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Riley Heating & Air Blog

Air Source vs Geothermal Heat Pumps

Originally published November 2013, updated November 2016

If you are preparing to upgrade the heating and cooling system in your Seale, Alabama, home, you may be exploring high-efficiency options. This is important for those who want to make use of federal tax incentives before the end of the year. It’s also a wise consideration because higher efficiency levels mean lower utility bills. Those interested in green energy issues also seek the best systems for the environment. Both air source and geothermal heat pumps can satisfy energy-saving and performance goals.

How Heat Pumps Work

You may be able to make a more informed choice by understanding the pros and cons of heat pumps. A heat pump can be a very efficient means of heating and cooling your home. High-efficiency air source heat pumps can cool your home just as well as leading air conditioning units. Meanwhile, electric heating with a heat pump provides an efficient and affordable means of warming your house during cold weather.

Air-source heat pumps use the outside air in a heat exchange process, absorbing heat from the outside during the heating cycle and releasing heat outside during the cooling cycle. In cooling mode, the refrigerant is pressurized in outside coils and evaporated indoors. As the refrigerant cools, it absorbs indoor heat and causes the air to cool. The process is reversed for heating mode.

Benefits of Geothermal Heat Pumps

A geothermal heat pump uses the ground or water source to gain or release heat. There are several types of geothermal units, and the main benefit of using any of these types of systems is that ground and water temperatures are more stable than air temperatures. A heat pump can operate more efficiently when it relies on less extreme sources for heat transfer. This can lead to a savings of as much as 70 percent on heating and cooling costs. Additionally, some systems also produce hot water for water heaters, so you save even more money. You can also benefit from the following:

  • Enhanced comfort because of more efficient operation
  • Improved indoor air quality levels
  • Less noise during system operation
  • Minimal maintenance needed

Is a Heat Pump Right for Your Home?

With federal tax credits, you may be able to recover 30 percent of your investment in a geothermal system. However, finding the right unit requires the evaluation of a professional who specializes in geothermal solutions. Property sizing, soil tests, water quality and local building codes play a role in determining which green energy system will work for you. Riley Heating & Air Conditioning will evaluate your Phenix City, AL, home to recommend the best heat pump for your needs. Call us today at 334-298-1278 to schedule a consultation.

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