Heat pump ?

Ok question on heat pumps. Dose the outside unit always run when the inside unit is on. I had a home inspection were the outside unit never came on. This is a heat pump with no oil or gas back up. Every thing tested good on inside unit temp differential is fine also.

It could have been on emergency heat, what was the outside temp. did you look at the thermostat?

yes I looked at the thermostat it was not on emergency heat although the owner said he just replace it. The outside temps were in the low 30s


The outside unit (compressor/condenser) will be “on” anytime the heat pump is in the heating or cooling mode unless the furnace (air handler) is in the emergency/electric strip heat mode. It can go to the emergency mode by switching the thermostat or by an automatic system when the OAT gets too low to allow the heat pump to deliver warm enough air.

I would double check and make sure thermostat is for Heat Pump

Robert and James thanks for the help. I was thinking it had something to do with the thermostat but wanted to make sure I was correct about both units running and I was not missing anything.

Thermostat should have two heat settings: “heat” and “em-heat”. He may have purchased the wrong one. I have a heat pump, and love it. My gas bills are 50% under any one else in my family. When in reg “heat” setting, the outside A/C coil runs along with the furnace blower. In “em-heat” setting the furnace gas/electric back-up should operate. When it gets below 20 degrees here, I switch it over to “em-heat” setting to save wear on the outside coil. At low outside temps, the outside coil almost runs constantly. Some thermostats/units do this automatically.