Is Geothermal a Practical HVAC Choice
Air temperatures rise and fall with the seasons, but beneath the surface of the earth, the temperature of the soil hovers around 50 degrees Fahrenheit throughout the year. Geothermal HVAC systems are electrically powered heat pumps that use underground pipes filled with fluid to transfer heat between the earth and your home. They’re versatile products that are adaptable to a broad array of HVAC applications, from forced-air systems to radiant flooring. Many homeowners, however, have questions about their practicality. Read on to learn why ground-source systems are lauded as functional heating and cooling solutions by energy experts and consumer advocates alike.
How Do Geothermal HVAC Systems Work?
Geothermal heat pumps (GHPs) move heat rather than generate it. They use a refrigerant solution to extract heat from one location and move it to another, much as your refrigerator does 24 hours a day. As the molecules in the refrigerant expand, the liquid evaporates into a gas, drawing heat from the surrounding air. When the molecules are compressed, the refrigerant returns to a heated liquid. Heat pumps use this refrigerant cycle to heat and cool your home. In the winter, the pump collects heat from the ground and condenses it, making it hot enough to heat your entire home. During the summer, GHPs pull heat from the air inside and use the earth as a heat sink.
How Efficient Are They?
The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) reports that GHPs are currently the most energy efficient HVAC systems available in the market. They’re up to 70 percent more efficient than conventional heating systems and up to 50 percent more efficient than traditional air conditioning systems. GHPs cost significantly more to install than other systems, but their high efficiency means that you’ll recoup your upfront costs quickly through savings on monthly energy bills.
Depending on your specific location and the type of installation, you can expect to recover initial costs in three to 10 years. Green energy HVAC systems like ground-source pumps also qualify for the federal renewable energy tax credit, which covers up to 30 percent of the total installation costs. Because the underground loops of pipe can last 50 years or more, savings can be enjoyed for generations to come.
How Practical Are They?
Whatever your heating or cooling need, you’ll find the perfect solution in our collection of high efficiency geothermal heat pumps. Some models are engineered as forced-air heating and cooling systems while others are designed to work in combination with a conventional furnace. Water-to-water systems can provide heat for radiant and hydronic heating systems and can augment your domestic hot water needs as well. There are different installation options available too. The underground pipes can be buried vertically in deep bore holes or can be installed in a shallow horizontal configuration.
Ground-source HVAC systems are growing in popularity throughout Orange Park, FL, and the surrounding communities. At Mike Merritt Heating & Air Conditioning, we’re proud to be a leader in green-energy HVAC installations. Our technicians have the know-how to maintain and service GHPs as well. To learn more or to schedule a free consultation, contact our expert team of specialists today.