Geothermal System Myths Debunked

December 13, 2013
Ross and Witmer

While geothermal heating and cooling has a 60-year history, many geothermal system myths still exist. If you’re considering installing this HVAC system in your Charlotte area home, debunk these geothermal system myths first.

  • Myth: Geothermal uses electricity, so it’s not renewable. Geothermal only uses one unit of electricity for every five units of heat energy it generates, making it incredibly efficient and eco-friendly.
  • Myth: Solar and wind are preferred over geothermal. Those renewable technologies play an important role, but geothermal is often more economical for residential applications.
  • Myth: You need a huge plot of land for geothermal. If the site characteristics are right, the underground loop can be buried vertically, which requires very little above-ground surface area.
  • Myth: Geothermal heat pumps operate loudly. With no noisy outdoor compressor and a quiet blower motor, you can hardly tell when the geothermal heat pump is running.
  • Myth: Geothermal systems wear out. Typically, the underground loop comes with at least a 50-year warranty. When the heat pump requires replacing more than a decade down the road, it’s much less costly than the initial installation cost.
  • Myth: Geothermal can heat, but it can’t cool a home. Geothermal heat pumps have a reversing valve to effectively cool your home in the summer, making sure your home is comfortable throughout the year.
  • Myth: It’s not possible for a geothermal system to handle multiple loads at once. You can program your geothermal heat pump to heat your home, your hot water and your pool simultaneously.
  • Myth: The underground loops leak refrigerant into the earth. Most systems just have water in the ground loops. Those that use refrigerant are closed-loop so the chemical isn’t released into the earth.
  • Myth: Geothermal requires a lot of water. The “pump and dump” days are over. Today, water recirculates the same way refrigerant does in an air conditioner.
  • Myth: Geothermal is too expensive. Federal tax credits available through 2016 allow you to deduct 30 percent of the cost with no upward limit, making geothermal competitive with conventional equipment costs.

To debunk more geothermal system myths, contact Ross & Witmer in Charlotte today.

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