Geothermal powered Residential Home

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Various Geothermal Technologies that are on Trail

The sharp rise in crude oil prices and the subsequent increase in electricity prices have prompted many of us to look for cheaper, alternative sources of energy. One of the most cost-efficient options available now is the use of geothermal power in providing heating and electricity in our homes.

Geothermal powered Residential Homes

The use of heating power for a geothermal powered home

Geothermal powered homes make use of the earth's stored heat beneath the surface to power up geothermal pumps used in producing electricity, and for heating purposes.

A system of pipes is installed underneath the house which would obtain and transport the underground heat to the pumps. It can either heat up or cool down the house, depending on how the pump works.

During winter, geothermal heat pumps use the underground heat to warm up the house, whereas during summer, this heat source becomes a heat dump.

Main Components

A geothermal powered heating/cooling system is composed of the following components:

  • - Heat pump: For heating, the pump obtains heat from the system of pipes, concentrates it, then is delivered to the home or is injected into the water system. For cooling, the system is reversed: heat from the house is collected and brought back to the pump, and is then dispersed underground via the pipe system.
     
  • - Ground loop: This is a system of fluid-filled pipes that are buried underground, the design of which depends on the size and capacity of the house to be warmed or cooled.
     
  • - Air delivery system: This is the conventional ductwork that distributes the heated or cooled air.

Geothermal systems vary in capacity and design depending on the intended use and the size of the house or building that will use it. An integral component of a geothermal system is the ground loop.

There are two main types of ground loops:
the open loop and the closed loop. Open loop systems circulate water from the ground or a water source through pipes. The water is then used for heat exchange, after which the water is returned to a well or a surface discharge.

On the other hand, closed loop systems make use of a solution of water and anti-freeze circulating through a series of sealed pipes. The system of pipes may be installed vertically or horizontally in the ground, or a nearby body of water such as a pond. For residential use, the closed loop system is recommended (DIY - Geothermal Home Heating).

Geothermal powered Homes provide cost-efficient heating

Many homes use geothermal heating power to produce hot water for their own consumption. This is done by using a geothermal heat pump with a "desuperheater". The desuperheater works by transferring the excess heat from the heat pump to the house's water tank.

It is a cost-efficient means of heating water especially during winter and summer where the geothermal heat pump works the most, either bringing in or taking heat out of the house.

Geothermal Technology

Geothermal technology for residential homes

Geothermal technology is definitely a cost-effective and environment-friendly source of energy for today's modern home. Though the initial costs may be high, in the long run it is a wise investment as it could bring you savings of up to 40% in your monthly electric bill, and it usually takes about 5-10 years for payback.

If you are interested to find out if geothermal power is for your home, you may want to contact a service provider near your location to help you assess how you can use this technology for your benefit.

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Geothermal powered Residential Home