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Heat Pump Problems: Refrigerant Leaks

Monday, March 5th, 2018 at 11:00 am

HVAC-technicianHeat pumps are unique in that they are used all year long in order to both heat and cool homes. That means that any problems with your heat pump could potentially put your comfort at risk at any time of the year. Clearly, it is in your best interest to pay close attention to your heat pump and its performance, and to alert a member of our team as soon as you have cause to suspect that trouble is brewing.

When it comes to heat pump problems, one of the most serious that you may encounter is the refrigerant leak. Refrigerant leaks are one problem that can cause many others, so you really want to have the issue resolved as soon as possible. This will not only help to protect your comfort, but it will help to prevent potentially serious damages to your heat pump. Contact the Fresno, CA HVAC  professionals on our staff if you suspect a refrigerant leak.

What Does Refrigerant Do in the System?

We are not exaggerating when we say that your heat pump would be totally useless were it not for the refrigerant that it uses in both its heating and its cooling processes. The refrigerant, you see, is the heat transfer fluid that the heat pump uses in order introduce heat into your home in the winter or to remove it in the summer.

When cooling your home, the refrigerant is evaporated indoors. That allows it to remove heat from the air. Then, the hot refrigerant travels out to the condenser coil. There, it is condensed and its heat is released into the air outside. In the winter, this process is reversed. The heat pump evaporates the refrigerant outdoors, and then it compresses it to further boost its thermal energy. The refrigerant travels indoors, where it is condensed in order to release its heat for distribution throughout the house.

What Kinds of Problems will Refrigerant Leaks Cause?

Low refrigerant levels are seriously going to impede your heat pump’s ability to heat and cool your home. If the refrigerant is low, then the heat pump will have to work much harder in order to maintain comfortable temperatures in your house. That will lead to increased energy costs, even as your overall comfort levels plummet. If you don’t want to pay more for less comfort, you need a heat pump with a proper refrigerant charge.

Additionally, your system is going to be at a much higher risk of encountering operational problems. The harder a system works, the more wear and tear is placed on that system. That can really snowball and lead to damages over time. Your compressor could even break down, and when that happens, the cost to repair it—if repairs would even be possible—are so high that the only real option is a full system replacement.

Remember, heat pumps don’t consume refrigerant in their operation. It is supposed to cycle through the system again and again. If you do have low refrigerant levels, the system either was not charged properly at the time of installation, or you’ve got a leak. Work with us to keep your heat pump in outstanding working condition.

California Indoor Comfort Inc. Where comfort and technology come together.

 

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