Geothermal Heat Pump

Savings From the Ground Up
By now you may have heard of a geothermal heat pump. How does it differ from a standard heat pump and why is it becoming more popular?

Well, you may know that several feet underneath the surface of the earth, the ground stays at a relatively steady temperature year round. Taking advantage of this fact makes perfect sense - a geothermal system can transfer heat from the ground to your home (by employing a system of piping), or from your home back to the ground - using very little electricity.

You may have also heard that volcanic activity creates a lot of geothermal energy. But did you know that your area doesn't have to have active volcanoes to offer geothermal heat pumps?

Is Geothermal HVAC
Available In My Area?

The best way for you to answer this question is to contact your LOCAL ELECTRIC CO-OP before proceeding with a renewable energy project. Ask them for the best heating and cooling options, and if geothermal heating systems are available for your consideration. You may also contact local heat pump installation companies to inquire about the types they offer.

Your electric company may offer special rates to customers who install these systems, and in some cases, may PAY to have geothermal HVAC installed and then lease it to the customer!

Geothermal Energy Savings

Savings when using a geothermal heating system may range from 30 - 70%. Geothermal energy can also pull double or even triple duty by using it for a radiant floor system and even for domestic hot water use!

According to a website discussing the Water Furnace geothermal system, it is 3-4 times more effective than the most efficient standard system.

A well insulated 2000 square foot home would require about a 3 ton system with 1500 - 1800 feet of pipe.

Geothermal energy provides 80 - 100% of the design heating load. As with conventional systems, don't use an over sized unit - it can cause dehumidifying problems in the cooling mode.

As far as start up costs are concerned, here's a way to look at it: If a geothermal heat pump is installed in a new home, the monthly savings in operating costs will usually offset any additional monthly cost incurred on your mortgage payment. Since the mortgage interest costs are tax deductible, you will most likely have a resulting immediate positive cash flow benefit.

Geothermal Heat Pump Benefits

Although a geothermal heat pump may use conventional ductwork like a typical heat pump, it does have numerous other benefits.

A Geothermal System is:

  • Efficient

    A New York family claims the use of a 70% smaller system using geothermal heat and photovoltaic (solar) cells on their roof to generate electricity. When I last read their update, they have had NO electricity bills since 2005! In fact, they re-sell their excess electricity back to the power company!

  • Non - polluting
    A truly "green" HVAC system

  • Long life span
    These systems last much longer than conventional heating systems.

  • Non-toxic fluids used

  • May be used for residential hot water heating

  • May be used for radiant floor heating
    This type of heating is comfortable, non drying, and much better for cutting down on dust and allergies as compared to forced air.

Related Pages

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