Benefits of a Geothermal Heating System

Geothermal

Airtron is the area’s foremost authority on geothermal heating and air conditioning systems. Our geothermal specialists can take care of every detail from sizing and design to unit installation, loop coordination, and startup. Leave the details to us and let our experts save you money each and every month.

THE GEOTHERMAL ADVANTAGE: up to 500% Efficiency

A geothermal system uses the Earth’s thermal properties in conjunction with electricity to provide unprecedented efficiency. For every unit of electricity the system uses, it provides up to five units of heating energy, giving a geothermal system a 500 percent efficiency rating. These numbers can translate into real savings on your utility bills year-round.

 

According to the EPA, “Geothermal systems are the most energy-efficient, environmentally clean, and cost effective space conditioning systems available.”

 

To learn more about our geothermal options, contact us today.

More on Geothermal

Operating Cost Comparison

Operating Cost Comparison

In addition to your monthly energy savings, nearly all geothermal units qualify for a government tax credit upon installation of your new system. Please see our FAQ page for more information. Our geothermal specialist would be happy to prepare a detailed cost comparison based on your specific situation.

Advantages

Advantages

Lower Operating Costs

A Geothermal system operates more efficiently than ordinary heating and air conditioning systems—as much as 65 percent more efficiently, in some cases.

Comfort

Because a Geothermal system uses the relatively stable temperature of the earth as an energy source, you’re assured of constant, even winter heating and better humidity control in summer.

Safety

With a Geothermal system, there are no flames, no flues and no odors. There’s no danger of combustion, fire or carbon monoxide poisoning, either. What you get is safe, reliable operation year after year.

Clean Operation

A Geothermal system minimizes environmental threats linked to fossil-fuel burning, including acid rain, air pollution and the greenhouse effect.

Quiet Operation

A Geothermal system is designed and manufactured to be exceptionally quiet. Variable speed units run at least as quietly as your refrigerator or freezer. On low speed they use less electricity than a 85 watt lightbulb.

Flexibility

A Geothermal system provides heating, central air conditioning and hot water, all from the same compact unit.
Economical Water Heating
Water heating can be a significant energy expense. With the Hot Water Assist option, a Geothermal system can reduce the high cost of water heating by as much as 66 percent.

Good Looks

The completely self-contained indoor Geothermal system needs no noisy, unsightly outside condensing unit. Your neighbors won’t have any cause for complaint.

Comfort Guarantee

Each new system Airtron installs has been precisely engineered and designed with your comfort in mind. Our programs assure correct sizing and our superior duct designs are guaranteed to provide you with the utmost comfort year round.

How They Work

How They Work

Outdoor temperatures fluctuate with the changing seasons but underground temperatures don’t.

The earth absorbs almost 50% of all solar energy and remains a nearly constant temperature of 50°F to 70°F depending on geographic location. Working with an underground loop system, a geothermal unit utilizes this constant temperature to exchange energy between your home and the earth as needed for heating and cooling.

 

In winter, water circulating inside a sealed loop absorbs heat from the earth and carries it to the unit. Here it is compressed to a higher temperature and sent as warm air to your indoor system for distribution throughout your home.

In the summer, the system reverses and expels heat from your home to the cooler earth via the loop system. This heat exchange process is not only natural, but is a truly ingenious and highly efficient way to create a comfortable climate in your home.

Loop Options

Loop Options

Closed Loop
Closed-loop systems circulate a water-based solution through a “loop” of small-diameter, underground pipes. Closed-loop systems can be installed horizontally, vertically or in a pond. Regardless of whether the system is open or closed, heat is transferred to or from the home to provide year-round comfort, no matter what the outdoor temperature is.
Horizontal Loops
Horizontal Loops are installed in areas where the soil conditions allow for economical excavation. Taking up more land area than any other loop type, they are used where space permits. Trenches are normally 5 feet deep. Normally, several hundred feet of trench is required.
Vertical Loops
Vertical Loops are used extensively where land area is limited. A pair of pipes with a special U-Bend assembly at the bottom are inserted into a small bore hole that averages between 150 to 250 feet in depth per ton of equipment.
Lake Loops
Lake Loops are usually very economical to install. If a pond or lake at least 8 feet deep is available, lake loops can utilize the water (rather than soil) for heat transfer. Reduced installation costs are characteristic of this type of loop system.

Typical Installation

Installation

The geothermal loops are brought into the home and tied into a flow center. This controls the flow of refrigerant from the underground loop into the geothermal unit and back. The refrigerant is cycled through the unit where the heat is either extracted from (heating mode) or transferred to (cooling mode) the loop. The unit then sends the heat/cooling throughout the home. As an added benefit, geothermal units with the hot water assist option supplement your water heating. This option works by circulating the water from your water heater through a heat exchanger built into the geothermal unit that recovers superheat from the compressor discharge gas.

FAQ

FAQ

What makes a geothermal system different from ordinary systems?

Unlike ordinary systems, geothermal systems do not burn fossil fuel to generate heat; they simply transfer heat to and from the earth to provide a more efficient, affordable and environmentally friendly method of heating and cooling. Typically, electric power is used only to operate the unit’s fan, compressor and pump.

What are the components of a geothermal system?

The three main parts consist of the heat-pump unit, the liquid heat-exchange medium (loop), and the air-delivery system (ductwork).

How efficient is a geothermal system?

A geothermal system is four to five times more efficient than the most efficient ordinary system. With a normal furnace, anywhere from 4% – 30+% of the gas used is lost due to combustion. Because geothermal systems do not burn fossil fuels to make heat, they provide up to five units of energy for every one unit used to power the system.

How is the efficiency rated?

All heating and cooling systems have a rated efficiency from a U.S. governmental agency. Fossil fuel furnaces have a percentage efficiency rating. These are figured based on how much of the gasses used by the furnace are actually turned into heat for the home. Most furnaces installed today are between 80-95% efficiency, meaning that the rest is lost in combustion or exhaust.

 

Geothermal heat pumps, as well as all other types of heat pumps, have efficiencies rated according to their coefficient of performance or COP. It’s a scientific way of determining how much energy the system produces versus how much it uses. Most geothermal heat pump systems have COPs of 3-4.5. That means for every unit of energy used to power the system, 3-4.5 units are supplied as heat. Where a fossil fuel furnace may be 70-95 percent efficient, a geothermal heat pump is about 400 percent efficient.

Can a geothermal heat pump be added to my fossil fuel furnace?

Split systems easily can be added to existing furnaces for those wishing to have a dual-fuel heating system. Dual-fuel systems use the heat pump as the main heating source and a fossil fuel furnace as a supplement in extremely cold weather if additional heat is needed.

Is a geothermal heat pump difficult to install?

Most units are easy to install, particularly when they replace another forced-air system. They can be installed in areas unsuitable for fossil fuel furnaces because there is no combustion, thus there is no need for vent pipes. Ductwork must be installed in homes that don’t have an existing air distribution system. The difficulty of installing ductwork will vary, please contact us to discuss your specific situation.

I have ductwork, but will it work with this system?

In all probability, yes. But to make sure, please contact us to speak with a specialist to determine ductwork requirements and any minor modifications that may be needed.

Do geothermal systems require much maintenance?

No. Geothermal systems are virtually maintenance free. When installed properly, the buried loop will last for generations. And the other half of the operation—the unit’s fan, compressor and pump—is housed indoors, protected from the harsh weather conditions. Usually, periodic checks and filter changes are the only required maintenance.

What does geothermal mean for the environment?

Put simply, geothermal systems are the most environmentally friendly units available today. Geothermal systems work with nature, not against it. Because there is no combustion, hey emit no greenhouse gases, which have been linked to global warming, acid rain and other environmental hazards. The antifreeze inside the underground loop will not harm the environment in the unlikely event of a leak. And most of the geothermal units use R-410A, a performance-enhancing refrigerant that will not harm the earth’s ozone layer.

Do geothermal units qualify for tax credits?

Nearly all of the geothermal units we install qualify for government tax credits. According to the Department of Energy, these units qualify for a $300 credit as an energy-efficient home improvement. Please see https://www.energy.gov/taxbreaks.htm for more details. In addition, many local energy providers have special offers for their geothermal customers that may add up to even more savings. Please contact your local energy provider for more information.