BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (WBRC) — Freezing temperatures are going to be keeping HVAC (Heating, Venting & Cooling) units working overtime the next few days and you need to be prepared if your outside unit freezes.
Kerry Adkins, the president of OnTime Service, says when temperatures drop to below freezing, many HVAC units are sure to freeze up at some point, but they are programmed with a sensor that knows what to do when that happens.
Adkins says the unit will go into “deep frost mode.” When this happens, you might see steam coming off the unit but Adkins says you don’t need to worry. It’s simply heating up to melt the ice off. As soon as it’s hot enough, Adkins says it’ll switch back to heating mode.
If you unit is working properly, you home should stay warm, even during this process.
“Most heat pumps have an emergency backup auxiliary heat and it’s either electric heat strips or it’s a gas fire and it becomes basically just a regular furnace at that point,” said Adkins. “If you have emergency backup heat with your heat pump, it will typically just flip over to that.”
For the unit to do the automatic switch, you need to make sure your emergency back up heat switch is on. Adkins says you can normally check your thermostat to make sure it’s on.
If your heat pump stops working altogether, you need to call a professional immediately. Adkins says it’s unfortunate the difficult weather is happening during a holiday weekend because less contractors will be available.
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