A geothermal system can be a cost-friendly heating and cooling option, keeping your home at a comfortable temperature year round. Geothermal systems, also called ground source heating and cooling, manage temperatures in a home by circulating water through looped, underground piping. This approach results in lower monthly energy costs and no fuels are burned in the process. These systems can operate at 450% efficiency. Both the U.S. Department of Energy and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency have positive reports on the environmental friendliness and energy efficiency of geothermal HVAC systems.
How Does Geothermal Heat and Cool?
Geothermal systems extract heat deep within the earth, using a compression system to heat and cool your home year round. A geothermal system is essentially a closed loop of pipes that are buried underground and filled with a non-toxic solution. This loop can be installed vertically or horizontally, depending on the property’s size and topographical features. A water source can even be part of the picture. The entire system is then powered by a low-wattage pump.
The pump circulates the water encased in the pipes, taking advantage of the fairly consistent temperatures a few feet down in the ground. While temperatures can widely vary from season to season in different parts of the world, they usually hold at an average temperature underground. Surface weather patterns don’t have a direct effect when you go a number of feet below the surface. If an average temperature is maintained below the earth’s surface, temperatures will contrast with those on the surface. It will be it will be warmer underground in the cold winter and cooler underground in the warm summer months. A geothermal HVAC system takes advantage of this variant. The liquid flowing through the pipes absorbs heat from the ground in winter and transfers it to the indoor HVAC unit, which in turn sends warm air into the home. In the summer the process is reversed with heat from the home being transferred out through the pipes and to the cooler earth below. Mirriam-Webster defines the term “geothermal” as: “of, relating to, or utilizing the heat of the earth’s interior.” This is exactly what is occurring as heat is being transferred to and from the ground via the installed loop.
Maximum Energy Efficiency, Minimum Expense
Using the earth as a condenser, the system exchanges heat and coolness with the ground as water is pumped through the system. Safe non-ozone refrigerant generated by the system heats and cools your home. According to the EPA (Environmental Protection Agency), a geothermal system can save a Chester County, Delaware County and Montgomery County area homeowner 40-70% on heating costs and 30-50% on cooling costs.
Geothermal Heating and Cooling Installation
Since the closed loop that powers your geothermal system is installed in the ground, there are a number of installation options available. There are home and property specifics that need to be considered when deciding what geothermal system installation will be most effective. Different homes use energy differently, with unique heating and cooling needs. Both the size of the system and the design of the loop field need to be considered. If either are too small or too large, problems or lack of efficiency are likely to become a frustration. To determine if a geothermal system is an appropriate option for your home, schedule a site assessment with a MoreVent specialist.
A Few Benefits of Geothermal Heating and Air Conditioning Systems
- No large machinery or sound outside to interrupt the home’s occupants or its neighbors.
- Systems are energy efficient, with noticeably lower monthly energy costs.
- If a geothermal system is installed properly it can last for many years and does not normally require a great deal of maintenance.
- A large property is not always a requirement for a geothermal loop field. Many options are available for the buried pipes, both horizontal and vertical.
- Geothermal HVAC systems do not have a direct negative impact on the environment.
Whether you are in the research phase, deciding whether ground source heating and cooling is the way to go, or ready to design a system to best meet your needs; a MoreVent specialist is ready to help you.