The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency ranks geothermal systems as the most cost-effective space conditioning systems available. Lower operating and maintenance costs together with the systems’ long life give geothermal systems the lowest life cycle cost on the market.
These “boilerless/towerless” heat pump systems use the natural thermal properties of the earth to dissipate or capture heat for the water loop. Geothermal heat pumps operate in an identical fashion to water-source heat pump units. However, without the need for a boiler or cooling tower, geothermal heat pumps save substantial energy costs and space.
The water-loop system is underground and the units are inside the building. Thus, the environmentally friendly geothermal system preserves the architectural design of a building naturally.
Geothermal earth loops come in several different configurations depending on space availability and soil properties. Loop fields can be located under parking lots, landscaped areas, or any number of other locations. All earth loops use high-density polyethylene pipe to circulate either water or an antifreeze mixture. All joints and connection fittings are thermally fused to prevent leaks and most piping comes with a 25-year or longer warranty.
Geothermal heat pump systems provide all of the benefits of a water-loop heat pump system and many more. Here are some of the benefits with a commercial geothermal system compared to traditional HVAC systems:
- Increases energy efficiency and lowers energy costs by utilizing renewable energy for loop temperature conditioning and by providing more favorable water temperatures to the heat pumps throughout the year
- Proven reliability
- Ease of service
- Eliminates boiler and heat rejector installation, operation and maintenance costs mean low HVAC lifetime costs
- Eliminates all outdoor equipment and thus eliminates or greatly reduces:
Eliminates the water-loop temperature controls and associated panels, control valves, switches and sensors
Quickly achieve LEED certification
Reduces mechanical room space to just the pumping aspects
Individual zones and single zones: Geothermal allows water-source heat pump systems to be economically scaled down to applications as small as a single zone