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Geothermal Heat Pumps: Cost Effective And Environmentally Sound

By Ryan McCall

A Geothermal Heat Pump (GHP)is a device that extracts heat from beneath the ground. It functions based on the fact that heat will flow from higher temperature materials to lower temperature materials by conduction or by convection (air currents). Geothermal pumps absorb energy from the ground or bodies of water to provide space and water heating. This works because the earth absorbs about 50% of the sun’s energy that reaches the surface of the planet.

Ground source heating and cooling will give great comfort and be cost-effective with environmentally-friendly technology which uses our planet’s ability to store energy as heat. Geothermal heat pump systems move the heat from Earth or from water into buildings, or from buildings right back into Earth. A little bit of electricity is employed for operating fans, pumps, controls, and a little compressor.

Geothermal heat pumps (GHPs) are among the most efficient and comfortable heating and cooling technologies currently available for homes and other buildings. These ground-source heat pumps use the natural heat storage capacity of the earth or ground water to provide energy efficient heating and cooling. Most GHPs are installed with “Desuperheaters” which collect waste heat from the compressor and use it to pre-heat domestic hot water for free. This is a new money-saving technology for homes.

Even though the cost of installation of a geothermal system can be several times that of traditional heating and cooling system, the additional costs are returned in energy savings in 5 to 10 years. The life of such a system is estimated at 25 years for the interior components and 50 or more years for the ground loop piping. Approximately 50,000 geothermal heating systems are installed in the US each year. Geothermal heat pumps are practical in most areas. They can use the Earth as a heat source in the winter and a heat sink in the summer.

Many newer housing systems come with desuperheaters which take out warm air from the heat pump’s compressor and use it to heat your water. The only downside is that when not using your compressor it will not provide the hot water because it is not running. Some companies are also giving a system with a separate heater during times of non use because the geothermal heating systems are such a money saver and so much more efficient.

Even though the cost of installation of Geothermal Heating Systems can be several times that of traditional heating and cooling systems, the additional costs are returned in energy savings in 5 to 10 years. This is due to the very high efficiency of Geothermal Heat Pumps.

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Article Citation
MLA Style Citation:
McCall, Ryan "Geothermal Heat Pumps: Cost Effective And Environmentally Sound." Geothermal Heat Pumps: Cost Effective And Environmentally Sound. 27 Jun. 2010. uberarticles.com. 11 Sep 2014 <http://uberarticles.com/home-and-family/geothermal-heat-pumps-cost-effective-and-environmentally-sound/>.

APA Style Citation:
McCall, R (2010, June 27). Geothermal Heat Pumps: Cost Effective And Environmentally Sound. Retrieved September 11, 2014, from http://uberarticles.com/home-and-family/geothermal-heat-pumps-cost-effective-and-environmentally-sound/

Chicago Style Citation:
McCall, Ryan "Geothermal Heat Pumps: Cost Effective And Environmentally Sound" uberarticles.com. http://uberarticles.com/home-and-family/geothermal-heat-pumps-cost-effective-and-environmentally-sound/


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