What You Need To Know About Residential Closed-Loop Geothermal Heat Pump Systems

Posted on: 14 July 2019

If you've heard about residential geothermal heat pump systems but don't understand exactly how they work, then you are not alone. Many homeowners have heard of geothermal but have no idea how it works.

While geothermal systems sound like new technology, in reality, people have been harnessing the heating and cooling properties of the earth for millennia. 

Today's geothermal systems are economical and earth-friendly, and should always be considered when installing a new HVAC system in a home. 

The Process of Earth-Coupling

Geothermal systems rely on the process of earth-coupling. They couple together your home's HVAC system with the natural heating and cooling of the earth.

When it's cold outside, the heat stored in the earth is brought up into the house. Alternatively, when it is hot outside, the warm air from your home is pushed back down into the earth to be replaced by cooler air.

Closed-Loop Geothermal Systems

Closed-loop geothermal heat pump systems are the most common type used in residential applications. They can be installed on both rural and urban properties.

As their name implies, closed-loop systems rely on either horizontal or vertical loops of anti-freeze-filled tubing placed into the earth. The tubing is connected to a compressor bearing on the surface. The bearing is then connected into your furnace to couple the two together.

Summer Hot Water Heating

In addition to their great operating efficiency, residential geothermal systems also have the added bonus of being able to take the hot air from your home during the summer and push it into your hot water heater. This heats the water without having to use electricity or gas and will save you a lot of money. 

Secondary Heat Sources in Cold Climates

One drawback to geothermal heat pump systems is seen when they are installed in a home located in an extremely cold climate.

Once the outdoor temperature drops below freezing, the system struggles to bring up enough heat to keep most homes warm enough. In this instance, a secondary heat source is required. 

Typically, heat pump systems installed in cold areas will have an electric backup or the home will have a fireplace or wood stove to use on excessively cold days.

For Additional Information

If you are interested in a geothermal heat pump system for your home, then you should contact a local geothermal contractor. This is actually a really great time to reach out because many utility companies are offering rebates and tax authorities are offering tax incentives for switching to geothermal systems.