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Signs Your Heat Pump Is Low on Refrigerant


Similar to a refrigerator, a heat pump needs refrigerant to work properly. Refrigerant is a chemical that the heat pump uses to cool your home in the summer and heat your home in the winter. If you’re like most Marietta, Georgia, homeowners, you may not know how to check your heat pump’s refrigerant levels. Note the following signs that can signal that your heat pump is low on refrigerant: leaking, icing, and inefficient performance.

Leaking Heat Pump

Even though a heat pump uses refrigerant to cool or heat a home, the refrigerant doesn’t dissipate during regular operation. Rather, the system changes refrigerant from liquid to gas and vice versa. The level, or charge, of refrigerant shouldn’t become lower with time. However, leaks can cause your heating system to lose refrigerant.

Leaks that cause the loss of refrigerant are usually at connector points. Regular maintenance can prevent leaks from occurring.


If your heat pump is leaking, other malfunctions could likely occur. Ice may develop over the heat pump’s evaporator coil. Since heat absorption is the refrigerant’s purpose, a lack of refrigerant will hinder the evaporator coil’s ability to absorb heat.

This hindered ability to absorb heat causes the moisture on the evaporator coil to freeze. Unfortunately, simply scraping the ice off or allowing it to melt, will not fix the problem. You will need to have an HVAC contractor seal the leak and add more refrigerant.

Inefficient Performance

Low refrigerant will place extra stress on various components of your heat pump. The stress will be especially excessive with the compressor. If you notice a significant increase in electrical costs, a low refrigerant level may be the culprit.

A refrigerant leak can cause a number of issues for a heat pump. If you believe that your heat pump is leaking refrigerant or another issue is affecting the heating and cooling of your home, call us at 678-369-8866. One of our skilled E. Smith Heating & Air Conditioning technicians will help resolve any issues you have with your heat pump as soon as possible.

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