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Heat is on but blowing cold air

Realizing that your heat is on but blowing cold air is a rude shock. Your home should be a haven. It should be comfortable. And it should be warm during winter. Yet, there you are, wrapped in a blanket and shivering, and the comfort system you depend on isn’t helping matters.

That’s why knowledge is so important. And it can be hard to know the difference between a problem and normal system behavior. At Dale’s Heating and Air, we’d like to equip you with 4 ques tions to ask when your heat is on but blowing cold air.


Ask These 4 Questions If Your Heat Is On but Blowing Cold Air


Before you call for heater repair service, ask these questions. They will help you determine if you need to call one of our expert heating and air service techs.


1. Is the Heat Pump Defrosting?


Normally, your heat pump should start up at regular intervals. Many are set to activate once per hour. This startup/shutdown process helps keep ice from building up on the unit. During that cycle, cold air will actually blow through your vents. When this happens, don’t confuse it with a system malfunction. It’s just part of normal heater defrosting. Shortly after defrosting is done, warm air should take the cold air’s place.

Just Call Dale’s if: your heater continues to blow cold air. You’ll need a licensed and insured heating and cooling service to check your system’s health. We can restore comfort to your home.


2. Is the Heat Pump Frozen?


When your heat is on but blowing cold air, check for a frozen heat pump. At sub-freezing temperatures, especially in the teens, heat pumps are vulnerable to freezing. Ice may even form on top. Your first step is to remove the ice. That may have good results, with the system resuming normal operation. Wait for a bit after you’ve removed the ice to make sure everything is back to normal.

Just Call Dale’s if: removing the ice doesn’t change anything. One of our qualified technicians will diagnose the problem and get your heater back up and running.


3. Is the Air Actually Cold?


Unless you’re sick, your body temperature is slightly north of 98°. You’ll never heat the air in your home to that temperature. In fact, the air from your vents may feel cool on your skin. And, all the while, your heating system is pushing out 80° air. Don’t call for heater repairs until you’ve checked your thermostat! Once you know the true temperature, you’ll know if your system needs a checkup.

Just Call Dale’s if: your home is significantly cooler than the set heating temperature.


4. Is the Heat Pump Compressor Broken?


A broken compressor may be the problem when your heat is on but blowing cold air. Long story short, your heat pump doesn’t actually heat the air. Instead, it removes heat from the outside air and sends it into your home. The refrigerant does the heat removal. However, in summer, it does the inverse: removes heat from your home’s air and sends it outside. And the compressor circulates the refrigerant.

That’s why your compressor is so important. And, when this part breaks, the game’s over – at least until you replace the compressor. If the compressor stops circulating the heater’s coolant, your comfort system won’t create warm air.

Just Call Dale’s if: your heat pump stops running, stops producing heat, or makes screeching sounds. One of our heat pump experts will find out the cause right away.



If your heat is on but blowing cold air and needs repair, Just Call Dale’s at (423) 509-8787 or contact us online today. We’ll get you comfortable at home again.

And, if it is time to replace your heat pump, make sure to replace it right. Choose a new unit that can efficiently maintain a higher level of comfort than the old one. Dale’s is a local Carrier expert. We’ll help you learn what kind of system will be best for your home. You can depend on us to work for your comfort.