As the temperature drops and winter closes in on the Mid-Atlantic region, there's no time like the present to start thinking of ways to keep warm without spending an exorbitant amount of money. Geothermal heating is an efficient and easy system that has low maintenance requirements, uses very little energy, and can also cool your home and provide hot water in the summer. However, there are some common geothermal system myths that you may have heard, which may discourage you from having a geothermal heat pump installed in your home. Let's get the facts straight:
Myth: Geothermal energy is not a renewable resource.
Fact: Geothermal systems only use one unit of electricity to move up to five units of heating from the earth to a building, using 25-50 percent less electricity than conventional systems. They also remove more consumption from the electrical grid per dollar than wind power, making geothermal heating a cost-effective way to reduce environmental impact. Geothermal cooling is also more efficient than a high-efficiency A/C or heat pump. It requires much less energy to reject heat energy from the home into the relatively cool earth than it does to release it into the warm outside air, as occurs with an A/C or heat pump.
Myth: Installing a geothermal heating system requires a lot of space.
Fact: There are a few different ways to install a geothermal heat pump system, including with either horizontal or vertical loop systems. In the latter instance, this means not a lot of above-ground space is needed. And if there is an aquifer that can be used, even less space is required.
Myth:Geothermal systems are noisy.
Fact: There is no outside equipment to be heard by you or your neighbors, and the inside heat pump components are also relatively quiet, since they typically operate a slow and continuous speed.
Myth: Geothermal will only work as a heating system.
Fact: It is just as effective in cooling your home in summer as heating it in winter. It's just a matter of removing heat from the home in the summer, and bringing it inside in the winter.
Myth: Geothermal systems are prohibitively expensive.
Fact: While a geothermal heat pump system will cost more to install than a conventional HVAC system, its long-term energy savings can make up for that additional cost, plus you'll get improved home comfort in both winter and summer. Until the end of 2016, a qualified geothermal system will qualify for a generous 30 percent federal energy tax credit, further helping to defray the cost of going geothermal.
To speak to a qualified HVAC technician about common geothermal system myths or any other issue regarding home comfort, please contact us at at Sobieski Services, Inc. We are ready to provide expert advice and help you choose the right heating system to suit your needs. Our goal is to help educate our customers in Delaware, Pennsylvania, Maryland and New Jersey about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC & plumbing systems).