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Why Your Heat Pump is Stuck in One Mode

Heat pumps are quite popular for their ability to switch back and forth between heating and cooling modes. While that is one of the main reasons that heat pumps are so popular, this ability can malfunction under certain circumstances. If your heat pump is stuck in one mode, read on to find out why.

The Reversing Valve

Heat pumps are actually constructed very similarly to traditional air conditioners, with two units passing refrigerant back and forth between them. What allows the heat pump to offer heating as well as cooling functions is a part called the reversing valve. The reversing valve is a 4-way valve that sits in the heat pump’s refrigerant line. A slide in the valve moves back and forth to dictate the direction that refrigerant flows through the system. The slide is controlled by an electromagnet called the solenoid. When the heat pump is put into a specific mode, the solenoid activates and pulls the slide into the correct position.


If your heat pump becomes stuck in one mode, it’s very likely because you have a problem with your reversing valve. There are two possible issues that might be affecting your reversing valve. The first issue is that the slide is stuck in the valve. The valve will need to be opened and the slide freed in order to restore full function. The other possibility is that the solenoid has lost its charge. If that’s the case, it can’t really be repaired. The solenoid will need to be replaced with a new one in order to solve the problem. Once the reversing valve is repaired, the heat pump should be restored to proper condition.

If your heat pump is stuck in one mode, call SPS Mechanical Inc. We offer a full range of heat pump repair services throughout Haddonfield, NJ.

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