How does geothermal work?

A geothermal heat pump system consists of three components: the heat pump unit; the duct work; and the ground source exchanger. The ground source exchanger is a system of pipes called the loop, which is buried in the ground near the home. A fluid (a mixture of water and antifreeze) circulates through the pipes to extract or reject heat within the ground.

In the summer the heat pump removes heat from the home and rejects it into the ground.  In the winter the reverse happens, and the heat from the ground is transferred into the home.  If a desuperheater is installed in the system it will provide a free source of hot water during the summer months for the home instead of rejecting the heat from the home into the ground.

By using the constant temperature of the ground it allows the geothermal systems to be more efficient than traditional systems because the system has less work to do to achieve its set temperature thereby saving you money. A fossil fuel furnace may be 80% to 95% efficient, traditional heat pumps range from 200% to 300%, while a geothermal heat pump is 450% efficient.  Also, this does not take into account the benefit of the free hot water during the summer months that you get from geothermal.

A Maeser Home Comfort Consultant can give you all the details on a geothermal system for your new or existing home. View this geothermal video to learn more about how you can use the earth’s constant temperature to heat or cool your home.

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