How to Help HVAC Heat Pumps Run Better in Unpredictable Spring Weather

Temperatures during the spring can be all over the place. One day it’s 70 degrees outside, and the next day it’s 30. These wild shifts in weather can make heat pumps – which work much differently than boilers or furnaces – work harder than they need to.

As you know, in climates with mild winters, an air-source heat pump can operate at high efficiency all winter long. This can save money for the homeowner due to reduced energy costs. However, when the temperature drops below 40 degrees, generally an air-source heat pump will not operate as efficiently.

Here are a few ways that you can help customers with HVAC heat pumps save money heating their homes during the spring and fall seasons:

  • One way you can help is to optimize airflow direction in their system. If you’re heating a home, you want to direct the air to blow towards the floor and away from the occupants. This will evenly heat their home, avoid cold drafts and help them be more comfortable. For the warmer summer months, redirect the airflow up towards the occupants.
  • Another way to ensure a system runs efficiently is to clean the dust filters. If the air flow is restricted, the heat pump needs to work harder and runs less efficiently. Filters should be cleaned often as a matter of protocol, but they should definitely be cleaned right away if the heat pump’s indicator light is on or the filters are visibly dirty.
  • If your customer has an outdoor unit, keep it clear of shrubs, leaves or sticks—even making sure that debris are removed from the fins—to help the unit receive air more easily and run more smoothly.
  • Lastly, make sure the unit has the correct refrigerant charge. Doing so will ensure that the system runs at its optimal efficiency so it will keep running throughout the season.

You can also add a back-up heating option for customers who rely too much on their heat pump. If temperatures are typically below 30 degrees, their heat pump may not be enough to keep the house warm.

One back-up option is electric heat strips inside the ducts that can turn on when needed and will add more heat to the flowing air. If your customer has a natural gas connection, they can add a natural gas furnace, which would be more efficient than electric strips but can be costly to install.

To aid in your service call, pick up a Job Link System Charge and Air Kit (JL3KH6). It helps you quickly and easily take a full system snapshot. You’ll know the pressures and temps right away. You can also use the Wireless Power Clamp meter (SC680) to troubleshoot electrical issues you may come across.

Hopefully these tips help you on your next service call and keep your customers’ HVAC heat pumps running strong.






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