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My goodman heat pump outdoor unit is frosting up

It has been frosting up lately and i know that there is a defrost timer on the unit but i don't know where to find it or what it looks like. how do i set it when i find it? and what if it keeps frosting up???

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Posted on Jan 31, 2009

  • shmegma Jan 31, 2009

    my swimming pool will not fill up! what do i do?

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There is a loud humming coming from outside unit, the fan is not rotating.


Your question does not include what type of system you are asking about, but the assumption is that it is a heat pump. The loud humming is the compressor running by itself while the fan is off.

This is the typical way a reasonably new heat pump operates:
There is a coil temperature sensor that initiates a defrost period to eliminate the frost/ice build up on the outdoor coil. In the defrost mode, the outdoor fan shuts off and the reversing valve in the heat pump reverses the direction of refrigerant flow to warm the outdoor coil. The same coil temperature sensor senses the temperature of the external surface of the coil and tells the defrost control when the frost is gone initiating another 'reverse cycle' to put it back into heating mode. In the heating mode, the outdoor fan runs again.

If you have the heat pump installed where snow drifts accumulate, you will have a problem extracting heat from the outdoor air, and coil frosting and freezing will be exaggerated. If you have excessive ice build up due to a defosting issue, the ice can actually stop the fan from rotating, but you would hear loud bangind and rattling for hours first as the fan blades come in contact with the ice.

If you do not have drifts, but continually have an excessive amount of ice build up, either the sensor is possibly faulty or the defrost control board is faulty. The sensor's clip could easily have been knocked loose from the coil by ice and is no longer sensing coil temperature and if so the result would be the lack of defrost initiation.

Feb 13, 2015 | Air Conditioners

Tip

Why is Ice Forming on my Heat Pump


Many people have heat pumps and never realize that ice can form on the outdoor unit. Some have seen ice on their heat pumps but do not know how much is too much until they have a problem with not enough heat. Still others have a backup heat source and never know that they have a problem.

First off lets establish that heat pumps will form ice on the outdoor unit, usually whenever the outdoor temperatures go below about 40 degrees F. This threshold for ice depends a lot on the humidity of the air outside. If it is raining or snowing, the ice will form much more readily and rapidly. It is normal for ice to form on the outdoor unit because it is the cold side of the system when it is running in the heating mode. Because of this cooling, if the outdoor temperature is near or below freezing and there is moisture in the air, it will condense and freeze on the unit.

To keep the ice from building up to the point where it stops all the air flow, the outdoor unit will have a defrost timer board. This operates in conjunction with a sensor. Every 30 – 90 minutes the board will check the sensor. If the sensor tells the board that ice has formed on the coil it will then change the unit over from heating to cooling. This will make the outdoor unit the hot side for a short time to melt away the ice. While it does this, the unit will also energize the back up heat which is often an electric coil or a furnace. This will keep the inside air from blowing cold while the unit is defrosting.
When the sensor feels the coil temperature at about 50 degrees F it will then tell the board to return to the regular heating and switch the coils around again.

If this process fails to work for some reason the outdoor coil will become a big block of ice and look something like this.

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When your outdoor coil becomes totally frozen over it stops all the air flow through the coil and stops the heating process. In extreme case it can be very difficult and becomes a very long process to defrost the coil. You need to practice a lot of patience and care when defrosting a badly frozen coil. A torch or preferably a heat gun (hair dryer) can be used to speed up the defrost process. If it continues to occur the timer needs to be set to defrost more often or either the timer or the sensor has gone bad.

http://www.fixya.com/support/r3563896-air_conditioning__cleaning_the_condenser

http://www.fixya.com/support/r3636724-r_410a_new_refrigerant_air_conditioning

http://www.fixya.com/support/r3636751-air_conditioner_seer_seasonal_energy

on Jan 30, 2010 | Air Conditioners

1 Answer

Need a diagram of Goodman heat pump showing defrost relay area


Turn the power off to the heat pump and get a magnifying glass. There is probably only one board inside the outdoor unit anyway, but look closely through the magnifying glass and you should see a set of tiny needle size pins....maybe two rows of 4 parallel pins. There should be a black plastic jumper across a set of pins corresponding to the defrost length. Near those pins and written on the board there will be something relative to defrost duration. This is why you need the magnifying glass especially if you have any trouble with close up vision.

There is probably not a setting that is adjustable for the intervals between one defrost cycle and the next as they are typically initiated not on elapsed time, but on temperature of the outdoor coil providing input to the board that defrost is necessary.

Jan 08, 2015 | Goodman Manufacturing Goodman GPH1543M41...

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In middle of night, heat pump makes noise like something comes on and builds up then cuts off with a humming sound over and over again. Temp outside was only 43 degrees F.


The unit is defrosting. This is normal for heat pump systems, and they do it worst when the outdoor temperature is between just below freezing up to about 45 degrees F. The more humid it is outside, the more frost builds up, and the more the outdoor unit will defrost. Below about 25 degrees, most of the water is on the ground (not in the air), so the units will not have to defrost as often when it is that cold outside. If you are curious, you can monitor the unit on a cool, foggy day to see if it is actually building up frost, or if the unit is set wrong and defrosting on a false alarm. IF THE UNIT DOESN'T LOOK VISIBLY FROSTY, IT HAS BEEN SET TO DEFROST TOO OFTEN AND IS WASTING ENERGY! A TECH CALL TO REMEDY THE UNNECESSARY CYCLING WILL PAY FOR ITSELF QUICKLY!

While the outdoor unit is in this mode, it should be steaming and making a buzzing noise. This verifies the frost is being boiled off of the outdoor coil. 25355479-u40lsvyytnuesyuv3fbafhtd-5-0.jpg
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Jan 05, 2015 | Air Conditioners

1 Answer

Hi, I have an LG artcool A09AHD aircon unit and after a while on the heat cycle, the unit stops and shows a circle with a snowflake and a waterdrop within the circle. Does anybody know what alarm tjis is?...


This may just be the defrost cycle for the outdoor unit. In the heat mode, the outdoor unit builds frost on the coil. The outdoor unit senses how much frost has built up on the coil and reverses the refrigerant cycle to allow the outdoor coil to warm up and defrost it. After a short period, the unit then restores itself to the heat cycle. This is normal operation and nothing to worry about. During the defrost cycle, you may feel some cool air inside your home.

Oct 26, 2013 | LG Air Conditioners

2 Answers

I have a Mitsubishi heat pump that runs well but the outdoor unit does not defrost what could be the problem.


Why does my heat pump ice up in Winter?
Heat pumps naturally ice-up in the winter. It is normal for the entire coil to be covered in a white frost and even light ice, during cold weather conditions. However, it is bad for the entire unit to be encased in ice. This indicates ductless heat pump problems which should be addressed quickly to save energy and avoid serious damage to your ductless unit. These systems should periodically go into a defrost cycle. This keeps the unit running efficiently. If the coils are blocked by ice, proper heat transfer between the coil and the outside air will not occur.
How does the defrost mode work?
When the mini split heat pump goes into defrost, the reversing valve inside of the outdoor unit is energized, switching the system from heat to the air conditioning mode. The outdoor coil becomes the hot, the indoor coil becomes cold, and both - the outdoor and indoor fans shut off. This allows the outdoor coil to melt accumulated ice. When the built-in micro-computer analyzes that all ice have been melted, the heat pump heating system goes back to heating mode.
sanyo-mini-split-defrost.pngA cloud of water vapor may be seen rising over the outdoor unit and a "whoosh" sound can be heard as the refrigerant reverses direction. The entire process usually takes up to 10 minutes (depending on conditions).
How often does the system goes into defrost mode?
Ductless mini-split heat pumps have different ways of determining when to go into defrost. The built-in microcomputer determines outdoor temperature, refrigerant pressures, and several other factors. In colder temperatures the system will go into defrost more often than in warmer.
If a ductless mini split heat pump is severely iced-up in the winter it is possible that it isn't defrosting (though there could be many other causes). Let the manufacturer certified technician check your system

Oct 29, 2011 | Mitsubishi Mr. Slim MXZ30TN Air...

1 Answer

I have 4 ton carrier heat pump / puron. It is a new system been installed about 3 months. Live near Dallas Texas and lately the temp has dropped into the low 40's at night. The heat seems too be working...


The water is from humidity in the outdoor air which has condensed and then frozen to your heat pump outdoor coil. The heat pump will defrost occassionally, depending on how much frost has accumulated to the coil and will then generally drip off the unit and onto the ground. This is normal. To keep the water off the drive way may mean having to move the heat pump to a place where the condensation can run away from the drive area. Or provide some other means of redirecting the water.

Nov 20, 2010 | Air Conditioners

3 Answers

Goodman Heat Pump freezing up


In your climate usually the defrost timer would be on 90. However if you are in an upper elevation and it gets colder then set it at 60. what model unit do you have? Did they change both indoor and outdoor units? I would have to know the model # to tell if the fan should run in defrost. In most cases I would say no.

Jan 23, 2009 | Goodman CLQ36AR49 Air Conditioner

1 Answer

I have Goodman combination heating and cooling outdoor unit PBB series. I am wanting to know if when the heat is on should the fan outside turn or is that only ac


If it's a heatpump, then yes the outdoor fan will turn unless the unit is going in defrost mode. But for the majority of the time a heat pump is operating in heat mode, the outdoor fan is running.

Jan 16, 2009 | Air Conditioners

1 Answer

Vibration when heat only is on inside and out


Is it noisy always when running in heat or only for intermittant periods? Depending on where you live every 45-90 minutes of run time the heat pump goes into a cycle called defrost. The fan on the outdoor unit will shut off. the compressor will continue to run but in actually cool mode. this heats the outdoor coil and allows any frost or ice that is built up on the outdoor coil to melt. The compressor can get pretty loud in this mode and you may actually see steam coming off of the unit. This is normal. However if it is noisy all of time in heat check/clean your coils. If this doesn't remedy it have your refrigerant charge checked by a NATE certified Service Technician. Good luck.

Nov 22, 2008 | Goodman CLQ36AR49 Air Conditioner

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