What is done in a Heat Pump Service?

  • The heat pump is mounted outside and is exposed to the elements of the weather.      In the unit, there is an evaporator and a condenser, where the transfer of heat takes place. Any build-up of dirt on the evaporator or condenser will over time affect the performance of the heat pump’s efficiency.

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  • If there is a build-up of sediment it will clog up the heat pump filters, [as well, for example, shower heads, taps inside the house, etc.] that will need to be cleaned. The build-up of sediment is a limescale which is a chalky white mineral deposit (alkaline) which is the result of a chemical in the water known as “hard water”.
  • A limescale remover and a soapy detergent are used to dissolve the sediment and clean the piping in the heat pump.

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  • The Y water strainer must be cleaned. The photograph below shows a strainer that was completely blocked with sediment.
  • The heat exchanger coils are checked for fouling. Dirty or fouled heat exchangers result in an inefficient operation, and if fouled, a chemical cleaning treatment may be necessary. We use a de-calk solution to de-calk the heat exchanger.
  • The water circulation pump must be checked to ensure it is operating effectively and that there are no water leaks in the union connections, the head and flange of the pump.

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  • The compressor bay is cleaned with a soft bristle paint brush and a damp cloth. Inspecting for signs of oil on the pipework. This could indicate a gas leak in the system.
  • The configuration of the piping is examined to see that it is operating at the optimum efficiency with the correct valves. This is a common problem where installers have not installed a dual drain cock or the sensor is placed in the incorrect position. The function of the solenoid valve is then tested.8
  • The controller settings, the tank temperature setting, the outlet water temperature, the clock time and any on/off time settings are checked. If they are incorrect, we reset them.

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  • The PC board housing and electrical terminals are cleaned and checked for any loose terminals.

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  • The cleaning of the Evaporator coil, with cleaner detergent, will prevent dust build-up that could restrict the air flow.

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  • It is important to check the condition of the pipe insulation on the heat pump flow and return pipes. If they damage the insulation it will be replaced. Below is an example of piping without any lagging installed on the pipes, thus heat loss is a problem.
  • The cleaning of the outer casing and a general cleaning of the heat pump will be done.
  • A change-over switch should be installed during the original installation. If not, the client should be given the option to either install or not. A change-over switch can either supply electrical power to the heat pump or the electric geyser. If the heat pump malfunctions and it needs repairs, the change-over switch is turned to the electric geyser. Therefore, the client is never without hot water while the heat pump is repaired.

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NOTE: A heat pump has two sections, firstly, where a plumber does the plumbing and secondly, where an air conditioner technician does the repairs to the circulation pump if it is not working, leaking gas, the PC board replacement and the capacitor replacement. Please note this is not part of the heat pump service.

The electric geyser has its own service requirements, not included in a heat pump service:

This is additional:

The anode on the geyser needs to be checked annually and replaced if necessary. The geyser should be checked for leaks. This may not be necessarily coming from the inner cylinder itself but from the pipe connections. Should water leak into the cylinder insulation, the hot water cylinder will corrode. If there is a build-up of sediment in the tank, it will affect the life of the geyser and will clog up the heat pump filters. The element and pressure valves need to be check regularly.

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