A heat pump can provide warm air to a house even when the temperature outside is below freezing. I have said before and I’ll say it again: refrigeration is the single greatest invention ever invented by man. At least Thomas Edison never tried to claim the credit that he invented that. As far as I know. What the heck, the Jerk of Menlo Park probably DID try to claim credit for inventing refrigeration. The mechanism by which a heat pump works exploits the tendency of liquid to absorb heat as it expands and turns into a gas. The heat pump then provides warmth by compressing that gas into a liquid. As with all scientific appliances, things can occasionally go wrong with a heat pump and it pays to know what to look for.
Check the thermostat when the pump is not running–it may be set too high. If the heat pump kicks on when you lower the thermostat, you should not have any other problems.
Check the electrical disconnect switch on a heat pump if the thermostat is in working order. Heat pumps are usually equipped with a reset switch located in the outside cabinet unit.
Clean the outdoor coil and check both the filter and the blower unit if your heat pump’s cycles of operation seem shorter. Check the outdoor coil for any foreign object lodged in the coil creating an obstruction–this can cause a short cycle. Clean the filter to help improve efficiency. Replace the blower if you notice that the heat pump’s cycles are shorter than normal and the intensity of air being blown seems corrupted.
Look for heavy ice accumulation on a heat pump as a sign that it is not properly defrosting. If there is no ice at all or the defrost cycle is short, check to make sure that the pump is not stuck in cooling mode.
Reduce uneven heating of your house by balancing the system of ducts running through the house. Check that dampers are open and free from obstructions. Use a vacuum to clear away dust clogs in the duct system.
Do not attempt to restart the heat pump immediately if the power has been off for more than an hour at temperatures lower than 50 degrees. This is a time delay factor built into the heat pump that allows the heating element to properly warm up.
Tool-like Stuff I’ll Have to Have to Troubleshoot the Heat Pump:
** Screwdriver** Clean filter
Home Tips: Heat Pump Troubleshooting [http://www.hometips.com/repair-fix/heat-pump.html]
Creative Homemaker Ultimate Guide to Home Repair and Maintenance”; Mike McClintock, Sr. Ed.; 2006