Heating with Heat Pumps

Heat Pumps can be a very economical way of heating and cooling your dwelling depending on geographical location and the cost of electricity in your area. The volatile costs of natural gas, propane, and oil has enabled these conditions where it can be cheaper to heat with a heat pump than with fossil fuels. There is a common conception that a heat pump blows cold air and while this can be true in some cases it is not true to all heat pumps.

If a heat pump is blowing cold air when in the heating mode then it needs to be looked at because there exists a problem that needs to be corrected. Even when the outside unit kicks into the defrost mode the unit should provide adequate heat to heat the zones which it serves. Again, if it is not providing adequate heat then it needs to looked at for a technical problem that needs correcting. A well designed heat pump system, working properly and efficiently, can provide competitive and economical heat for your dwelling.

Author: High Performance HVAC

Heat Pump Open Control Voltage Circuits Trouble Shooting


One of the more frustrating and difficult situations with heat pump diagnostics is open circuits in the control wiring. There is a logical process to follow when attempting to locate the failure…

Original post: Wayne Shirley HVAC Tips

Heat Pump Refrigerant Leak Detection Devices


No doubt, my most frustrating service issue has been locating refrigerant leaks. And I’ll be the first to admit it was due to my own ignorance, from simply not doing a little research. I started out with a cold sensor technology electronic detector, bought a second cold sensor electronic detector and eventually concluded electronic detectors were pretty much worthless, at least for my desires and needs.

Next , I let someone talk me into the ultrasonic detector method. I never found the first leak using it. In fact, I couldn’t find a leak in my truck tire with the thing…so much for ultrasonics.

When I discovered the fluorescent dyes, I thought my leak search headaches were over. And to a certain extent, locating some leaks did prove to be much easier. So long as the black light would shine on the leak area, and it was reasonably dark around the suspect area, and the dye was actually coming out of the leak, I was in pretty good shape. But then there’s the waiting period between injecting the dye, and actually seeing it exit the puncture…and the mess…and all the paraphernalia required to actually locate a leak…

At some point I walked into my favorite wholesale house and told the manager, “Today is the day I buy my last leak detector…if it doesn’t do what I need it to do, I’m just gonna’ slit my wrists, and let my wife collect the insurance…” I bought another electronic detector with heated sensor technology…I had done a little research. That turned out to be one of the finer moments in my service career. It worked so well and was so reliable, I didn’t believe it for a while. But once I finally gained some confidence with the tool, my leak search issues were mostly a thing of the past. I can find most leaks now about as fast as I can access the equipment…especially those pesky indoor coils. Add to the detector’s capabilities my knowing where to look, and my batting average is close to 1000. The biggest problem I’ve had recently was a 410A leak that didn’t want to sniff out well.

Before I get too many people overly irritated with my conclusions, let’s back up a minute or two and pay some due respect to the aforementioned devices and methods. I’m sure there is some useful purpose for electronic detectors that use cold sensor technology. I just don’t believe it’s the residential sector. They will indeed detect refrigerant…but they also detect other stuff, so you never know for sure if the alarm is refrigerant or some other unknown something.

The ultrasonics are revered by some folks, who claim good success in finding leaks. I’m not gonna’ call those same folks liars.

The dyes are absolutely an option for some situations. If for whatever reasons you need to pinpoint the location of a leak, that’s the way to go, unless you want to try the bubble solutions.

But for me, most of the time, I just want to know if a coil is leaking, or an accumulator, or a service valve, or a liquid line filter or whatever. If the coil is leaking, I’ll replace the coil…if the accumulator is leaking, I’ll replace the accumulator.

Most of the repairable leak sources are visible via oil deposits. The electronic detector will usually get you in the general vicinity, and the oil, along with some bubble solution will show you the target.

Author: Wayne Shirley HVAC Tips

Reduce Your Carbon Foot Print


Tips on how to reduce your personal contribution to global warming.

If you use electricity to heat your home, consider installing an energy-efficient heat pump system. Heat pumps are the most efficient form of electric heating in moderate climates, providing up to three times more heating than the equivalent amount of electrical energy it consumes. A heat pump cools your home by collecting the heat inside your house and effectively pumping it outside. A heat pump can trim the amount of electricity you use for heating as much as 30 to 40%.

If your furnace is more than 15 years old, replace it with an ENERGY STAR qualified furnace, which is 15% more efficient than a conventional furnace. If you have a boiler, consider replacing it with an ENERGY STAR qualified boiler that is 10% more efficient than a new, standard model.

If your heat pump is more than 10 years old, replace it with an ENERGY STAR heat pump, which uses at least 20% less energy than a standard new model.

If your air conditioner unit is more than 10 years old, consider replacing it with an ENERGY STAR air conditioner, which uses at least 10% less energy than a standard new model. Select the unit with the highest Energy Efficiency Ratio (EER) for greater savings. Ask a trained salesperson for help choosing the size that’s right for your needs.

Install glass doors on fireplaces, which act as a barrier against warmed air returning up the chimney. Some models of glass doors are equipped with small vents along the bottom or sides to allow a controlled amount of combustion airflow into the fireplace. The glass allows the heat from the fire to radiate into the room. Because glass doors reduce the amount of conditioned air that is drawn up the chimney, they also reduce infiltration of outside air into the home.

Ameri-Serv @ Ameri-Serv Inc. Heating and CoolingGo here to see the original: Ameri-Serv