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The Heat Is On...Or Is It?: Top Signs It’s Time To Replace Your Heat Pump

When it comes to versatility and efficiency, nothing quite compares to heat pumps. Not only do they offer longer lifespans than other HVAC systems, but they are also incredibly energy efficient — not to mention the fact that they can both heat and cool your home. Unfortunately, your heat pump won't last forever, and eventually, you’ll need to replace it. But how do you know when it’s time to replace your heat pump?

At Cornerstone Services, we want you to be comfortable throughout the entire year, and with a heat pump, you can do just that — if it's working properly. However, if your heat pump is acting up, it may be signs of a much larger problem. If you’re wondering if it’s time to replace your home’s heat pump, look for these signs:


One of the biggest considerations when it comes to deciding whether it needs to be replaced is its age. While some heat pumps can last as long as 20-25 years, the most frequent repairs occur during the last 3-5 years of its life. To avoid your heat pump being a burden on you and your home as it ages, consider reevaluating its condition after 15 years.

Diminished Air Flow

This is one of the first symptoms you’ll notice when it comes to heat pump malfunction. While diminished air flow could be due to clogged filters or faulty ductwork, it can also be a telltale sign it’s time to replace your heat pump.

Not Blowing Cold or Hot Air

Another sign your heat pump is malfunctioning is if the air it’s blowing isn’t cold (or hot) enough. By exhibiting a reduction in cooling or heating capacity, it could be a symptom of thermostat issues or leaking refrigerant; however, not blowing cold or warm air can also signal a problem with the unit’s compressor, which could indicate a replacement heat pump is needed.

Strange Sounds or Unusual Smells

Heat pump systems are designed to operate quickly; if you hear grinding, screeching, clicking, or any other strange or loud sounds, you should turn off the system immediately and contact one of our technicians. Excessive noise could be a sign that your heat pump unit is losing its capability of functioning properly, which could necessitate a replacement.

Similarly, if you detect unusual smells emanating from the unit, you shouldn’t ignore them. Scents of burning, sulfur, mildew, or mold could indicate anything from excess moisture and the presence of bacteria to problems with the motor or wiring. If you experience any of these, consult with a professional from Cornerstone Services because it could be a sign it’s time to replace your heat pump.

A Significant Increase in Energy Bills

Heat pumps aren’t just versatile because they can work as both an air conditioning unit and heating unit; they’re also known for their high efficiency and ability to save homeowners money on energy costs. However, if you notice an unexpected increase in your energy bill, it may be an indication that your system is failing. While maintenance may be able to make your system somewhat better, eventually replacing your heat pump will be the only way to keep your energy costs low.

Short Cycling

If your heat pump is constantly short-cycling (turning on then shutting down briefly before restarting again), it could be a symptom that there is an issue with the thermostat or a problem with the computer or control board. However, depending on the circumstances, it could be a sign it’s no longer suitable for your home, and it needs to be replaced.

Still Not Sure if it’s Time to Replace Your Heat Pump? Contact Us for a Consultation!

If you’ve noticed any of these signs it’s time to replace your heat pump, reach out to our team of experienced heating and air technicians. We can assess your system, discuss your needs, and offer heat pump installation and repair solutions that are within your budget. For more information on any of our other reliable services in NH, like plumbing or air duct cleaning, contact us today.


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