The installation of your heat pump is a critical step in ensuring the heat pump performs effectively, is located correctly and the warranty is honoured by the manufacturer.
Many people opt for the cheapest install, trying to save on overall costs, but this is a decision that can easily be assisted by understanding that the cheapest option may cause untold problems for them in the future.
Experienced, accredited installers are generally qualified refrigeration technicians and/or registered electricians. They understand how a heat pump system works and what affect location and position of both the indoor and outdoor units will have. They have the specialised equipment required to complete the installation and have more often than not attended manufacturer courses on the correct installation and servicing of these systems.
The time it takes to install various heat pump systems can be as short as 3 hours for a very simple back to back installation (e.g. indoor and outdoor units located on either side of the same wall and virtually back to back) or up to an entire day for larger, more complicated installations. Multi or ducted systems may take a few days, depending on the number of units being connected.
Installation costs can be significant, so any adverts for extremely low installation costs should be investigated fully before signing on the dotted line. Make sure the cost of installation is included in your quote. Simple uncomplicated installations will obviously be cheaper than more involved installations.
Some of the factors influencing the cost may be:
• the size of the heat pump system being installed
• the length of pipe run connecting the indoor and outdoor units
• whether the system can be wired into a local circuit or has to go back to the switchboard
• the length of capping required to cover pipes to protect them from the elements
• outdoor unit needing risers (feet) and pavers if not on a concrete path or slab
• the path the drain will need to take (concrete drillers required, plumbed into existing plumbing, etc.)
Heat Pump Maintenance
When it comes to maintaining your heat pump there are a few things you should keep in mind. Of course, we’re talking about general maintenance and not repair if your unit is to break down. If your heat pump is operating incorrectly or worse, not working at all, please contact us or a professional to assess the issue with your heat pump.
In terms of what you can do to maintain proper operation of your heat pump system here are 5 things to keep in mind:
1. Keep things clear around the outdoor unit
It’s important to not restrict the air flow around the outdoor unit. If you’re familiar with how a heat pump works then you know that air must be able to freely pass over the lines to extract heat from the outdoors.
If there are leaves, tall grass or other debris it must be cleared away to ensure proper operation.
In Nova Scotia this primarily means ensuring all leaves are cleared away in the fall, keeping weeds and grasses trimmed and not storing and stacking anything too close to our outdoor unit.
2. Filters should be checked every month or so to ensure proper air flow
• The majority of heat pumps have filters. Some may be single use, but more often they are reusable.
• To ensure proper air flow and maximum efficiency of your heat pump filters can usually be washed with a mild detergent and allowed to dry.
• Before attempting to clean or replace the filter in your heat pump please check the operating manual for your exact device. If not available please contact the company that sold and installed your heat pump.
3. Coil can require cleaning from time to time can
• The coil inside the outdoor unit can require cleaning from time to time. Dirt and outdoor grime can build up and this will reduce the effectiveness. We advise that you contact a professional to handle the cleaning of the outdoor coil.
• If attempting to do this yourself ensure that the main disconnect is one, clean with a hose and flush any dirt/grease from the base pan once done. Be extremely careful not to get the fan motor or control box wet.
4. Oiling can be required of fan motors
The fan that moves air over the outdoor unit can require oiling from time to time. In most cases this should also be done by a professional.
5. Flushing of system can be required
While not always required, flushing of the coolant system is sometimes done after a few years of operation. This is definitely not something you can DIY. Contact a refrigerant professional or us at to arrange a maintenance call for your heat pump.