How to use emergency heat

Emergency heat is a backup heat source that is there in case the heat pumps in a home stop working. Many people see “emergency heat” as one of the settings on their thermostat, but are not sure exactly what it means, or what it should be used for. Emergency heat should only be used when your primary heat source is not working for some reason and you need another way to temporarily heat your house until it can be fixed. Emergency heat is extremely inefficient compared to your heat pumps and therefore will cost a lot more to use. On the other hand, it can save you in a pinch if your primary heating system fails on a cold winter night.

Here is how you activate your emergency heat:

  1. Check your outdoor heat pump unit to see if there are any noticeable signs of damage
  2. If it is broken and not providing heat, go inside to your thermostat
  3. Your thermostat should have a setting labeled “Emergency” or “E”
  4. When you find this setting, manually switch your thermostat so that the emergency heat setting is on
  5. Immediately call Flame Heating and Cooling to send a service technician to fix your heat pump issue
  6. Make sure you turn your emergency heat off once your heat pump is fixed. It will stay on until you manually turn it off.

If you own a Nest Learning Thermostat follow these steps:

  1. Connect your emergency heating wire to the star (*) connector on your Nest thermostat
  2. Let the Nest thermostat know you’ve installed an emergency heat source there
  3. Select “Settings” on the main menu
  4. Select “Equipment”
  5. Select “Emer. Heat”
  6. Confirm that emergency heat should be turned on
  7. Select a setpoint for heating
  8. Call Flame Heating and Cooling to to send a service technician to fix your heat pump issue
  9. Make sure emergency heating is turned off after your heat pump is fixed
  10. If you run into any heat pump issues make sure you contact Flame Heating and Cooling as soon as possible so you can get your heat pump fixed and save money by not having your emergency heat on for an extended period of time. You can contact us at 586-582-1700.

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