Can Snow and Ice Damage My Heat Pump in Manteo, NC?

While temperatures around Manteo, NC, are usually relatively mild, they can get cold enough for ice and snow. Heat pumps are generally a great option for heating and cooling homes but may not fare so well in freezing weather. Discover how ice and snow can damage your heat pump and what you can do to minimize that risk.

Restricted Airflow

Heat pumps rely on adequate airflow to transfer heat into and out of the circulating refrigerant. When there’s not enough air moving through, the system strains to draw more to absorb or expel heat. Snow and ice can restrict the air movement through the outdoor unit, causing excessive wear and accelerating heat pump repairs.

Damage to the Heat Pump’s Coils

The refrigerant moves through coils in the outdoor unit, which are vulnerable to winter weather. During icy weather conditions, moisture can get trapped in the coils and freeze, accelerating coil corrosion. Further, moisture can get trapped in the coil fins and freeze, which damages the fins, further restricting airflow.

Corroded or Cracked Condenser Sleeve

The condenser sleeve is the housing of the unit that sits outside and contains the condenser. Ice and snow can accelerate corrosion of this housing, like rust, reducing the protection it offers the internal components. In addition, a frozen condenser sleeve may crack and break.

Excessive Defrost Mode

Heat pumps have an automated defrost mode, which activates when the outdoor coils freeze up. When there’s a buildup of ice and snow around the outside unit, it’ll run this mode more frequently. This may stress the system, reducing its expected lifespan.

Reduced Efficiency

The restricted airflow that ice and snow cause prevents the system from absorbing enough heat. This makes your auxiliary heater more likely to activate, increasing your utility bills.

Make sure your heat pump is ready to handle the cold temps, ice and snow. Call today to schedule your heat pump maintenance with the trusted service technicians at North Beach Services Heating and Cooling.

Image provided by iStock

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