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Is Heat Pump Ice a Good Thing?

If you notice ice forming on your heat pump this summer, you might take it to be a good thing at first. After all, isn’t the system supposed to be getting cold while it’s cooling your home? However, heat pump ice is far from a good thing. In fact, it’s a sign that your system is in deep trouble. Let’s take a look at what causes heat pump ice, and why you should call for repairs as soon as you notice it.

Coils and Air Flow

The heat pump is able to cool your home by evaporating refrigerant in the inside coil of the system. This process draws heat out of the air, so that it can be released outside. As the heat is drawn from the air, the temperature around the coil drops. The temperature drops below the dew point, which causes condensation to form on the coil. Normally, the flow of warm air from the home’s ducts is enough to prevent the temperature from dropping too low. If that air flow is interrupted, however, the condensate will freeze and the coil will ice over.

Problems

While the coil is iced over, the heat pump will be unable to absorb heat from the home. This will cause the cool air output of the system to drop significantly. The ice can also build up enough that the weight of it will permanently warp the coil, requiring that it be replaced. Finally, the ice can spread down the refrigerant line to other parts of the system and cause them to malfunction, as well. Eventually, the entire system can break down because of a frozen evaporator coil. This is why you should call for repairs as soon as you notice ice forming on the system.

SPS Mechanical Inc. offers a full range of heat pump repair services throughout Haddonfield, NJ.

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