Geothermal heating is an idea that has been around for a long time. But just what is it and how does it actually work?
Steam created from deep underground heat sources or natural hot springs have been used as a clean energy heating source for years.
If you have a dog, you have probably noticed how they like to dig a hole in the ground to lie in on hot days. Even just that few inches into the ground is cooler than the surrounding air.
They instinctively know what many home renovators are just discovering. Just below the surface, the ground maintains a steady temperature year round. Usually this temperature is cooler than the air temperature on hot days and warmer on cold days.
As energy costs rise, more and more people are tapping into this simple fact to use this renewable energy source to heat and cool their homes. There are numerous advantages.
According to the Environmental Protection Agency
- Geothermal heating and cooling is the most cost effective, energy efficient and environmentally clean heating and cooling system available in the United States.
- Replacing a normal HVAC system with a geothermal system results in savings that are the equivalent of planting 750 trees, 3/4 an acre of rain forest or not driving your car 140,000 miles.
- The average house creates more greenhouse gas emissions than the average car.
- Currently more than 9% of our countries energy usage in the United States is used for heating and cooling our homes.
- These alternative energy systems are at least three times more efficient than fossil fuel systems.
This alternative energy source can be used to create significant cost savings for the average homeowner and generate huge benefits for our environment.
So how does it work?
The earth is a vast reservoir of thermal energy from the sun and the molten lava at our planets core. A geothermal system just transfers this heat from the ground into the home in winter and the heat from your home into the ground in the summer.
Because heat is being transferred rather than created the systems operate at much higher efficiencies than normal fossil fueled systems.
With rising energy costs and growing interest in clean energy using this alternative energy source can not only save you money now and for years to come, it will create added value to your biggest investment, your home.