The amount of heat that is produced by the ground is actually quite amazing. You may not think it when you touch it, but there is enough warmth there to heat your home throughout the year. Ground source heat pumps work to access this warmth and utilise it so that your home can be heated. You may have been considering having one of these pumps installed in your home, and it can be a great option. However, it is important to remember that there are certain costs involved when it comes to the installation. Make sure you read this page carefully, as well as the listed prices and savings.
The main feature you will find in a ground source heat pump is the pipework. There is usually around 100m of it, all of which is buried in loops in trenches, or in one (or multiple) vertical boreholes. Once the pipework has been buried, the surface of the disturbed ground can be returned to use for its original purpose – so a driveway, garden, or even a field that is used to grow crops. In addition to this, you would never even know the pipe was underground, so there is no disturbance to the land.
Usually, antifreeze is pumped through the piping, although other liquids can be used. This then absorbs the warmth that can be found in the ground. A compressor that is located in the main unit of the heat pump raises the temperature of the fluid before a heat exchanger transfers the warmth to a separate body of water. This then circulates around the central heating system. The water, now cooled, is then pumped back out to the buried piping, and the cycle restarts, repeating itself constantly to keep your home warm.
The ground source heat pump does still generate carbon emissions, however, because the entire system uses electricity as a source of power. Although, the emissions produced are less than those associated with conventional forms of heating. It is also possible to connect it to a renewable source of energy, such as a wind turbine, to produce power.
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When you install and run a ground source heat pump, you can expect it to cost around £655 per year to run and around £13,000 to have installed. However, the prices do tend to vary depending on the size of the installation as well as any additional work that may be required.
When it comes to figuring out how much you will save, the type of fuel that you will be replacing plays a huge role. The table below demonstrates this and is based on four bedroom detached house.
|Fuel replaced||Savings £/year||Savings CO2/year|
The payback period can also be difficult to predict, especially as it is so dependent on things like the fuel you will be replacing as well as the size of the home that you will be using the system for. On top of this, it also depends on whether or not you qualify for things like Renewable Heat Incentive payments and how you will be using the heat.
The government incentive available is known as Renewable Heat Incentive, and it is there to provide a little extra financial help. If you decide to use the scheme, it is estimated that you will be provided with an additional £2,000 to £4,000 per year. This is a great incentive that could definitely help when it comes to earning a little extra income.
The great thing about ground source heat pumps is that the maintenance is actually incredibly minimal. The system is closed and airtight, so it is tightly sealed, hence the need for very little maintenance. However, an annual service and general check of the pump is strongly advised, just to make sure that everything is in working order.
You should always ask your installer to show you how to adjust the controls and features while they are setting it up, as well as provide you with a manual. This means that you won’t need to call them out if you get stuck and you will have better control of the system. The heat pumps last for around 20-years, and the ground collectors have an expected lifespan of 70-years – which is amazing.
However, if something does go wrong at any point, make sure you call out an engineer that has an F Gas certification. This way you are guaranteed someone who knows what they are doing and understands the system.
Want to Know More?
Have you found yourself interested in ground source heat pumps? If you want to know more then make sure you head to our marketplace where you can find our full range of products, each with the relevant information. Or simply give us a ring using the number at the top of this page and have a chat.
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