Understanding Geothermal Heating and Cooling
Solar and wind are familiar sources of renewable energy, but there’s another eco-friendly option that lies just beneath the surface of the earth where temperatures remain a consistent 45 to 55 degrees Fahrenheit year round. Geothermal heat pumps, also known as ground-source heat pumps, are designed to tap into this thermal energy to provide heating, cooling and hot water systems for homes and businesses in Middleburg, FL and around the country. The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) ranks geothermal heating and cooling systems as the most energy-efficient option on the market today.
How the Technology Works
All types of heat pumps move heat rather than generate it like fuel-burning furnaces and boilers. With a ground-source heat pump, water or an antifreeze solution is transported through pipes into the ground where it collects heat and moves it into an indoor unit in your home or business for distribution. Most systems reverse operation in the summer, pulling heat from indoors and using the ground as a heat sink. Depending on the amount of land available, the system’s underground pipes can be installed horizontally in shallow trenches or vertically deep into the ground.
Adaptable Solutions for Every Application
Although ground-source heat pumps that connect to ductwork air distribution systems are the most popular option, products are available that deliver air directly into living spaces as well. These ductless systems use individual air handlers installed in separate rooms or zones in your home. Hydronic systems that heat water instead of air are also available. These types of geothermal pumps are most often used for homes with radiant flooring, but when installed with a hydronic high velocity fan coil, they can be used with forced-air systems as well. Hydronic ground source systems can also assist with household water heating.
Is a Geothermal Heating and Cooling System Right for You?
Ground-source heat pumps are up to 70 percent more energy efficient than other types of heating systems and up to 50 percent more efficient than conventional air conditioners. While they cost more to install, they typically pay for themselves in just a few years through savings on monthly energy bills. The federal government also offers a renewable energy tax credit that can cover up to 30 percent of the installation costs. Additional benefits include:
- No combustible fuels that can cause safety concerns
- No noisy outdoor equipment
- Up to 50-year warranties on underground pipes
- Service life of up to 20 years
- Balanced humidity levels
Mike Merritt Heating & Air is proud to offer innovative heating and cooling systems, including a variety of energy-efficient options that help conserve natural resources and protect the environment. If you’d like to learn more information to help you decide if a ground-source heat pump is right for you, contact our experts today to schedule a free consultation.