cutaway drawing of geothermal heating system with ground loops

Geothermal heating and cooling systems create a huge amount of hot or cold air with very little energy usage. What is the science behind geothermal energy?

Below, we break down how it works and weigh the pros and cons of this HVAC system.

How Geothermal Energy Heats Homes

Essentially, far beneath our feet, the earth keeps a steady temperature, regardless of the temperature above ground. We can tap into that steady temperature and use it to cool us in the summer or heat us in the winter.

It sounds great, but are there any downsides? As with any HVAC system, there are pros and cons to geothermal energy. After all, if one system was definitely better, everyone would use it. Instead, you should ask if the challenges of geothermal energy outweigh the benefits for you. We’ll help you decide below.

Pros and Cons of Using Geothermal Energy

Here is a basic outline of geothermal energy’s pros and cons:

Pros of Geothermal Energy Cons of Geothermal Energy
  • Environmentally friendly
  • High up-front costs
  • Savings on heating, cooling and hot water up to 70%
  • Excavation and outside work required
  • Works regardless of sun or wind conditions
  • You need a larger electrical source
  • Government grants may be offered for installation
  • Maintenance can be costly and invasive
  • On a closed-loop system, they have a long-life span, 50 or more years for underground components

When you see the pros and cons listed above, it seems like there are more benefits to geothermal energy than cons, but that doesn’t always mean it is the right system for your property.

Wondering if this modern home energy system is right for you and your family? Contact our team at RB Heating ClimateCare today for more information.

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How Efficient is Geothermal Energy?

The fact that geothermal heat pumps use the thermal properties of the earth to create energy makes them highly efficient. A geothermal system is not supplemented by your air conditioner or furnace. If sized properly, a geothermal system is a complete replacement for your HVAC needs.

They don’t need to create heat; just transfer it, which will end up saving you money on your energy bills. As an example, for every dollar of electricity used in a geothermal system, it uses roughly four dollars for free.

This type of efficiency can’t be matched by other heating and cooling systems and is a big reason so many homeowners are making the switch.

Main Challenges of Geothermal Energy 

For most homeowners, the biggest thing giving them pause about a geothermal heating and cooling system is the major upfront cost. While a new furnace, air conditioner, and water heater can cost you twelve to fifteen thousand dollars for a complete system replacement (furnace, ac, and hot water heater), a geothermal system will cost you about twenty to thirty thousand dollars, depending on your specific property. To recoup the value of the system in reduced heating and cooling bills will depend on which type of system is being replaced and an average customer will see a payback in their home investment in 5-10 years.

Also, while geothermal systems have exceptionally long lifespans lasting twice as long as other fossil fuel systems, they do not last forever.

Discuss Geothermal Heating With an Expert Today

Are you looking for more information on geothermal energy? Our team at RB Heating ClimateCare would be happy to help. Give us a call today.

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