Intelligent Air Services Blog : Archive for the ‘Heat Pumps’ Category

3 Reasons There’s Ice Forming on Your Heat Pump

Monday, March 7th, 2016

Cedar Park, TX still has its share of cold weather this time of year, and it’s natural to assume that ice will form on the outdoor part of your heat pump just like it does everywhere else. In point of fact, however, ice on the heat pump can be a big problem, and it might not be the weather that’s to blame. If the ice seems excessive or you witness a corresponding loss of heat or similar problem accompanying its appearance, you should shut off your system and call in a trained professional right away. Here are three reasons there’s ice forming on your heat pump, most of which need a technician to correct.

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Keep Your Outdoor HAVC System Clear of Debris

Monday, January 25th, 2016

If you own a heat pump here in Austin, TX, it probably contains an outdoor compressor unit which vents air out of the system in order to facilitate the heating or cooling process. The same holds true with a more traditional air conditioner, which likely hasn’t seen much use in the past few months, but similarly uses an outdoor compressor unit to vent warm air out of your home. In both cases, it’s very important to keep the unit clear of bushes, shrubs, and other debris. That means not only ensuring that there’s a good two feet of space between the unit and any foliage, but preventing anyone from stacking items nearby or otherwise blocking the system. Always go out and clear any debris away after a storm or rainfall, and it’s probably a good idea to check for weeds and any other growth every few weeks in the winter. Why? Because they can have a detrimental effect on your system.

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Common Problems with Heat Pumps This Season

Monday, December 7th, 2015

Austin, TX is an ideal place for a heat pump, which combines the effects of a heater and an air conditioner into one single unit. Heat pumps work well in areas with mild winters like ours, but which still need a reliable heating source for the occasional cold day in the winter months. They can save you a great deal of heating costs and with regular maintenance should last a long time. But like any other system, it suffers problems from time to time, and when it does, you should contact a trained professional to have it addressed. Here’s a list of common problems with heat pumps this season that you should look into.

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What Makes a Heat Pump Different from a Standard Air Conditioner?

Monday, April 27th, 2015

When it comes to residential heating and air conditioning in Austin, TX, a heat pump is a great installation. Heat pumps use the basic operating principles as an air conditioner to siphon heat from one location and release it in another. (A process known as heat exchange.) The major difference between an air conditioner and a heat pump is that a heat pump can move heat both directions: it can release it outdoors or release it indoors. With only a change on the thermostat, a heat pump changes from an air conditioner into a heater.

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How Do Heat Pumps Heat and Cool a Home?

Friday, January 23rd, 2015

The widespread availability of heat pumps is an exciting trend in the HVAC industry because these units are such highly effective and efficient heating and air conditioning systems.

It surprises many homeowners with any knowledge of traditional heating and air conditioning units, because an air conditioning system is usually installed independently from a furnace. But owning a heat pump essentially eliminates the need for a furnace, as a heat pump is an air conditioner in which the refrigeration cycle also works in reverse.

How Does Air Conditioning Work?

Air conditioners operate via refrigeration, which involves the use of a chemical blend called refrigerant, a set of coils, a compressor, the expansion valve, and a fan, among other vital parts. Refrigerant absorbs heat from a home inside at the evaporator coil, when it evaporates into a gas. It lets off heat at the condenser unit outside as it condenses into a liquid. A fan blowing over the indoor coil moves cool air into the room.

A heat pump has an extra component known as a reversing valve that allows refrigerant to move the opposite direction, absorbing heat from the outside to bring into your home. The indoor coil becomes a condenser while the outside coil is for evaporation. Check valves help redirect the refrigerant so it flows through components the right way and so that it can avoid certain parts, like the expansion valve.

Why Are Heat Pumps Efficient?

Heat pumps do have a balance point at which it struggles to gather enough heat from the outside air to heat a home. That’s why most installers add on strips of electric heating elements (that resemble the inside of a toaster) as a backup heating source, although a furnace may also be used in some cases.

The thermostat is programmed to recognize when the heating strips are needed, but it’s important to note that these use a lot of energy to use and should be in use sparingly. Heat pumps are efficient because they only use electricity to move heat from place to place, but the additional heating strips are inefficient because they actually generate heat.

Call the heating and cooling experts at Intelligent Air Services for more information, professional installation, and service for heat pumps in Austin, TX.

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