The Basic Features and Functions of a Geothermal Heat Pump

What most people say they appreciate most of all about a geothermal heating and cooling system is that it has so little in the way of moving parts. There’s just that much less that can go bad– that much less requiring maintenance. And that alone makes a significant difference in lowering the overall energy costs of Greene County homeowners who’ve gone geothermal.


Of course, the system is not without any moving parts. Most of them are found in its most vital component, too: the geothermal heat pump.

This is the system’s workhorse. Its purpose is to transfer heat. And it transfers heat either from the ground into your house or from your house into the ground, depending on the climate30. Consequently, it’s a furnace and an air conditioner rolled into one compact package.

How the heat pump transfers heat is with water or an antifreeze solution. This liquid courses through pipe loops buried underground and attached to the heat pump, which is positioned above ground. During heating season the liquid draws heat from the ground, the heat pump draws the warm liquid up into refrigerant coils, and from that point the heat is dispensed throughout a home by either a forced air or a hydronic system. During cooling season the process runs in reverse: the pump draws heat from your home and transfers it to the ground by way of those same buried loops. Oh, and somewhere along the way, more than a few geothermal systems also produce domestic hot water.

The basic distinction between a geothermal heat pump and a more familiar furnace is that a heat pump doesn’t ignite fuel to generate heat. Rather, it takes heat that’s already there and just moves it around. That naturally makes it a much more efficient heating and cooling system. Bear this in mind, too: underground temperatures almost always hold at around 50º F through the year. The payoff? A geothermal heating and cooling system uses significantly less energy to cool your home than conventional air conditioners.

So … is a geothermal system what’s needed for your Greene County home? Turn to this region’s geothermal specialists, the friendly people at Kool-Temp Heating & Cooling Inc..