Heating Problems and questions

Discussion in 'HVAC' started by tkerston, Dec 14, 2010.

  1. Dec 14, 2010 #1

    tkerston

    tkerston

    tkerston

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    Hi...I live in Sandusky Ohio on the Lake Erie waterfront in a 3 story Condo building. Our heat pump units are on the roof with lots of winter weather exposure...ie; snow, ice, sleet, etc...many of us (condo owners) are experiencing problems with the snow and ice building up on the fan blades of the rooftop units and causing our units to shut down or shake horribly on top of the roof. My question is this...can we spray WD-40 or some other solvent based product on the fan blades to prevent the snow/ ice buildup? Thank you in advance for any helpful suggestions and or advice. This probably wasn't the most efficient type of heating unit for our area/ region, but I am afraid this is what the developer gave us and it has become a maintenance nightmare! Again, Thank you in advance for any assistance

    Tracey
     
  2. Dec 14, 2010 #2

    paul52446m

    paul52446m

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    I live in north Mi. and would not sell a heat pump, too many problems. I would think the WD-40 would just wash off when wet.
    Its like a snow blower, the only thing i have found that works, is a good car wax. You would have to take the top off to use wax. Maybe someone else will come up with something. Later Paul
     
  3. Dec 14, 2010 #3

    kok328

    kok328

    kok328

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    Dumb question but, why would the heat pump condensor fan be running when in heat mode?
     
  4. Dec 14, 2010 #4

    paul52446m

    paul52446m

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    I don't think thats a dumb question
    at all and i am just dumb enough about heat pumps that i can't answer that
    question. I am into furnaces and boilers. Maybe we have a heat pump tech in this group, if so its time for you to take over this thread!!! Paul
     
  5. Dec 15, 2010 #5

    woodchuck

    woodchuck

    woodchuck

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    I'm not a heat pump tech but my house has a heat pump. The entire system runs whether it's cooling or heating. The heat is just the reverse of cooling. The fan pulls the outside air across the condenser to take the heat out of the air. Rain will freeze easy because of the cold air. Mine sets where a valley in the roof will drain water directly on the unit. I had trouble with it icing up until I put a cover about 3 feet above it to deflect the water and the rain that would normally hit it. It's enough clearance so that the fan can run normally. Our heat pump has been working in the 20 degree weather we've had the last several days but I think the back up heat comes on some especially to warm the house in the morning after the temp is set back 5 degrees overnight. I don't think I would use one up north with the number of days in the 20's is a lot more than we have in Alabama.
     
  6. Dec 15, 2010 #6

    paul52446m

    paul52446m

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    A condenser should not be put where water from a roof will run through it. That a good way to splash dirty water all over your house and too much water can change the eff. of the unit.
    Be real careful putting a roof over a condenser, make sure it high enough so as not to recycle the air through it instead of using new air. Later Paul
     
  7. Dec 15, 2010 #7

    kok328

    kok328

    kok328

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    Yea, heat pumps are not our specialty in MI. However, I do understand the basic theory in that there is a reversing valve so that the heat is now across the evap coils and the cool is across the condensor coils. I guess it makes sense now that the outdoor air temp would hopefuly be warmer than the condensor coils in heat mode and this is what will disapate the cool to keep it from freezing up.
    However, to install a heat pump unit in OH is just plain nuts.
     
  8. Dec 17, 2010 #8

    tkerston

    tkerston

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    Paul52446m, Thank you for the wax suggestion...I intend to try that!! Thank you all for your responses!! Obviously, heat pumps are not ideal for our region, however they are what the developer used in construction in our 3 1/2 year old condos and I am afraid we are stuck with them for awhile : (. I really do appreciate all the responses and suggestions!!

    Tracey
     

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