What is geothermal heating and cooling?

| by Geothermal Day
What is geothermal heating and cooling?

With Geothermal Day getting closer, more and more people are becoming aware of geothermal heating and cooling for their home.

Geothermal Day is Oct. 22, 2015, a day set aside to raise awareness about this form of renewable energy.

Lots of people have questions about geothermal, so here are some basic answers:

What is geothermal?
Geothermal is a clean (no fossil fuel consumption) form of renewable energy that involves the sun heating the earth beneath our feet. The earth absorbs 50 percent of the sun’s energy, which is more than 500 times more energy than mankind needs every year. Through a geothermal system (geo for earth and thermal for the heat from the sun) we use that energy in the ground to heat and cool our homes.

How does geothermal work?
Geothermal is possible because the temperature of the earth at 4-6 ft. below ground remains relatively constant year-round. A loop system buried in the ground carries heat from the home through the loop in the ground. When it's cold outside, the ground is warmer and carries the heat from the ground into the home through a ground-source heat pump to warm the house. During the summer the reverse happens – the system takes the heat out of the house and moves into the ground.

Why is geothermal a better choice?
Geothermal heating and cooling systems are 400 percent to 600 percent efficient and can cut heating, cooling, and hot water costs by up to 80 percent. The only energy required is for pumps, condenser and fans for the ground-source heat pump operation. The loop can be horizontal or vertical, depending on the soil and site conditions. In some cases ground water can be used as well.

Why should I consider geothermal for my home?

  • Geothermal is the most efficient form of heating and cooling that exists. The systems in place today save over 40 trillion tons of heat units a year and eliminate almost 6 million metric tons of carbon dioxide from the air every year.
  • A geothermal heating-cooling system saves enough energy in one year to mow 925 football fields.
  • In 2014 geothermal systems will reduce America’s dependence on imported fossil fuels by over 21 million barrels of crude oil a year.
  • Today’s use of geothermal systems is equivalent to planting over 385 million trees. And removing 1,295,000 cars from the road.

How reliable is geothermal heating and cooling?
Geothermal systems are not affected by clouds or darkness, by wind or lack of it, and are operational 24 hours a days, 365 days a year for as long as the earth and sun last.

Find out more about geothermal heating and cooling at GeothermalDay.com.

Topics: Geothermal Heating & Cooling

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