Why is my heat pump leaking?

Heat pumps are the best way to heat your home in the winter and can also cool it in summer. With heat pump units lasting around 10-15 years, from time to time you may encounter a problem. One way to get around this is to get your unit serviced regularly by the experts, but if you do happen to have an issue here are some of the reasons yours may be leaking:

Drainage Issue

Most heat pumps have a drain pan that is used to collect condensate from the unit. If this sump becomes clogged with debris or mould it can overflow and create a puddle around the pump. If the drain line becomes clogged or the condensate pan is installed incorrectly, water will flow out and cause a leak. Usually the heat pump system will automatically shut down before this happens, however, the problem still needs to be resolved before the pump can work again.

Evaporator Coil Freezes

In summer, low coolant levels can cause the cooling coils to freeze. This will impair the cooling process and prevent the heat pump from working properly. If the refrigerant level is lower than it should be in the system, ice may form on the evaporator coils. This is problematic because it limits the cooling process, which affects the performance of the pump. When the ice melts, puddles of water form and can enter your system.

Dirty Coil

If your coil becomes covered in dirt and dust, it may fail and stop working, causing water to drip and pool on the ground. Similar to the importance of replacing air filters throughout your home, coils must be cleaned regularly to prevent dirt and dust from building up. Cleaning the evaporator and condenser coils is not an easy task. First, the coil must be thoroughly cleaned with a special cleaner or a mixture of soap and water. You will also need a hose to clean it from the outside, making sure you hit the valves at the front.

Cracked Overflow Pan

A heat pump extracts excess moisture from the indoor air during the cooling process, similar to an air conditioning system. Moisture accumulates on the coils and flows into the drain or overflow pan. Over time, the overflow pan may show signs of rust or corrosion, which can lead to cracks. Through a cracked pan, water will seep in and out of the device. This often results in large amounts of water accumulating on the floor. This is dangerous because a wet floor creates a slippery hazard for you and your family, potentially making your home a less safe place. In addition, the presence of leaks reduces the efficiency of your heat pump, making your interiors less warm and cosy during the cold winters and less cool during the humid summer months.

Clogged Condensation Drain

A condensate drain system relies on some pipes to carry moisture away from your home. Physical locks can cause a physical lock to break the thread. If clogged, water will rise until it runs out of the drain pan, resulting in a leak.

Fixing issues early is the best way to deal with leaks. Leaving a problem won’t make it go away. Schedule regular maintenance inspections for your commercial or residential units and always enlist the help of a specialist.