Your Heat Pump and Its Defrost CycleWhen it comes to maintaining your heat pump and your home’s temperature, Arkansas residents can benefit from fully understanding the system’s defrost cycle. Knowing the benefits it provides and precisely how it works will give you a better understanding of how this process is performed. 

Why Is The Heat Pump Defrost Cycle Necessary?

As temperatures plummet during the winter months, your home’s heat pump begins to compensate but at times frost can form, which inhibits the pump from running effectively. As the cold outdoor air reacts with the heat pump’s outdoor coils, frost may begin to build up, usually due to humidity, causing the pump to work excessively hard.

How Does The Heat Pump Defrost Cycle Work?

To ensure your heat pump’s energy efficiency, the defrost cycle can be used to eliminate any frost buildup on your heat pump’s outdoor coils. When the defrost cycle is activated, the heat pump temporarily operates in reverse, using its cooling cycle to warm the outdoor coils until the frost has evaporated. The heat pump’s outdoor fans are temporarily shut off during this cycle to hasten the process. A special thermostat, located underneath the outdoor coils, is able to detect this frost and engages the defrost cycle when necessary. A built-in timer allows the defrost cycle to run at set intervals, usually lasting between 30 and 90 minutes, until the outdoor thermostat reaches the desired temperature. Once frost is eliminated, the heat pump’s cycle returns to heating and is able to run smoothly and more efficiently.

For expert advice regarding your heat pump’s defrost cycle, as well as any other heating needs you may have, please contact us at Paschal Heat, Air & Geothermal. We have been serving northwest Arkansas residents for more than 45 years and continue to provide unmatched customer satisfaction.

Our goal is to help educate our customers in Springdale, Arkansas about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems).  For more information about heat pumps and other HVAC topics, download our free Home Comfort Resource guide.

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