When it’s the dead of winter, we turn to our heater to keep our household comfortable through that frigid season. However, snags can come up in our heating system that for some reason make it even chillier indoors than outdoors. If you find yourself dealing with cold air despite the thermostat being cranked up high, you could be dealing with an issue with your home’s heat pump,

The heat pump may have faulty parts.


If you find your heat pump blowing cold air despite being in heat mode, it could be that the heater itself is on its last legs. Your home’s HVAC system could develop issues that will need to be repaired in order for the heat pump to stop blowing cold air. Some common heat pump problems that cause units to blow cold air include refrigerant leaks. This requires the assistance of a certified HVAC technician. Sometimes, the system could just need a refrigerant charge.

A bad reversing valve could also be the culprit. This valve is responsible for reversing the flow of refrigerant, so your system could still be in cooling mode and not in heating mode. Your heat pump could also just be losing efficiency after years of use. Be sure to assess the age of your system for both the indoor and the outdoor unit. It’s best to do put your HVAC system through regular maintenance after each busy season for the heater and air conditioner.

The HVAC system might not be in heating mode.


It’s important to stay on top of regular HVAC maintenance through each season. Whether you’re in cooling mode or heating mode, you want to make sure your system is at its peak. However, some homeowners may forget about defrost mode. The majority of heat pumps function essentially as reverse air conditioners, thus, producing warm and cold air. This allows the heat pump to go into defrost mode. Ice buildup is a common sign of an issue that could be a potential cause of the lack of warm air from the pump.

When in defrost mode, the heat pump will usually blast cold air from its vents for one of two minutes before the heat kicks in. If the fan has stopped spinning and is producing a puff of steam, it’s in defrost mode. Be sure to make sure that your unique system doesn’t have any other settings or components, such as links through the thermostat, that are creating this heat pump problem. You’ll want to make sure that your system is capable of getting you to a comfortable temperature.

The system is blowing “cool air”.


It may not be the heat pump. It could be the homeowner. It’s not an insult, it’s just a matter of comfort. You should try measuring the air temperature of the output with a thermometer to check for a difference between the air temperature outside and your indoor temp. If you’re finding it far too frigid, there’s a legitimate problem with the system. After all, heat only blows out between 85 to 90 degrees Fahrenheit, so it’s not a tremendous offset from the average body temperature.

If the heat pump is heating on its own and hasn’t yet switched to backup coils that are a part of the heat demand within this system, you may notice the slightly cooler air. Call in a trained technician if you’re not sure what the possible issue could be that’s causing this cool air. Be sure to continuously check your thermostat, as a glitch with that could lead to a quick fix that has your heater getting back to keeping you warm through to spring.