Ground Source Heat Pumps FAQs - Viva Training Centre

Frequently asked questions and answers you might have if you are considering investing in a ground source heat pump.

What is a Ground Source Heat Pump?

A Ground Source Heat Pump works by using the earth as a natural resource to generate heat, either warming air inside your home or water used for heating.

How does it work?

The earth stores and releases thermal energy, so by putting pipes into it, we can extract this energy when it’s cold outside and transfer it back when the temperature rises. In other words, the system uses one of the fundamental laws of thermodynamics – heat flows from a warm body to a cold body.

The Ground Source Heat Pump can be used in heating and cooling with just one unit.

Will it cost me anything to have it installed?

Yes, there will be costs involved in installing the system, including heavy groundwork, but that depends on what kind of house you live in: for example, if you live in an old house with big windows, then you will need quite a lot of pipes – this could be expensive. In contrast, if you live in a new home, you won’t need as many pipes as an old property – this would be cheaper. In general, the average cost of installation starts at around £7000.

Why would I want it?

The Ground Source Heat Pump can help to save you money. It will warm the air inside your home and the water you use for heating. It can also help lower your heating costs by up to 60-70% because it uses natural thermal energy.

How much money will it save me?

Many people find that they can spend less on their bills due to investing in a Ground Source Heat Pump. However, this depends on how cold it gets outside, how well insulated your home is, and how much you spend on the heating before installing the pump.

What are the advantages?

There are many advantages to investing in a Ground Source Heat Pump, including lowering your heating bills by up to 60-70%, helping to reduce your carbon footprint, and helping the environment, being cost-effective and easy to maintain.

What are some disadvantages?

There are very few disadvantages to installing a ground source heat pump. The only one that springs to mind is that you will have to pay for this system when you invest in it – and this could be expensive if you live in an old property.

Will I have to do anything about it?

No, the Ground Source Heat Pump is perfect as-is. There are very few maintenance costs associated with it. The only one that springs to mind is that you will have to pay for a ground source heat pump when you invest in a ground source heat pump.

What are some of the different types?

The Ground Source Heat Pump can be classified into two distinct types: Open Loop and Closed Loop.

An Open Loop system has pipes put down into the earth with a pump to extract energy from the soil. This relies on natural power; for example, you will get more power to your house if it’s windy. In contrast, a Closed Loop system uses water to extract heat from the ground. The water gets hot and is transferred back inside your home, helping warm it.

A Ground Source Heat Pump can be used in heating and cooling with just one unit.

Can I get the same result with solar panels?

No, because you cannot use the sun for heating or cooling your house. Solar panels are expensive to install and maintain, so investing in a Ground Source Heat Pump is better. They are more cost-efficient and cheaper to maintain than solar panels.

How long will it take for installation to take place?

Installation usually takes one to two weeks to complete, although some will be ready for immediate use.

What size house can it be used in?

All sizes of a house can benefit from a ground source heat pump as it only depends on how much energy you want to use, i.e., how big your home is, how big the rooms are and how many people live in it.

Does my water have to be used for heating?

It is unnecessary for the water you use to heat the ground source heat pump. Water can also be the source of natural energy, but you can choose which energy source you want.

How many Btus per hour does it produce?

A Ground Source Heat Pump produces around 1,500 Btus per hour. This can vary depending on how many heat exchangers you have and how much oil is being heated.

What are the incentives for installing ground source heat pumps?

The Government has started a non-invasive (hole-less) ground source heat pump program. Under this scheme, the government gives grants to homeowners who install ground source heat pumps instead of other heating methods. This will be done in association with your energy company. When it comes time to renew your system or switch to another one, the government will pay for half of the cost of replacing it with a non-invasive Ground Source Heat Pump.

Are ground source heat pumps noisy

Ground Source Heat Pumps are usually quieter than air source heat pumps. This can be attributed to the fact that they use deep wells, and it is a much bigger system – so much more power is produced than an air source heat pump.

Are there any reasons I would not want to install one in my home?

No, ground source heat pumps are very effective and reliable and a cost-effective way of heating your home. There are no real disadvantages associated with ground source heat pumps. If a Ground Source Heat Pump doesn’t fit your property, an air source heat pump might be the best option.

I have my borehole from when I installed my fountain; could this be used?

It is unlikely that you will be able to use your borehole for a ground source heat pump. The ground source heat pump unit you would need to have installed is much bigger than the system you probably already have in your garden. Your water could still be used as an energy source – but only because it is much smaller and easier to install.

Are heat pumps environmentally friendly?

Yes, ground source heat pumps are environmentally friendly because they use natural resources as an energy source. Unlike other forms of heating, there are no greenhouse gases emitted, so you can help to combat global warming.

Can I use heat pump 24 hours a day?

No. Heat pumps only work effectively for heating a house for a certain amount of hours each day. This is because the ground temperature is not consistent, so the heat pump will be unable to regulate itself when it runs out of hot water.

With a heat pump, do I still need a boiler?

No. A heat pump works by using hot water and natural methods of insulation. It doesn’t need a boiler, so you will not have to buy another unit.


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