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What is a Heat Pump and How Does It Work?

septb2A heat pump is an essential part of any HVAC system, because it functions in both the winter and the summer. Your heat pump is what makes your central air and heat function. The heat pump consists of two parts: an outdoor unit, which is referred to as the air handler, and an inside unit, which is the heat pump itself. The heat pump uses a compressor to circulate refrigerant between the two unites, which acts as the carrier to transfer heat in and out of the home.

You may think that your HVAC system creates heat, but it is actually just moving it, constantly, from area to another. In the summer, the compressor runs one way, transferring heat from inside your home to the outside unit – essentially removing heat from your home rather than pumping cool air in. When the weather turns cold, like it is now, the pump will reverse direction and start moving heat from outside to your inside unit. Even if it is below freezing outside, there is still heat energy there for the heat pump to grab and bring into your home.

One benefit of using a heat pump instead of a system that generates heat is the energy efficiency. Moving something back and forth requires a lot less energy than it does to actively create the same thing.

The changing of seasons is the perfect time to check that your HVAC system is in perfect working order. Contact Comfortable Climate Heating and Air Conditioning for heat pump maintenance in Newport News, VA and the surrounding area, today.

How a Bad Compressor can Compromise Your HVAC System

septb1Your HVAC system is an important part of your home – it keeps your indoor climate comfortable and consistent all year round. But what happens if the compressor in your heat pump doesn’t work properly? When you’re compressor fails, the entire system will fail to function, which means that it will not provide the heating and cooling that you need. Here are some systems of what can go wrong with your heat pump.

The Motor

The compressor is run by a motor. If the motor is not running, the refrigerant will not circulate, which means that heat will not be moving between the indoor and outdoor components. If you hear screeching or groaning noises, the motor is likely about to fail. If you do not hear the compressor at all, it means the motor is no longer working.

Leaking Refrigerant

Loose or broken connections in the system can cause refrigerant to leak, which can mean a drop in power.

Worn Down

If your system is poorly maintained or dirty, the pump can wear down. You may hear the fans working, but the heat pump may not be on.

If you suspect that there may be a problem with your HVAC system, contact Comfortable Climate Heating and Air Conditioning any time day or night for heat pump repair in Yorktown, VA and the surrounding area.

When Should You Replace Your Water Heater?

augblog2Most people don’t think about their water heater until it breaks. There are some telltale signs that your water heater needs to be replaced, but since your unit is hidden away in your basement, you probably never look. Out of sight, out of mind. Here are four signs you should look out for that can help you avoid a disaster.


How old is your water heater? The life span of a typical water heater is about 10 years, so the best course of action is simply to replace a heater that is 10 years old or older before it starts to cause problems.

Don’t know the age of your water heater? Check the serial number on the manufacturers’ sticker, particularly the first three digits. The first letter corresponds to the month. The letter A will stand for January, B is for February and so on. The second two digits are the year. For example, the serial number “C061052638” tells us that the water heater was installed in March of 2006.

Strange Noises

If you start to hear a rumbling noise coming from your water heater, it’s a sign that sediment buildup has begun to harden. This means that your heater is less efficient and more likely to start leaking.

Rusty Water

If rusty water begins coming out of your faucet from the hot water piping only, it is a sign that the inside of your hot water heater tank is rusting away from the inside. To ensure that it’s not just rusty pipes causing the problem, drain a few buckets of water from your heater. If it still comes out rusty after a few buckets, you probably need a new heater.


Check for moisture or pools of water around the tank. A leaky tank is a definite sign that you need to replace your water heater right away.

For water heater installation in Yorktown, VA and the surrounding areas, contact Comfortable Climate Heating & Air Conditioning at CCAirAndHeat.com, today.

3 Energy Saving Ways to Prepare Your Home for Fall and Winter

augb1As summer draws to a close, you may already be thinking of how you can get your home ready for the colder months. Here are three ways that you can prep your home for fall and winter that will save you money in the process.

Run Fans in Reverse

This seems like an odd tip for cold weather, but trust us – it makes a big impact. Most people believe that fans are only useful when it’s hot, but what you may not know is that most ceiling fans also come with a reverse switch. When the fan spins in the opposite direction, it grabs warm air that has pooled against the ceiling and circulates it back down into the house, actually making the air warmer. This quick fix can save you up to 10% on your heating costs.

Insulate Your Windows

You can easily and inexpensively get a window insulation kit from any hardware store and install it yourself. These kits consist of thin sheets of plastic film that go over your windows, and when properly installed are nearly invisible. The film provides a buffer against drafts, which will lower your heating costs.

Turn Down Your Water Heater

This may seem counter-intuitive, but lowering your water heaters’ temperature from 140 degrees F (the temperature that installers typically set) to 120 degrees F can save you a ton on water heating costs without sacrificing your hot showers.

Another thing you should do before the weather turns cold is to make sure your HVAC system is working properly. For water heater repair in Gloucester, VA and the surrounding areas, contact Comfortable Climate Heating & Air Conditioning at CCAirAndHeat.com