Just purchased a heat pump?
Tips to maintain your unit
Installing a heat pump is the first step in ensuring you have the most efficient technology to meet your home's heating and cooling needs. The next important step is to ensure your system is maintained well so that it performs efficiently and its lifespan is optimized. Here are our top tips:
Clean filters regularly
Cleaning requirements defer by system type (as an example, central systems ingest more dirt from returns on the floor), presence of pets, number of occupants, etc. Best practice is to increase the frequency of the filter cleaning if the filters are found excessively dirty. Filters on indoor units should be cleaned several times a year and replaced once a year. Cleaning a filter can improve the airflow in your home by as much as 30%.
System settings and maintenance
Set the heat pump mode to "Heat" in in the winter and "Cool" or "Off" in the summer, rather than "Automatic" mode for increased efficiency. Automatic mode will automatically switch between heating and cooling based on indoor temperatures, the system could start cooling on a sunny winter afternoon or heating on a cool summer night. Manually selecting the setting mode will ensure your system will not battle between heating and cooling. Once you find a comfortable temperature setting on either "heat" or "cool" mode, you can "Set it and forget it," as heat pumps are designed to adjust to changing conditions automatically and efficiently.
Your installation commissioning sheet and/or manual will provide guidance on how to set your system up optimally as well.
Schedule your installer follow up or maintenance visit in the season opposite to when you installed your system. The installer will check the system settings to ensure they are set for optimal efficiency and comfort and make adjustments as needed.
They can adjust the thermostat settings to use the heat pump preferentially, and check the outdoor unit mounting for cracks and damage. Use the visit to have them answer your questions.
Schedule regular maintenance every 1-2 years.
Ensure airflow to outdoor unit is not restricted
Allow free airflow to the outdoor unit. Ensure the outdoor unit is above the snow and away from dripping water. Clear away snow to prevent freezing damage to the coil. The outdoor unit should be checked and debris removed annually.
Use thermostat controls efficiently
Setting back the temperature for night time or when away is generally not recommended for heat pumps to avoid sharp ramp up heating. Ramp up heating occurs when the heat pump has to call for back up heating sources when trying to raise the temperature by greater than 2ºC quickly. Back up heating sources typically use more electricity and costs more money.
If you need to warm up your home, slowly ramp up the heating over the course of an hour. A heat pump is most efficient when set to one operating temperature. Your contractor can help you establish the right settings for your heat pump.
Download this print-ready version of the heat pump maintenance tips [PDF, 37 KB]