Operation

  • Air-source heat pumps work most efficiently when you keep your thermostat at a comfortable temperature consistently, even overnight and when you are at work or away for a day or two. Unlike fossil fuel heating, temperature setbacks are not recommended.
  • Continue to use your heat pump in very cold weather. If you feel like your house is not getting enough heat, turn up the temperature on your thermostat and consider setting the air flow at the highest setting. Properly sized and installed cold-climate air-source heat pumps can heat homes when the outdoor temperature is well below zero.
  • If you are using your existing heating system as a backup, use it only when needed. If you do not have integrated controls that automatically coordinate the operation of the two heating systems, turn the thermostat for your existing system down a few degrees lower than the usual setting to ensure that your air-source heat pumps are your primary heating source. If you feel that your heat pumps are not providing enough heat on very cold days, turn up the backup heat slightly.

Homeowner Maintenance

  • To keep your units operating efficiently, clean or replace indoor air filters every 1-6 months, depending on how dirty they are. Check out INsource Renewables’ video on how to clean your air filters. The primary filters can be washed in the sink or cleaned with a vacuum cleaner; some optional filters, like deodorization filters, may need replacing over time.
  • Keep leaves, debris, snow, and ice away from the outdoor units.
  • Trim back any plants or bushes that are encroaching on the heat pump.
  • Make sure the airflow is unrestricted around both the outdoor and indoor units.

Professional Maintenance

  • Schedule a maintenance check with your air-source heat pump installer every 1-2 years (or at the installer’s recommended interval) to make sure that everything is running smoothly.
  • Check on your system at least once per season to make sure there is no obvious damage, like mold, ice buildup, or indicator lights turned on. If there is damage to your heat pump, schedule a maintenance check with an installer to make sure your air-source heat pump is working properly.
  • If doing home renovations after installing an air-source heat pump, be extra careful to make sure that equipment and refrigerant lines are not disturbed, which could cause a leak.

For more information, see NEEP’s guide on Getting The Most Out of Your Heat Pump

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