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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Oct 2013
    Location
    Quebec
    Posts
    1

    Default Help Heatpump freezing

    Hello,


    I have a Lennox HP19 system that is around 15 years old. The compressor died 5 years ago and it was replaced.
    Last year this same issue started happening at the end of winter and we never fixed it. In summer it cools perfectly and uses minimal electricity. I've washed, cleaned everything and replaced the filters. First day of winter it worked perfectly (first time I switch it from cooling to heating). Today it froze again...
    I have two questions.
    1) Is it worth repairing or buying a new system? since it is old.
    2) What could the problem be?


    Thank you in-advance
    You can find the full resolution photos here
    https://www.dropbox.com/sh/nbt4z0m9t23smq6/kCpbLT5hQ9
    Photo 2013-10-24 10 17 48 AM.jpgPhoto 2013-10-24 10 25 19 AM.jpg

    Inspection Referral

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Knoxville, TN
    Posts
    2,446

    Default Re: Help Heatpump freezing

    You should call a HVAC contractor and have them check it out.
    You do realize this is a home inspector forum, and not a HVAC forum? While we, as inspectors, know that something is wrong, and may even have a clue as to what it might be, your best bet is to have a professional check it out - in person.


  3. #3
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Location
    Memphis TN.
    Posts
    4,311

    Default Re: Help Heatpump freezing

    Quote Originally Posted by Jack Feldmann View Post
    While we, as inspectors, know that something is wrong, and may even have a clue as to what it
    Jack,

    It be Froze !

    It Might have Choked Artie But it ain't gone'a choke Stymie! Our Gang " The Pooch " (1932)
    Billy J. Stephens HI Service Memphis TN.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Location
    Charlotte NC
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    2,303

    Default Re: Help Heatpump freezing

    What is pictured is a frozen indoor coil. The system is in cooling mode regardless of the setting of the T'stat. Best guess is bad transfer valve or mis-wired/faulty thermostat.

    As said, have HVAC tech check it out.

    The beatings will continue until morale has improved. mgt.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Location
    Memphis TN.
    Posts
    4,311

    Default Re: Help Heatpump freezing

    Quote Originally Posted by Vern Heiler View Post
    What is pictured is a frozen indoor coil. The system is in cooling mode regardless of the setting of the T'stat. Best guess is bad transfer valve or mis-wired/faulty thermostat.

    As said, have HVAC tech check it out.
    As this Unit was Manufactured June 1994 you should consider Replacement.

    It Might have Choked Artie But it ain't gone'a choke Stymie! Our Gang " The Pooch " (1932)
    Billy J. Stephens HI Service Memphis TN.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Location
    Charlotte NC
    Posts
    2,303

    Default Re: Help Heatpump freezing

    Quote Originally Posted by Billy Stephens View Post
    As this Unit was Manufactured June 1994 you should consider Replacement.
    That is what the service manager wrote on our shirt sleeves to be recited at every opportunity.

    Still say it could be something very simple and the system could work for many more years as it has a new compressor.

    The beatings will continue until morale has improved. mgt.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Spring Hill (Nashville), TN
    Posts
    5,847

    Default Re: Help Heatpump freezing

    With a heatpump freezing up the inside coil I would be looking at a stuck reversing valve. Turn it off, let it defrost and then turn on the emergency heat only until you can get it repaired. You would be better of replacing the entire unit due to its age.

    Scott Patterson, ACI
    Spring Hill, TN
    www.traceinspections.com

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Location
    Maryland
    Posts
    2,777

    Default Re: Help Heatpump freezing

    I would cast my lot with the reversing valve as the problem also or its control circuit.

    15 yr old system with a 5yr old compressor. If when the original compressor failed the system was completely flushed and dried it should have a another 5 to 10 years left in it depending on use.

    Get a good service guy that you can trust. The system is sealed and the compressor is working. The rest is electronics, fan motor and valves.

    It use to be (30 yrs ago) that heat pumps only had a 8yr life expectancy. AC had 20yrs. Newer systems, last 15yrs, have a longer life (18/20 yrs). It does depend on the quality of the compressor, system sizing and duct design.

    The more northern the location the less value the heat function.


  9. #9
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Location
    Memphis TN.
    Posts
    4,311

    Default Re: Help Heatpump freezing

    Quote Originally Posted by Billy Stephens View Post
    As this Unit was Manufactured June 1994 you should consider Replacement.
    Quote Originally Posted by Garry Sorrells View Post

    15 yr old system with a 5yr old compressor. .
    This " system" is going on 30 years and is likely beyond it's service life.

    It Might have Choked Artie But it ain't gone'a choke Stymie! Our Gang " The Pooch " (1932)
    Billy J. Stephens HI Service Memphis TN.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Location
    Charlotte NC
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    2,303

    Default Re: Help Heatpump freezing

    Quote Originally Posted by Billy Stephens View Post
    This " system" is going on 30 years and is likely beyond it's service life.
    Time to reload the windows free calculator

    The beatings will continue until morale has improved. mgt.

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Location
    Memphis TN.
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    4,311

    Default Re: Help Heatpump freezing

    Quote Originally Posted by Vern Heiler View Post
    Time to reload the windows free calculator
    Vern,

    If you look at OP's post they provided a link to additional pictures.( does Chrome Allow You to View Such?)
    * Photo Number 11 shows the Serial Number of this "System" S894F59421 this is June 1994 "Going on 30 years."
    ** if you have a Serial Number List that shows differently please post it.

    It Might have Choked Artie But it ain't gone'a choke Stymie! Our Gang " The Pooch " (1932)
    Billy J. Stephens HI Service Memphis TN.

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Location
    Charlotte NC
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    2,303

    Default Re: Help Heatpump freezing

    Quote Originally Posted by Billy Stephens View Post
    Vern,

    If you look at OP's post they provided a link to additional pictures.( does Chrome Allow You to View Such?)
    * Photo Number 11 shows the Serial Number of this "System" S894F59421 this is June 1994 "Going on 30 years."
    ** if you have a Serial Number List that shows differently please post it.
    2014 - 1994 = 20 yes?

    The beatings will continue until morale has improved. mgt.

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Location
    Memphis TN.
    Posts
    4,311

    Default Re: Help Heatpump freezing

    Quote Originally Posted by Vern Heiler View Post
    Time to reload the windows free calculator
    Yep,
    It's Time.

    It Might have Choked Artie But it ain't gone'a choke Stymie! Our Gang " The Pooch " (1932)
    Billy J. Stephens HI Service Memphis TN.

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Jun 2013
    Location
    Virginia
    Posts
    25

    Default Re: Help Heatpump freezing

    Check the air return. Make sure the filters are clean and there is free air movement and circulation through the system. If something gets placed in front of the air return grill and blocks the airflow, the indoor and outdoor coil will freeze. If thats not it, call an HVAC service person. It can be a couple different things. Get a quote. Anything over 2K and I would look at replacing the system with something more efficient.

    Is that insulation in the outdoor condensor housing?

    Last edited by James Kollhopp; 10-30-2013 at 08:09 AM. Reason: Added comment
    James Kollhopp
    www.WeInspectItHomeInspections.com
    "Promise only what you can deliver. Then deliver more than you promise."


  15. #15
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Plano, Texas
    Posts
    4,170

    Default Re: Help Heatpump freezing

    Quote Originally Posted by James Kollhopp View Post
    Check the air return. Make sure the filters are clean and there is free air movement and circulation through the system. If something gets placed in front of the air return grill and blocks the airflow, the indoor and outdoor coil will freeze. If thats not it, call an HVAC service person. It can be a couple different things. Get a quote. Anything over 2K and I would look at replacing the system with something more efficient.

    Is that insulation in the outdoor condensor housing?
    There is no way that lack of indoor air flow can make the indoor coil freeze when in heating mode. Remember the indoor coil gets hot when in heating mode (save for a short period of time for defrost) The coil would just get hotter as air flow is reduced.

    Jim Luttrall
    www.MrInspector.net
    Plano, Texas

  16. #16
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Columbus GA
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    3,746

    Default Re: Help Heatpump freezing

    Quote Originally Posted by Billy Stephens View Post
    Yep,
    It's Time.
    Billy, take off your shoes. Them double get me all the time.

    ' correct a wise man and you gain a friend... correct a fool and he'll bloody your nose'.

  17. #17
    Join Date
    Jun 2013
    Location
    Virginia
    Posts
    25

    Default Re: Help Heatpump freezing

    Quote Originally Posted by Jim Luttrall View Post
    There is no way that lack of indoor air flow can make the indoor coil freeze when in heating mode. Remember the indoor coil gets hot when in heating mode (save for a short period of time for defrost) The coil would just get hotter as air flow is reduced.
    You are correct. My mistake. Im still cooling where Im at, guess it helps to read the OP.

    I'd still check to see that your return is free and clear and you are getting good air circulation. The defrost cycle is reversing the heat pump cycle, using A/C to defrost. If you have obstructed airflow, it can still cause problems. I only mention it because I come from the school of thought of removing all the simple possibilities before calling in a professional.

    Sounds like you might need to call someone in. Only takes a second to see if someone put a box in front of the return vent or what-have-you.

    Last edited by James Kollhopp; 10-30-2013 at 11:46 AM.
    James Kollhopp
    www.WeInspectItHomeInspections.com
    "Promise only what you can deliver. Then deliver more than you promise."


  18. #18
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Location
    Memphis TN.
    Posts
    4,311

    Default Re: Help Heatpump freezing

    Quote Originally Posted by Rick Cantrell View Post
    Billy, take off your shoes.
    My Wife said NO!
    * she drew a picture of a Hat sitting on an empty pair of shoes and told me it depicted me wearing a pair of " Odor Eaters!"

    It Might have Choked Artie But it ain't gone'a choke Stymie! Our Gang " The Pooch " (1932)
    Billy J. Stephens HI Service Memphis TN.

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