Geothermal home heating
and cooling systems
Disadvantages of geothermal energy
A geothermal heat pump, also called a
ground source heat pump, is by far the most energy efficient home heating and cooling system available
today. At 500%
efficient, it outperforms a conventional air source heat pump by double, and a gas furnace/boiler by being
FIVE times more efficient.
You pay for one unit of electricity and
receive 4 units for FREE. How can
that be you might ask?? How can anything be more than 100% efficient? It can’t unless you introduce and external
source. In the case of a geothermal
heating and cooling system, the ground, or mother earth, is the external source.
A ground source heat pump uses a closed
loop of water/anti-freeze mix and the earth as a super-efficient heat exchanger.
I could go on and on about the
advantages of a residential geothermal heat pump but this page is about the disadvantages of geothermal
energy. For most of you that came
to this page, you came looking for information on a geothermal heat pump and not necessarily the disadvantages of
geothermal energy that comes from deep within the earth.
However, I’ll briefly cover both.
Disadvantages of Geothermal Energy
Geothermal energy defined as heat stored deep below the
earth’s surface is definitely a green, eco-friendly energy source. Super-heated water is stored deep in the
earth’s crust at extreme temperatures. This super-heated water can be brought to the earth’s surface and used to generate
electricity. At this time,
a geothermal energy plant is cost prohibitive and very expensive.
Another disadvantage of this type of geothermal energy is that it can be
fairly difficult and expensive to build the plants required to convert the hot water and steam into
A geothermal energy plant, like the one pictured below in Iceland, cannot be
used for residential use and is a true power plant.
- A disadvantage of a geothermal
heat pump used to heat and cool your home can be the upfront costs. A geothermal heat pump will typically costs twice
that of a conventional system.
It is very important to note that most of the added expense of a geothermal heat
pump is in drilling the holes for the vertical loops (picture) or digging the trenches for a horizontal loop
(picture). The system inside
your house is essentially the same as a conventional heating and air system.
Another potential disadvantage of a geothermal heating and
cooling system can be finding an installer in your area.
Not only do you need to find an installer but one that has experience
installing geothermal heat pumps.
Thanks to the many advantages of a geothermal heating and cooling system and
their efficiency, more and more homeowners are starting to use them , resulting in widespread usage and
Despite these disadvantages, I still
strongly recommend that you take a serious look into a geothermal heating and cooling system for
your home. If you are building and
new home and looking for energy efficient house plans I can help you with your custom blueprints and teach you how to make it super energy
Are you building a home and looking for a custom, passive solar house plan? Visit my home
design site at www.rye-homes.com for more information.
If you aren’t building a new home and
just want to make your existing home more energy efficient I suggest you order my DVD that teaches you everything
you need to know. Learn
Tags: geothermal heating and cooling,
disadvantages of geothermal energy, geothermal heat pumps.