How Do Geothermal Heating And Cooling Systems Work?
Nowadays, more homeowners are working their way into making their homes greener and eco-friendlier. Some are trying to maintain a paperless and plastic-free household, while others are recycling their waste to reduce their carbon footprint. But other than your waste, your HVAC system is another factor in your house that can harm the environment. Did you know that your home’s HVAC system is among the main contributors to climate change?
Most American households use HVAC systems to heat or cool their homes, which translates to increased production of carbon emissions. According to resources, HVAC systems are responsible for over 3.9% of global greenhouse gas emissions. One way to reduce your home’s carbon footprint is to switch your conventional HVAC system with a geothermal HVAC system.
What Is Geothermal Heating And Cooling System (Geothermal HVAC)?
A geothermal HVAC system is an environmentally-friendly and energy-efficient HVAC system that maximizes the natural ground temperature to provide heat or cool temperatures to houses.
How Does It Work?
A furnace burns fuel to produce heat, while a geothermal heating system exchanges heat between the ground and the air to keep your home warm. The temperature beneath the ground is constantly around 50 to 60 degrees, making it a good source of heat. Meanwhile, a geothermal cooling system absorbs heat from your home, similar to how an air conditioner works. But instead of releasing heat into the air, the geothermal cooling system uses the natural ground as its heat sink.
This is among the main benefits of a geothermal system. That’s because instead of releasing endless carbon emissions when burning fuel (for heating) or absorbing heat (for cooling), it uses the Earth’s natural surface as a source of heat and, at the same time, a heat accumulator.
What Are The Parts Of A Geothermal Heating And Cooling System?
The components that construct the system and their function are below to help you further understand how geothermal heating and cooling system works.
- Geothermal Loop
Also known as an earth loop or ground loop, the geothermal loop is a network of buried piping. It can be installed vertically, horizontally, or coiled and be configured as open or closed. Open loop geothermal system uses a nearby body of water as a heat source and sink, using water as a conductor for heat transfer. Meanwhile, a closed-loop geothermal system is a loop of pipes containing water or water mixture and antifreeze used for heat transfer.
Because of its complexity and specialized technicality, installing your own geothermal HVAC will never be a Do-It-Yourself project. You’ll need to hire a professional geothermal HVAC installer with the knowledge, skill, and equipment to install the geothermal loop and piping properly.
- Geothermal Heat Pump
This is the central hub for the machine, which houses the system’s essential components, like the compressor and heat exchanger. The heat pump transfers the water (water mixture) through the geothermal loop, providing heat through the system. The geothermal heat pump can be connected to any loop configuration to provide cool or heat to your home.
- Geothermal Distribution System
The distribution system transfers cold or hot air into your home. Two distribution systems configurations are responsible for providing your home’s cooling and heating needs.
The first configuration is the forced-air system. This type of distribution system uses an air handler and ductwork to transfer cool air into the building. The second configuration is the water-to-water system. The pipes containing the liquid will run through your flooring or walls and transfer heat. The liquid it carries comes from the geothermal loop connected to the main geothermal heat pump.
Geothermal Heating And Cooling System: What Are The Benefits?
Now that you have the basics of how geothermal heating and cooling works, here are the following benefits of geothermal HVAC and why it’s a better option than other HVAC options:
Because geothermal HVAC doesn’t consume or burn fuel, it doesn’t produce carbon emissions which are harmful to the environment. This is the best option for environmentally conscious homeowners who want to minimize their home’s carbon footprint as much as possible.
Unlike the other HVAC options that use non-renewable energy, geothermal HVAC uses renewable resources, which means you can use it for a lifetime. Using renewable energy also means your geothermal system won’t be contributing to the current climate crisis.
- Geothermal Equipment Has A Longer Lifespan
Geothermal heating and cooling systems have way longer lifespans than the other HVAC options. The geothermal heat pumps can last 12 to 15 years when properly maintained. Meanwhile, the geothermal loop can last for over 50 years because it’s well-protected within the Earth’s ground, making it less susceptible to damage.
- Efficiency In Heating And Cooling
Despite its significant difference from other HVAC options, the geothermal system is still highly efficient in providing your home’s heating and cooling needs. All its key components play an essential role in providing sustainable heating and cooling solutions.
- Lower Operating Costs
Initially, the installation costs of a geothermal HVAC system are several times higher than the other HVAC options. But on a good note, a geothermal system is much more affordable as it doesn’t use much electricity or burn fuels, helping you save on operating costs in the long run.
Interested In Switching To Geothermal HVAC?
Overall, the geothermal heating and cooling system can tremendously impact the environment. It’s a clean and energy-efficient resource you should consider when heating or cooling one’s home or other buildings. With their longer lifespan and usage of renewable resources, the geothermal heating and cooling system can be an excellent investment for your home. So, if you wish to switch to geothermal HVAC, contact a professional geothermal HVAC installer and request an appointment.