Every season is heat pump maintenance season. Because heating and cooling functions are combined in a single system, heat pumps get year-round operation and wear. However, the outdoor compressor/condenser unit may be neglected during seasons when you’re not out and about in the yard. Here in L.A., spring rains have greened the grass and acacias are blooming. While you’re outside mowing and trimming, or getting the pool ready for summer, here are a few maintenance procedures the outdoor half of your heat pump may be overdue for:
- Turn off the power to the outdoor compressor cabinet at the electrical disconnect switch, usually located in a weatherproof box close to the unit.
- Unscrew the retaining screws holding the protective grille to the side of the compressor cabinet. Remove the grille.
- With a soft brush or broom, remove grass clippings, leaves and other debris from the grille. A vacuum cleaner with a long crevice extension on the hose can be inserted between the condenser fan blades to to clean dust and dirt from the interior of the cabinet.
- Brush away leaves, dirt or debris from the condenser coil. Attach a soft brush to the vacuum cleaner hose to vacuum dust off the coil fins. Using a garden hose with a nozzle, spray water though the inside of the condenser coil toward the outside to flush out debris between the coils.
- Install the protective grille and retaining screws and restore power to the unit.
- Check the level of the compressor cabinet. A tilted unit may develop drainage problems or excessive wear. With a carpenter’s level, verify the cabinet level in both the front-to-back and side-to-side orientations. Correct any tilt by rotating the adjustable feet on the bottom of the cabinet until the unit is level in both orientations.
We’ve kept metro Los Angeles comfortable since 1969. For more advice on heat pump maintenance or a service call for repair, contact one of our pros at Air-Tro Heating & Coolingin Monrovia.
Our goal is to help educate our customers about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems). For more information about heat pumps and other HVAC topics, visit our website.
Air-Tro Inc. services the greater Los Angeles area as well as the metro areas of Riverside and San Bernardino County.