The Basic Features and Functions of a Geothermal Heat Pump

One of the most unexpected things about a geothermal heating and cooling system is that it has almost no moving parts. There’s just that much less that can break down– that much less needing maintenance. And that alone plays a major role in cutting the overall energy costs of Greenville homeowners who’ve gone geothermal.

 

Still, the system isn’t totally devoid of moving parts. the bulk of them are found in its most conspicuous component, too: the geothermal heat pump.

This is the system’s workhorse. Its purpose is to transfer heat. And it transfers heat either from the ground into your house or from your house into the ground, depending on seasonal temperatures. That being the case, it’s a furnace and an air conditioner combined in one compact package.

Water – or an antifreeze solution – is the medium by which the heat pump transfers heat. This liquid courses through pipe loops installed underground and secured to the heat pump, which is positioned above ground. During heating season the liquid draws heat from the ground, the heat pump draws the warm liquid up into refrigerant coils, and the heat is then is conveyed throughout a home by either a forced air or a hydronic system. During cooling season the exact opposite happens: the pump draws heat from your home and transfers it to the ground by way of those same buried loops. Oh, and as an extra perk, lots of geothermal systems also produce domestic hot water.

The crucial difference between a geothermal heat pump and a typical furnace is that a heat pump doesn’t ignite fuel to generate heat. Rather, it takes heat that’s already present and just moves it around. That naturally makes it a much more efficient heating and cooling system. Bear this in mind, too: underground temperatures almost always remain at around 50º F through the year. Result? A geothermal heating and cooling system requires substantially less energy to cool your home than standard air conditioners.

So … is a geothermal system the answer for your Greenville home? Talk with this region’s geothermal pros, the cordial people at BARGA Heating, Air Conditioning & Refrigeration, Inc..