For today’s homeowner there are all sorts of ways you can reduce your carbon footprint. Depending on your state, there’s a multitude of incentives for you to convert your home’s energy usage and become more sustainable. You may have long-since been on that train what with your Energy Star rated appliances, windows, and low-flow toilets. Solar panels? You got those soon as they became consumer-ready. But what about your HVAC system? The summers are getting hotter and winters are getting colder. Your heating and cooling system is working overtime to compete with harsh climate changes.
Like anything else, there’s a solution for that. Geothermal HVAC. Not to be confused with its close cousin, Geothermal Energy, this technology works specifically for keeping your home at that nice, comfortable temperature. Tax incentives for Geothermal ranges between Federal and State, but with the returns and savings it’s an investment you’ll make back in no time.
What Is It And What Does It Do?
Geothermal heating and cooling is a system installed underneath your house that uses the earth’s core temperature to its advantage. Once you get around 6 feet underground the temperature stays between 68 and 72 degrees fahrenheit. A series of pipes, well, rings and heat exchanger are placed in that nice cool spot. Water is pulled from the well, run through the heat exchange to bring it up to the desired temperature, and then pushed through the loop systems to heat or cool your home.
Traditional systems use a series of complicated mechanics and chemicals to draw air in from the outside, raise or lower its temperature, and pushed through the vent system. Most folks keep their homes in that 68-72 degree range already. When it’s hot outside, say 100 degrees in the summer, your traditional system has to convert the air almost 30 degrees before it’s cool enough to make your house cozy. In the winter months you could be facing double that amount of temperature change. But since the water in a geothermal system always starts in that 68-72 range, the work the heat exchange has to do is practically nothing. Because your system has to work less, you use less energy and your electric bills lower.
What’s It Cost And How Does it Payoff?
The size of your home will ultimately determine the final cost. But on average a new geothermal system will run in the ballpark of $15,000. But you save roughly $2,400 a year as heating a cooling costs are typically reduced by half. Your system will pay for itself in a matter of six years on average. Factor in whatever tax incentives you qualify for and you’ve got a pretty sweet deal even from the get go.
Maintenance for these systems are also very low. There are no chemicals used in geothermal HVAC and unless you somehow spring a leak, you’ll not need to replace the water running in the system much at all, if ever. The pump or motor for the heat exchange will be the most likely repairs needed. But homeowners who’ve installed geothermal report only needing repairs once, maybe twice in a decade. Lastly, geothermal heating and air is so quiet you’ll barely ever know it’s running.
Whether you’re building from the ground up or trying to bring your current home into the future, geothermal HVAC is an excellent option for this major detail of home comfort. Research certified Geothermal professionals and the incentives available for you and your area. There’s no better time to start doing better for yourself or the planet.