Oasis Heating, A/C & Refrigeration Blog : Archive for the ‘Heat Pumps’ Category

Odd Things Your Heat Pump May Do in Winter

Monday, January 2nd, 2017

Is this your first winter using a heat pump for comfort? Whether it’s because you had the system installed in the spring to prep for summer, or you’ve moved into a house that already has a heat pump, you’ll probably run into some unusual behavior from it during the winter. Most of the time, there’s nothing wrong with the heat pump—it’s simply that you’re unaccustomed to seeing the way this type of comfort system works in cold weather.

Here are two specific heat pump winter issues that seem like repair problems… but aren’t.

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Your Heat Pump Won’t Switch to Heating Mode: Here’s Why

Monday, October 17th, 2016

If you have a heat pump to handle the comfort needs of your home, you’ll soon switch over to heating mode for the first time in many months. You can expect the heat pump to make the transition smoothly, since all it has to do is change the direction the refrigerant flows and siphon out an amount of the refrigerant.

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Is It Time to Retire Your Old Heat Pump?

Monday, October 3rd, 2016

Fall is when homeowners should evaluate their heating systems and see if they’ll make it through another winter. Last week we wrote about this topic, asking if it’s time to replace an old furnace. But not every home uses a furnace for comfort; many opt for a heat pump instead, which not only takes care of winter comfort, but also summer comfort. We’ll take a look at deciding if the heat pump in your house is ready to retire and be replaced with a new unit.

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There’s Ice on My Heat Pump—Is This a Bad Sign?

Monday, December 28th, 2015

If you know even a little bit about the operation of the heat pump that keeps your household cool in summer and warm in winter, you’ll understand that the outside unit needs to absorb heat from the ambient air and carry it indoors in order for it to work in heating mode.

Should you notice that there is ice developing along the outdoor cabinet of the heat pump, it may worry you. Is this normal during the winter?

The answer is, confusingly, both yes and no. But we will quickly unconfuse you below:

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Does My Heat Pump Need a Spring Tune-Up?

Friday, March 6th, 2015

Heat pumps are hard workers. Unlike separate heating and cooling systems that get a break in off seasons, your heat pump works year-round to provide you with both heating and cooling. As such, it’s important to schedule your heat pump for maintenance at least twice a year. The ideal times of year to schedule maintenance are fall (heating) and spring (air conditioning), and with spring around the corner, this is the perfect time of year to schedule your heat pump for an AC tune-up in Arlington, VA. The professionals at OASIS Heating, A/C & Refrigeration, Inc., have been helping customers with their heat pump needs since 1998, so call us today before the hot weather arrives!

Why AC Maintenance?

You may be thinking that your heat pump was doing something totally different from cooling while it was heating, but it really wasn’t. This is because heat pumps don’t generate heating or cooling; they simply transfer heat from one location to another. As such, all the components used for cooling your home are also used to heat your home, so heat pumps work twice as hard as a separate cooling or heating system would.

Extra work means extra wear and tear, and when a system is worn down, it will be more prone to malfunction and possible breakdown. During a maintenance appointment, your heat pump will be closely inspected to check for problems, cleaned, and if needed, the air filter will be changed. One of the most important checks the technician will do during the appointment is inspect the refrigerant level to make sure there are no refrigerant leaks in your heat pump system. Electrical components will be checked, as well as the compressor.

Get Ahead for Cooling This Summer

There is nothing more frustrating than turning on your AC the first hot day only to find that it isn’t working properly.

Scheduling an AC tune-up for your heat pump system helps get you ready to have a cool, dry summer indoors, so call the experts at OASIS Heating, A/C & Refrigeration, Inc., today!

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Common Heat Pump Repair Needs

Thursday, August 21st, 2014

One of the great advantages of having a heat pump for your house—indeed, what many people would call the greatest advantage of a heat pump—is that it can work all year long keeping you comfortable, no matter the season. So as we come to the end of the summer and begin to move into the fall, you won’t have to worry about changing over from an air conditioner and prepping a heater that hasn’t operated in months. If you’ve kept your heat pump current with a regular maintenance plan, it should be ready for any weather.

Heat pumps can still experience the need for repairs, no matter how well-maintained they are. Here are some of the more common problems they can encounter that will require making a call to professionals. OASIS Heating, A/C & Refrigeration, Inc. is available 24 hours a day for heat pump repair in Arlington, VA. With our more than 15 years of experience, we are one of your best choices for heating and cooling services.

Heat pump repair needs you may encounter

  • Broken reversing valve: This is an issue that is specific to heat pumps; air conditioners do not contain a reversing valve. The valve controls the direction of flow of refrigerant through the system and toggles the heat pump between heating and cooling mode. Should the reversing valve fail, the heat pump will remain stuck in one mode. Repair technicians will need to remove and replace the broken valve.
  • Cleaning the condensate drain: Heat pumps have two sets of condensate drains, one for the indoor unit and one for the outdoor unit. Water condensation along the coils drips down into a pan and the drain removes the excess water into the plumbing system. Should the drain become clogged (algal growths are the usual culprit), water will start to overflow from the pan. Technicians will remove the pan from the drain and either clean out or replace the drain.
  • Thermostat recalibration: Even a small calibration problem with a thermostat can lead to the heat pump behaving strangely and failing to keep a house warm or cool. Homeowners often mistake this for repair needs within the heat pump, but trained repair technicians will track down the source to thermostat if it is the actual problem. Recalibrating the thermostat will often fix the problem, although sometimes more serious wiring repairs are necessary.

Heat pumps are complex appliances, and you should never try to troubleshoot malfunctions on your own. Only trust these repairs to trained experts in heating and air conditioning.

At OASIS Heating, A/C & Refrigeration, Inc., we’re proud to have NATE-certified technicians on staff to help you receive the best possible heat pump repair in Arlington, VA.

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The Basics of Ductless Mini Split Heat Pumps

Thursday, March 20th, 2014

Heat pumps stand as viable alternatives to traditional forced-air systems, combining the features of a heater and an air conditioner in one. Here in Arlington VA, heating with them makes a lot of sense since they do well in climates with comparatively mild temperatures. Heat pumps are available as centralized units, but you can also get ductless mini split heat pump systems. Why a ductless mini split might work for you, it’s important to understand the basics.

Ductless mini split systems entail a series of individual air handling units placed around your home, each connected to the outside unit. Each one is tasked with heating or cooling a specific section: an individual room or similar area. This section arrangement allows you to tailor the temperature to whatever you want in each room, or even turn the heat or air conditioner off in parts of the home you aren’t using. The indoor units of the ductless mini split systems need to be installed on an outside wall, but otherwise their installation parameters are very flexible, allowing them to be placed wherever you decide they can do the most good.

Ductless heat pumps work just like central heat pumps, they both use a closed loop system that circulates refrigerant gas just like an air conditioner. The gas passes through a compressor which subjects it to a great deal of pressure, then into condenser coils, which bleed the heat off to turn the gas into liquid. (The generated heat can be used to warm your home during the heating cycle.) The liquid then moves through an expansion valve, which releases a set amount into the evaporator coils. As the refrigerant evaporates, it pulls heat from the surrounding air, which can then be used in the system’s cooling cycle. The refrigerant then returns to the compressor valve to start the system anew.

These are just the basics of ductless mini split heat pumps. For specifics, OASIS Heating, A/C & Refrigeration, Inc. is standing by to help. We operate in Arlington, VA, heating and cooling are both a part of our service, and we can discuss the installation of a ductless mini split heat pump system with you. Call us today to make an appointment!

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Why Is My Heat Pump Blowing Cold Air?

Monday, February 17th, 2014

Heat pumps are incredibly useful systems for providing year-round home comfort. They improve upon the concept of the air conditioner to use the same system of heat exchange to also provide warm air. It’s as easy as turning a switch to move from heating mode to cooling mode.

But what if one day your heat pump stops doing half its job? If it’s winter, and your heat pump starts to blow out only cold air, there’s something wrong that will require professionals to investigate and repair it. If you need this sort of work on your heating in Fairfax, VA, give the technicians at OASIS Heating, A/C & Refrigeration, Inc. a call, any time of the day or night.

Reasons your heat pump is staying in cooling mode

The most common reason for this occurrence is a problem with the reversing valve. This component is one of the key parts that differentiates a heat pump from a standard air conditioner. The reversing valve changes the direction that refrigerant flows through the heat pump, and this is what makes the heat pump switch from being an air conditioner to a heater and back. An electric charge to the valve controls whether it is in one mode or the other. If the heat pump malfunctions, it will remain in one mode until professionals come and replace it. Do not attempt to change a reversing valve on your own.

Another possibility for a heat pump remaining in cooling mode is a miscalibration in the thermostat or a thermostat malfunction. A miscalibrated thermostat may not know to turn the heating on because it is misreading the temperature. If trouble occurs in the thermostat wiring, the unit may lose its ability to signal to the heat pump to switch modes. Repair technicians will be able to quickly discover the source of the problem and fix it.

There are a few other possibilities that could result in a heat pump experiencing this trouble. Because of the complexity of a heat pump’s operation, you’ll need to have trained heating technicians examine the unit to diagnose the issue and how to target repairs.

Our trained repair staff at OASIS Heating, A/C & Refrigeration, Inc. is ready 24/7 for the repairs you need to keep your heating in Fairfax, VA up and running. Whether your heap pump is stuck in cooling mode or something else is stopping it from giving you the comfort you need, trust to our service to fix it.

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