Does the underground pipe system really work in geothermal?
For some people just getting interested in geothermal, how well it can condition a home can almost seem like a miracle. It is natural that some are skeptical. Actually, the technology and practice of using geothermal heat pumps has been around for quite a long time and has a great track record.
So, does it really work? Yes, and amazingly well. The EPA has proclaimed these systems the most efficient and eco-friendly home conditioning systems around today. If further proof is needed, ask folks who have been using a geo heat pump how cost-effective and comfortable they are. My company installs these systems, and we get calls and letters all the time from happy customers who just can't quite believe how much their energy bills have shrunk.
Just how does the geo heat pump and ground loop provide all these benefits? It all begins with harnessing the grounds constant 55 degree temperature. Wells are dug and pipes inserted to form an underground loop system that runs into your home and through the indoor unit. These loops contain a liquid that is pumped through the pipes, carrying heat either into or away from your home.
In cold weather, the liquid in the loop absorbs the earth's heat which flows to the indoor heat pump. The unit extracts the heat and the blower distributes it into the duct system and through your home. The liquid is now cooler, but it circulates back into the ground loops to start the heating cycle again.
In warm weather, the heat pump works in reverse. It actually removes heat from your home and into the liquid in the loops. The liquid is then pumped underground where its heat is dispersed into the cooler earth. The result is completely cool air distributed by the heat pump into your home as the loop continues to remove heat from your living areas.
Geo heat pumps are based on relatively easy to understand science. Don't be intimidated by them. Once you do some research and learn more, I bet you will want one in your home.
This expert insight brought to you by Russ Scott, general manager of Scott-Lee Heating Co. and an Enertech Global LLC geothermal dealer.
Russ Scott Russ Scott has worked for more than 16 years at Scott-Lee Heating Co., and is now the general manager of the business his father co-founded. He received business and creative writing degrees from St. Louis University, is on the S.M.A.C.N.A. - St. Louis Board of Directors, is a Contractor Rep on the Local 36 Apprentice Committee and is involved with the local H.B.A. and A.C.C.A. chapters. Russ enjoys sharing his knowledge of all high-efficient HVAC systems, especially geothermal heat pumps.