Despite all the advantages they offer, geothermal heating systems aren’t as widely used as conventional heating and cooling methods. The reasons behind this concern upfront costs, lack of knowledge about the systems, and inconsistent incentive initiatives. In the last few years, the federal government has been pushing tax credits for homeowners installing geothermal heating systems, which have allowed many more homeowners to take advantage of this efficient heating and cooling technology in their homes.
Geothermal heating systems perform better than air source heat pumps. While the air outside fluctuates in temperature, the ground below us remains at a steady temperature all year long. The lack of temperature variation in the heat source used by geothermal heating systems makes them more than twice as efficient compared to air source heat pumps.
Yes, geothermal heating systems are more expensive to install. They don’t just consist of the equipment you see in your home or outside like conventional forced air heating and cooling systems have. There is also the ground loop component which is comprised of hundreds of feet of pipes buried underground. The ground loop works with the heat pump to absorb and circulate heat from the earth up into your home.
The performance of your home’s geothermal heating system will depend on a few factors. First, the climate will play a role in determining your home’s heating demand. Second, the heating fuels you geothermal heating system is replacing will also play a role, as some fuels and heating equipment are more efficient than others, and more expensive. Replacing expensive heating fuels with a geothermal heating system will result in greater energy and monetary savings versus lower cost fuels.