How to Repair a Heat Pump With Ice-Up Problems

A heat pump is used to separate the heat from a reservoir of liquid and to transfer it to the surrounding area. Occasionally ice builds up around the heat pump. There are many causes for this, one of which involves extremely cold temperatures which prevent the automatic defrost in the pump from working properly.

You can correct this by defrosting the ice-up manually, thereby allowing the pump to resume normal defrosting functions.

  1. Turn off the heat pump and let it cool down completely. Dealing with ice while the pump unit is hot can cause severe damage.

  2. Cover the electrical box and wires on the pump unit with plastic sheeting. The sheeting should cover all of the sensitive parts to prevent water getting into them.

  3. Spray water from a garden hose directly at the iced portions of the pump to thaw it out. Start at the top to allow the water to run down the ice. You can also use warm water to melt the ice.

  4. Move the hose across the ice as each section melts. Use your hands to remove any large pieces of ice from the pump.

  5. Once the ice has been melted, remove the sheeting and run the heat pump as usual. This will help the water dry without freezing again.

  6. Tip

    Adjust your defrost mode to run more frequently during freezing weather to avoid icing up.


    Do not use anything sharp or pointy to remove the ice on the heat pump as the pump is easily damaged.