The Question: What Is Emergency Heat on Thermostat?

Are you familiar with “emergency heat on thermostat?” Are you familiar with a thermostat setting that’s labeled simply as “EM heat?” If you’re like many people, you have no idea what emergency heat is. Getting to the bottom of emergency heat and all that it entails, however, may actually help you at some point.

A Look at Emergency Heat

Standard thermostats are equipped with settings that are called “emergency heat.” People often think that this setting is designed to supply heat in times of severely low temperatures. That isn’t correct, though. “EM” is short for “emergency.” If your residential heating ceases to work for whatever reason, EM heat is in place to make up for it.

Heat pumps that are located in northern regions have to work in conjunction with supporting heating channels. Thermostats and systems decide when supplemental heating switches on in all sorts of manners. One consistent thing is that this heating switches on automatically.

Emergency heat, true to its name, is designed exclusively for emergencies. If you use EM heat, that means that there is a problem with your heat pump or main heat source. If your home is oddly chilly, you may discover a fallen powerline that has done a number on your heat pump. This may be a suitable “opportunity” to promptly turn on your emergency heat setting.

The Ins and Outs of Emergency Heat

Once you turn on emergency heat, you’ll see a red indicator light. This light will remain on until you cease emergency heat use. The point of the light is to alert you that you’re in an emergency situation.

It’s critical to understand that operating emergency heat can be costly for people who use all-electric heat pumps. Operating an electric heat pump via emergency heat can increase your costs quickly. You should only use emergency heat while you’re waiting for professional repair service. You should never give in to the temptation to turn on EM heat simply because you feel much chillier than usual. If you make that big mistake, you’ll have to take care of outrageous energy expenses.

If you just hit a simple thermostat button, you can transfer to emergency heat without issue. Doing this enables your heating system to basically ignore the normal heating technique. It enables it to depend solely on the previously mentioned supplemental heating option.

What else makes using EM heat an impractical idea for people who have main heating systems that are in fine working order? If you use emergency heat when it isn’t necessary at all, that will actually substantially restrict the level of heat your system is able to manufacture.

Certain thermostats come with “Aux heat” systems. These aren’t EM heat “substitutes” by any stretch of the imagination. That’s because they’re basically identical. If you go forward with Aux heat use, you’ll trigger your backup heating system to kick in. You’ll switch the main one off at the same exact time as well.

It’s no surprise that EM heat doesn’t always work perfectly. If your heat is on and you still notice frigid air coming out of the vents, then that may be an indication that something is amiss with your EM heat setting. Despite that, there are definite exceptions. Cold air sometimes has absolutely nothing to do with EM heat difficulties. Perhaps the temperature outdoors is brutally cold. If outdoor temperatures are unbearable, your emergency heat and heat pump may be functioning without issue. They just may not be able to heat your living space adequately as the result of the unforgiving temperatures outside.

If you genuinely think that your EM heating is out of order, there may be a number of factors behind the issue. Your heater may not have sufficient refrigerant. A branch from a tree may have collapsed and harmed your unit outside considerably. The coils in your unit outside could have frozen as well. If you have any questions whatsoever about the functioning of your EM heat setting, you should speak with a reputable and experienced heating system technician. This professional will be able to take care of the matter and replace or fix any and all faulty components.

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