Snow and ice damage can leave you without heat in the coldest part of winter, so take steps now to ensure that the outside component of your heat pump is protected. First, make sure the outside condensing unit sits on a properly constructed base above the level of the usual winter snow drifts. This will protect it from damage and keep it operating efficiently.
Here are two reasons your heat pump’s outside unit shouldn’t sit on the ground:
- Drifts of snow prevent air from circulating across the coils and keep the condensing unit from operating efficiently.
- Keeping the equipment off the ground helps prevent damage from ice buildup. During the defrost cycle, snow, ice and frost will melt off the coils, and the water will refreeze at the base of the unit. Over time, the ice buildup can damage the coils.
Even if you have raised the condensing unit the recommended distance off the ground, high drifts from unusually heavy snows and strong winds can build up around the equipment. Keep an eye on your heat pump when conditions are right for high drifts, and clear away snow and ice that collects around the equipment.
If you would like to talk to a qualified technician about protecting your heat pump from snow and ice this winter, please contact Paschal Heat, Air & Geothermal, serving northwest Arkansas since 1968.
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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