Going green is the latest craze sweeping the nation. Part of that concept of a greener Earth is trying to find alternative energy sources. One alternative source of energy with a lot of potential is geothermal energy, which harnesses the natural power of the planet Earth.
Along the same lines, geothermal heat pumps (sometimes referred to as GeoExchange heat pumps, earth-coupled heat pumps, ground-source heat pumps, or water-source heat pumps) use the constant temperature of the Earth as the exchange medium instead of the outside air.
But are these heat pumps any better than the traditional air-source heat pumps we all know and love? This article from EnergySavers.gov argues yes.
Geothermal systems are generally more energy efficient than air-source systems. For example, geothermal pumps reach high efficiencies – 300%-600% – on cold winter nights, while air-source pumps only reach 175%-250% on cool days. While the temperature outside fluctuates up and down, the temperature below the Earth’s surface remains relatively constant. Depending on latitude, ground temperatures range from 45°F (7°C) to 75°F (21°C).
As with any heat pump, geothermal heat pumps, also known as GHPs, are able to heat, cool, and if properly equipped, supply the house with hot water. Unlike other heat pumps, however, GHPs are typically quieter, last longer, and need little maintenance. When you couple those advantages with the fact that geothermal heat pumps do not rely on the ever changing outside air to function, you can clearly see why GHPs are quickly gaining popularity.
There are approximately 50,000 geothermal heat pumps installed in the United States each year.
While installation of one of these pumps costs several times more than that of an air-source system, the additional costs are returned to you, over time, in the form of energy savings. And when you consider that geothermal heat pumps are estimated to last 25 years for the inside components and 50+ years for the ground loop, you can see why a GHP is a wise investment.
If you have any questions, contact Fresh Air Concepts by calling 1-800-708-4FAC or click here today!