In the past, oil furnaces, electric baseboard heating, and wood stoves were the most common forms of home heating systems. Now, with rising energy costs, heat pumps have taken centre stage. When you hear someone say the words “heat pump”, they are usually referring to one of three kinds of machines:
|Geothermal heat pumps: These heat pumps take heat from the warm earth and distribute it throughout your home in the form of hot air or hot water. They can reverse this process in the summer time to provide air conditioning.|
|Air Source Heat Pumps: These heat pumps take heat from the outdoor air, and move it into your home through a ducted system. They also provide air conditioning in the summer.|
|Mini Splits: These are air source heat pumps, but without ductwork. These systems connect to a wall mounted air handler and blow hot or cold air into your home from a single point, like your living room wall.|
Of the three types mentioned here, the most efficient, most cost effective, and most comfortable heat pump for your home is a geothermal heat pump.
How Do Geothermal Home Heating Systems Work?
In its simplest form, a heat pump absorbs heat from one location and moves it to another location. Geothermal heat pumps accomplish this by moving heat from the naturally warm earth or ground water into your home. In the summer time this process is reversed, and heat is moved from your home to the ground to cool your home.
This might sound like a far-fetched concept, but people have been using heat pumps for decades to move heat from one place to another. Usually, it’s on a smaller scale, and known by other names. For example, air conditioners, refrigerators, dehumidifiers, and ice-cream coolers are all small-scale heat pumps. All of these devices move heat from one place to another. A geothermal heat pump applies this simple technology, but on a larger scale.
Where Does Geothermal Energy for Homes Come From?
The heat source for geothermal energy is the warm earth beneath our feet. This energy supply source absorbs solar heat and is an inexhaustible source of low grade energy. The heat in the ground is replenished each year by the sun during the normal cycle of our seasons.
The warm earth represents a free, consistent, and renewable source of energy that will never run out, as long as the sun continues to shine. This makes geothermal heat pumps the most eco friendly source of heating and cooling on the planet.
Will A Geothermal Home Heating and Cooling System Work For Me?
Over the years we have developed a wide range of heat pumps to suit almost any style of home. Whether your home needs a renovation to accommodate a geothermal heat pump, or you are planning a new construction with geothermal from the get-go, there is a heat pump that will suit your needs. Geothermal heat pumps typically fall into three categories, each with their own unique method of delivering heat.
|Ducted Systems: Also known as water-to-air heat pumps these heat pumps deliver heating and cooling through forced air ductwork.|
|Radiant In-floor Systems: These are called water-to-water heat pumps. They deliver heat via radiant in-floor heat.|
|Dual Systems: We call these our liquid-to-air & water because they provide heating and cooling through ductwork, and radiant in-floor heat.|
Most homes fall into one of the three categories mentioned above, and we have designed a heat pump to suit each situation.
How Much Will I Save With Geothermal Energy For My Home?
Because heat pumps are just moving heat from one place to another (unlike oil, natural gas, or wood heat which consumes fuel to create heat), they are extremely efficient. In fact, according to the US Environmental Protection Agency, geothermal heat pumps are the most efficient way there is to heat and cool your home on the planet.
The remarkably high efficiency of a geothermal heat pump means big savings on your electricity bill, often 40-70%. The long-term economic benefits of geothermal heat pumps go even further than simply saving on your monthly bills. Geothermal heat pumps are also built to last 20 years or more, which means it’ll be a long time before you have to worry about replacing your heat pump.
How Much Does It Cost to Install a Heat Pump?
The total cost of a heat pump system will vary depending on the combination of the three main sections of a geothermal heat pump installation. These three main components are:
|The Energy Supply Source: This is the heat source. Your heat pump can either harvest heat from well water or a closed loop system of plastic piping buried in the ground.|
|The Heat Pump: This part of the system moves the heat from the energy supply source to the destination: your home.|
|The Energy Distribution System: This is how the heat is distributed throughout your home. You can use ductwork, radiant in-floor heat, or both.|
Because a heat pump installation is a complex process, we recommend you find a dealer and get an estimate on the complete installation. An installer will conduct an on-site visit to determine which energy supply source, heat pump, and energy distribution system is right for your home.