There is no doubt that installing a geothermal heat pump is an environmentally friendly method to heat and cool your home, including water. Instead of relying on oil, geothermal generates warm or cold air in your home through pipes buried in the ground. This process operates in a slightly different way than your standard HVAC system. An electrically powered heat pump cycles ground water through a loop of pipes buried deep beneath your home. During the summer, the ground water is naturally colder than the ambient air in your home, in our area it is around 55 degrees Fahrenheit. The ground water is then passed through a heat exchanger, similar to a radiator, which allows it to pull heat from the air in your home and transfer that it back into the ground as the water is drained. During the winter, this process in reverse. The ground water during that time of the year is naturally warmer than the cold winter air which allows it to transfer warmth through the heat exchange. Similar to an AC unit but in reverse.
It is a little bit trickier when it comes to financial benefits. Yes, geothermal will save you quite a bit on your heating and cooling costs. However, as with most new technologies, there is a relatively high initial investment cost to get the system in place. Therefore, it makes sense to think about your medium to long-term plans. Do you plan to move to a different home within the next year or two or are you planning to stay in your home for a longer period? The longer you can utilize the system, the more return you will see on your investment. We recommend getting a quote for the system and to estimate how much money it would save you per year. This should also include future expenses for your current system’s maintenance, as geothermal barely requires any maintenance throughout its 25-50 year life span. Doug’s can certainly help you with figuring out whether this system makes financial sense for you if you are not perfectly certain about its implications.
Beyond the benefits listed above, there are additional benefits to geothermal. They might not always provide a direct monetary benefit, but they improve your quality of life:
- Sound: geothermal is much quieter than most other cooling systems. You can often compare it to a refrigerator. This is a relevant factor for individuals with sleeping issues.
- Reliability: geothermal is powered by nature, so you can expect it to work independent from any traditional external risk factors.
- Sustainability: we never know how fuel and electricity prices will rise through the years, so geothermal eliminates most utility bill fluctuations.
- Real Estate: even if you decide to move shortly after installing a heat pump, the investment isn’t lost. This system is an upgrade to your building and will be reflected by your properties’ value.
Learn more about geothermal below and please don’t hesitate to contact Doug’s geothermal experts at 309-764-2500.
- Geothermal Heat Pumps, Energy.gov
- 5 Things to Know about a Geothermal Heat Pump, family handyman
- Geothermal Heat Pumps, U.S. Energy Information Administration