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How To Protect The Outdoor Heating Pump

Heat pumps are typically used in regions with mild climates where there are winters, but the temperatures are not as harsh as in northern climates. Heat pumps need protection to operate properly and keep the house warm. Understanding how to protect the outdoor heat pump is crucial for having an efficient heating system.


Build a Roof

Snow buildup is a problem for heat pumps. When snow accumulates around and on top of the heat pump, clear it away.


However, we do not recommend covering it completely. The pump works by drawing in outside air, heating it, and then pumping it into your home. If you cover it, the pump won’t be able to intake air.


Instead, build a roof over the heat pump. Keep in mind that there should be 18-24 inches of space around the heat pump for it to work properly. When the roof is constructed correctly, and enough space is left for the pump, it can alleviate the snow issue.


heat pump installation

Check the Defrost Cycle

Heat pumps have a defrost cycle to prevent icing. If you have annual maintenance checks with HVAC professionals, your defrost cycle should work well. If you notice icing during winter, call for service. Ice buildup on the heat pump can cause damage and eventually lead to the pump stopping.


Create Wind Barriers

Creating wind barriers helps the heat pump operate efficiently. Wind can cause the following issues:

Lower fan efficiency
Lower fan reliability
Fan damage
Ice accumulation
Unstable indoor temperatures


Form wind barriers by planting hedges and shrubs in front of the pump. Keep the barrier 18-24 inches away from the heat pump to improve efficiency.



Elevate the heat pump to avoid contact with snow and heavy rain. Elevation also aids in proper drainage for the heat pump.


Raise the heat pump at least six inches off the ground (higher if heavy snow is expected). You can use stands or concrete blocks to achieve this.


Redirect Drainage

When the drainage directs melted snow and raindrops onto the heat pump, it can enter the coils and freeze, causing problems. This situation can be easily solved by changing the flow direction of the drainage. Check the drainage near the heat pump and reposition the water droplets.


We hope our guide on how to protect outdoor heat pumps is helpful as the colder months approach. Schedule annual maintenance checks for maximum efficiency and be attentive to any issues during that time.


At Shenling, we offer ductless split systems to meet all your heating and cooling needs. We also provide other system options. Browse our convenient online store or contact us for more information.

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