Kool Breeze of Northwest Florida, Inc. Blog : Posts Tagged ‘Heat Pumps’

Watch for Clearance around Your Heat Pump’s Compressor Unit

Monday, January 25th, 2016 by Tom Vatter

The outside unit of your heat pump is known as the compressor unit. (In the case of standard air conditioning system, it’s often called a condenser. However, a heat pump switches the function of this unit between evaporator and condenser.) This cabinet is where the heat pump absorbs heat while it’s in heating mode and exhausts it in cooling mode. (more…)

Why Go from Gas Heating to a Heat Pump (Plus a $400 Incentive!)

Monday, December 14th, 2015 by Tom Vatter

If you’ve ever thought about making the switch from using a gas-powered heating system like a furnace to instead using a versatile heat pump, the time to act is now! Currently, Gulf Power is offering a $400 incentive for customers who convert from a gas system to a heat pump. The conversion must be completed before December 31, 2015. You can call our installation technicians for more details about how to qualify for this offer—as well as to talk about the all-important installation arrangements. (more…)

Is Geothermal an Option for Cooling a Home as Well as Heating It?

Monday, April 27th, 2015 by Tom Vatter

The term geothermal energy is usually associated with heat. After all, the energy that geothermal systems draw on is the heat of the earth, which remains stable no matter the temperature above ground. Geothermal systems harness the natural heat emanating from the earth’s core, which is a renewable and constant power source. It’s logical to assume that a geothermal comfort system for a home would mainly provide heat.

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Heat Pump Components: The Reversing Valve

Wednesday, March 18th, 2015 by Tom Vatter

How do heat pumps manage to provide both air conditioning during the long Florida summer weather and effective heating during the mild winters? A large part of the explanation involves going into the basics of refrigeration and how a standalone air conditioner works. However, the shorter answer is that a component called the reversing valve is what makes a heat pump able to operate as both a heater and an air conditioner.

Because of how critical this component is for the operation of a heat pump, if it malfunctions, a heat pump will end up trapped in one mode or the other. Should you find that your heat pump will not change from heating to cooling mode, or vice versa, then call up Kool Breeze and talk to our repair technicians. They have extensive experience fixing heat pumps in Fort Walton Beach, FL and the surrounding areas, and they will deliver the work necessary to restore your home’s heat pump to full operation once more.

What the reversing valve does

The reversing valve is a valve attached to the refrigerant line that leaves the compressor in the outdoor unit of a heat pump. Inside the valve is a slider; depending on its position, the slide will route the refrigerant leaving the compressor down one set of lines or the other.

When the heat pump is in cooling mode, the position of the reversing valve sends the hot refrigerant from the compressor to the outdoor coils, where it releases heat, cooling the refrigerant. It then travels to the indoor coils, where it absorbs heat and lowers the indoor air temperature.

When the heat pump switches to heating mode, the slider in the reversing valve moves position so that the hot refrigerant leaving the compressor travels first to the indoor coils. It releases its heat, warming the indoor air, then moves to the outdoor coil and absorbs heat before returning to the compressor.

Like any mechanical device, the reversing valve can break down and become stuck in one position. Repairing the problem usually requires replacing the valve entirely, and this is a job you must leave to professionals.

The next time that your heat pump malfunctions and you cannot get it to do both parts of its job, give Kool Breeze a call. We provide comprehensive services for heat pumps in Fort Walton Beach, FL and are ready around the clock whenever you need service.

Common Heat Pump Issues

Monday, February 16th, 2015 by Tom Vatter

Heat pumps have become very popular systems for good reasons: they are very energy efficient, they can both heat and cool your home and they have a long lifespan of 20-25 years. But even with all these positive attributes, a heat pump is still a mechanical device and it may need repair at some point. If you have a heat pump system for your home, here are some of the common problems that can develop with heat pumps:

Refrigerant Leaks

Heat pumps work by transferring heat from one location to another; they do this with the help of refrigerant. As such, your heat pump needs an exact amount of refrigerant in order to work properly. Refrigerant leaks can develop in a number of places; telltale signs of refrigerant leaks are low or no heat (or cooling) and/or icing on the coils. Only certified experts can handle refrigerant, and leaks can be tough to find, so any problems that develop with the refrigerant in your heat pump system should always be handled by an expert.

Problems with the Reversing Valve

The reason a heat pump can both heat and cool is because of a component called the reversing valve. This valve can the direction in which the refrigerant flows, allowing the heat pump to offer either heating or cooling for your home. Reversing valves are somewhat complex components; problems that can develop with reversing valves include refrigerant leaks, solenoid issues and getting stuck in a certain position.

Blower Issues

If you have a ducted heat pump system, your system has a blower that blows the cool or warm air into your home. Different kinds of problems can develop with blowers, including loose or broken fan belts, motor issues, electrical issues or problems with the blades.

It’s good for homeowners to know what some of the more common problems can be with a heat pump, but this doesn’t mean you should handle repairs on your own. Heat pumps are complex devices and should only be repaired by trained experts. Kool Breeze has been helping customers will their heating and cooling needs since 1986, so if you are experiencing any kind of issue with your heat pump in Navarre, call us today to schedule your next appointment with us.

The Reversing Valve: The Key Component of Heat Pumps

Wednesday, December 10th, 2014 by Tom Vatter

Heat pumps combine two comfort functions into a single system: forced-air heating and cooling. During the long hot season in Florida, a heat pump can provide a level of indoor cooling that is equal to a comparably sized standalone air conditioner. During the shorter periods of cold weather, a heat pump can switch over to providing a sufficient level of warmth to keep a home pleasant without excessive energy waste. In Pensacola Beach, FL, heat pumps are one of the best ways to stay comfortable around the year.

In most of the important ways, a heat pump works like an air conditioner. The key difference between the two is a component called the reversing valve. Without this valve, a heat pump would remain in one mode or the other. If you have a heat pump that either won’t give you heating or won’t give you cooling, the fault probably lies in the reversing valve. Call Kool Breeze, any time of the day or night, for the repair work necessary to restore your heat pump to full operation.

The Reversing Valve

The job of the reversing valve in a heat pump is to change the route of refrigerant between the indoor and outdoor coils, which will cause the two the exchange their functions of condenser and evaporator. When the refrigerant moves first from the compressor to the indoor coils, the heat pump is in heating mode. When it moves first to the outdoor coils, the heat pump is in cooling mode.

A reversing valve operates by a pressure difference inside a metal tube, controlled by a solenoid. The pressure change moves a slider through the tube, and this slide straddles two of three tube openings. When at rest (de-energized), the slide creates a pressure difference on one side of the tube that allows the refrigerant from the compressor to move first toward the indoor coils and makes them act as the condenser, releasing heat to the inside of the home. When the slide shifts to the other side of the valve (energized) the pressure change now permits the refrigerant to move to the outdoor coils first, making them the condenser and releasing heat to the outdoors. An electrical connection from the thermostat controls whether the reversing valve is energized or de-energized.

A broken reversing valve will mean a heat pump that is trapped in one mode or the other. If this occurs, the reversing valve will need to be replaced (this is less expensive than trying to repair them), and this job requires professionals to handle. The thermostat can also lose its connection to the valve, which will usually trap the pump in heating mode because the valve will remain de-energized. If your heat pump starts to act as if it has a bad reversing valve, call for trained heating technicians right away.

At Kool Breeze, we want you to enjoy comfortable temperatures in your home no matter the weather outside. We install heat pumps in Pensacola Beach, FL and provide all the repair and maintenance work necessary to keep them working for many years. Give us a call the next time you need heat pump service.

How Does a Heat Pump Work for Heating?

Wednesday, December 3rd, 2014 by Tom Vatter

Heat pumps are a great alternative to more traditional systems when it comes to heating your home. More and more homeowners are taking advantage of heat pumps for their energy efficiency, versatility, and safety compared to furnaces and boilers. However, many people are still ignorant of how heat pumps actually work. To remedy that, let’s take a look at the inner workings of a heat pump.

Parts of a Heat Pump

A heat pump system consists mainly of two parts. These parts are the interior and exterior units. As the name suggests, these units are installed inside and outside the home, respectively. The function of these units changes, depending on whether the heat pump is in heating or cooling mode. Since we’re only talking about heating in this article, however, we’ll call the inside unit the condenser, and the outside unit the evaporator. These names refer to the coils that are present in each unit.

The other major part you should know about is the refrigerant line. This line runs between the two units, and is filled with one of several kinds of liquid responsible for transporting heat.

How it Works

When the heat pump is turned on, the refrigerant flows out to the exterior unit and into the evaporator coil. The coil then evaporates the refrigerant, turning itself into a heat sink for the surrounding air. Through this process, thermal energy is leeched from the air and into the coil, where it is stored in the refrigerant gas. The refrigerant then runs inside to the interior unit, where the condenser coil condenses it back into a liquid state. This releases the stored thermal energy, which the interior unit can then use to warm the air to be circulated. The now-cold liquid refrigerant is then moved back out to the exterior unit to continue the process.

This method of moving heat from one place to another, rather than relying on combustion to generate heat, is what makes heat pumps so energy efficient.

If you’d like to know more about how heat pumps work, call Kool Breeze today to speak with a qualified technician. We professionally install heat pumps in the Pensacola Beach area.