into your home via a fan. In the summer, cool air is the priority. In winter it’s the warm air. The heat pump can handle both and because it’s merely transferring heat instead of generating it, it uses a lot less energy than traditional furnaces do.

Unfortunately, it does much less well in the cold, and in this neck of the woods “cold” is par for the course during the winter months. In practical terms, it removes a lot of the benefits that a heat pump has. Enter the hybrid unit. This brings a smaller auxiliary furnace to bear on days when the temperature gets really chilly, helping the heat pump out and ensuring that you still have a warm and comfortable home no matter what. Because the furnace in a hybrid system is small, it still costs less than other forms of heating, saving you money without having to skimp on your ability to warm your home.

Heat pumps and other heating system services in Rocky River are offered by the experts at Westland Heating and Air Conditioning. We know that heat pumps don’t always work as well as you’d like in the winter, and we have the solutions to make your system work as well as you could wish. Call us today to discuss your options. You’ll be glad you did!

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Did You Know Heat Pumps Need a Special Thermostat?

Sunday, November 17th, 2013

It would require work to locate a superior option for year-round comfort than an air-source heat pump. Heat pumps work as both air conditioners and heaters, giving you the temperature control you need, no matter the season. As a plus, heat pumps require less energy to run when it comes to heating than most other systems, such as furnaces. The U.S. Department of Energy estimates that a family of four can save 30%-40% off their yearly heating costs when they switch to a heat pump.

If you think a heat pump in Bay Village, OH will work well for your needs this coming year, contact our installation experts at Westland Heating and Air Conditioning. We can also provide repairs for heat pumps and answer any questions and concerns you may have regarding them.

The heat pump thermostat

We often hear questions about how heat pumps differ from other systems—specifically from air conditioners. Among these differences, we discuss the special thermostats that heat pumps need. Why do heat pumps require a particular type of thermostat that’s different from an air conditioner’s?

The reason is that heat pumps must control both heating and cooling. To switch from one to the other, the thermostat needs to signal the reversing valve to change the direction of the flow of refrigerant. Where a standard AC thermostat uses four wires (hot wire, compressor and outdoor fan wire, indoor blower wire, battery wire) to run the unit, a heat pump thermostat requires a fifth wire to handle the change in the reversing valve. These wires are usually color-coded, and the reversing wire is the brown wire.

Don’t try this at home (unless you have experts in your home)

However… please don’t use this information to attempt to install or repair a thermostat on your own. Even if you think you’ve managed a repair correctly and the thermostat appears to be working, even a slight miscalibration can lead to serious problems with your heat pump. It will incorrectly sense the temperature in your home and begin to shut on and off at the wrong time. This means less comfort for you and more wear and tear on your heat pump.

If you need help with the thermostat on your heat pump in Bay Village, OH, look to Westland Heating and Air Conditioning. We have more than a quarter of a century of experience, and our NATE-certified technicians will get any repairs done promptly and accurately. Schedule an appointment with us today.

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