Bartels Heating & Cooling Blog : Archive for the ‘Geothermal’ Category

Reasons to Consider a Geothermal System for Cooling

Monday, May 25th, 2015

Homeowners have more choices than ever when it comes to choosing and installing a whole-home air conditioning system. There are so many choices that it can be confusing to know which type is the best fit for your home and your needs. One of the best ways to determine which system is best for your home is to understand the basics of how a given system works. Today we’re going to talk about geothermal systems, and how they can both cool and heat your home in Oxford, DE.

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How Efficient Is a Geothermal Heat Pump?

Friday, March 20th, 2015

One of the latest trends in energy efficient heating and cooling is the use of geothermal energy. Geothermal heat pumps draw from the thermal energy in the earth to transfer heat to the air in your home for heating, and to move heat back to the earth in the summer. If you decide you want a new geothermal heat pump for your home in West Chester, OH, contact the friendly professionals at Bartels Heating & Cooling. If you’re still concerned about whether geothermal energy is worth the investment, read on.

Many people wonder how much money they will save over time. Of course, we cannot give a definitive answer, as this depends on usage, the size of your household, and a number of other factors, including the cost of electricity in your area. Geothermal heat pumps do still use some amount of electricity in order to move around the air, but this is minimal when compared to the traditional air-source split system air conditioners.

If you had an older conventional split-system AC, then you will likely notice energy savings right away. When you dig deep enough into the ground, the earth remains at a constant temperature, usually around 55 degrees Fahrenheit. This means they may be more effective in cooler weather than heat pumps which pull thermal energy from the air. Water or a water-refrigerant blend moves through an underground loop system to absorb this energy, which is then transferred to the refrigerant in your heat pump.

Furthermore, this system uses far fewer of the earth’s natural resources, which makes it a great system for those who are at all environmentally conscious. The initial cost maybe high, but over a number of years, the savings should compensate for the additional cost. But all of this is only true if you choose a professional for installation. Professional sizing and installation is a vital step in ensuring efficiency and performance. If the unit is over- or undersized, you may use up more energy than you need.

Call the friendly experts at Bartels Heating & Cooling to learn how you can get geothermal heating and cooling in West Chester, OH.

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Can You Add Zone Control to a Geothermal System?

Wednesday, August 20th, 2014

Geothermal heat pumps become more and more popular every year as homeowners discover their energy-saving efficiency and reliable performance, regardless of the temperature outside.

Homeowners have also learned about the advantages of installing a zone control system for their heaters and air conditioners. Zoning permits them to manipulate which rooms in a house receive conditioned air. This allows for a more comfortable environment and also saves energy.

But can geothermal systems and zone controls go together? Yes. We’ll explain further below.

For the answers to all your question about geothermal installation in West Chester, OH, call up the experienced team at Bartels Heating & Cooling. We’ve served Southwest Ohio with heating and cooling solutions since 1973.

Zone Control IS Compatible with Geothermal Heat Pumps

There is no reason that a zone control system can’t work for a home that uses a geothermal heat pump for its heating an cooling. The reason is that zone controls operate in a way completely independent of how a geothermal system operates.

Installers create zone control by attaching dampers hooked up to individual thermostats into the air ducts. The dampers can open or close off a room vent to airflow. As long as your home uses ductwork to distribute air—no matter the type of heater or air conditioner—you can install zone control for it.

The reason this works for geothermal is that geothermal systems operate just like any other heat pump when it comes to their interior parts. The underground loops use the ground for heat exchange, but the indoor components use the air. The conditioned air, either heated or cooled, is sent into the ventilation system with a blower fan, as with other heat pumps. The geothermal loops have nothing to do with the ventilation system where the zone control dampers are installed.

So you can add zone control to any heating or cooling system, geothermal or standard air-source, as long as it uses ductwork to distribute the conditioned air.

Although zone control is easiest to fit into the ventilation system during new heat pump installation, existing ducts can undergo a retro-fit for zoning at any time. If you have a large home with rooms that often do not need heating or cooling, you should investigate zone control as an excellent energy-saving option. Contact Bartels Heating & Cooling for help with zone control. You should also contact us if you are interested in geothermal installation in West Chester, OH. We can take care of both installations at the same time, and you’ll have double the energy-efficiency benefits.

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Will Geothermal Installation Really Save Money?

Thursday, July 31st, 2014

Here at Bartels Heating & Cooling, we are strong supporters of using geothermal power to heat and cool homes. We often advise that our customers look into installing a geothermal heat pump, not only because it is beneficial for the environment, tapping into a clean and renewable source of energy, but also because it will benefit their bank account in the long run with efficient performance that surpasses most other home comfort systems.

Geothermal heat pumps require more installation work than standard air-source heat pumps, and not every property is suited to them. However, if you find that geothermal installation in Hamilton, OH is ideal for your home’s heating and cooling needs, you should definitely give the idea serious consideration.

But Can I Really Save Money This Way?

Yes! We’re aware that geothermal heat pumps have higher upfront costs to install: they require drilling, digging, and more labor and materials than standard air-source heat pump installation. However, the payback period is short; you will start to save money on your utility bills during the first year, and depending on weather conditions and the amount you use your heat pump, it can take as little as 5 years to return your initial investment. When you consider that on average the loops of a geothermal system can last for more than 50 years, the savings you’ll receive will pay for the cost of installation 10 times over.

You don’t have to take our word on this: the information comes direct from the U.S. Department of Energy. Because a geothermal system uses the stable heat of the earth for its heat exchange, instead of the constantly changing temperature of the air, it performs more efficiently. The U.S. DOE has found that heat pumps on the coldest winter days have efficiencies of 300-600%, as opposed to air-source heat pump efficiencies of 175-250%.

To make sure that you receive the maximum energy-saving performance from a geothermal heat pump, you must have an experienced contractor handle the installation work. Technicians with the proper training will know the right place to bury the ground loops and the correct loop configuration that will allow the system to perform at peak efficiency. The geothermal technicians will also do the job fast and cause as little disruption to your daily life as possible.

Call Bartels Heating & Cooling to get started with geothermal installation in Hamilton, OH. We will send a geothermal specialist to look over your home and property to determine if a ground-source heat pump is ideal, and how best to install it. If geothermal is the right path, you can trust to our NATE-certified technicians to handle the installation work fast and right, leaving you with decades of clean, reliable, and money-saving heating and cooling.

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How Do Geothermal Systems Work?

Thursday, July 10th, 2014

Here is the great secret of geothermal power: if dig down a mere 10 feet beneath the frost line, the Earth’s temperature remains at a steady 55° F. That’s either a “cool” temperature (if you have a blazing hot summer day above) or a “warm” one (if there’s a deep freeze happening above). Either way, it’s a reliable temperature for whatever your home needs to keep it comfortable throughout the year, and you can access this power using a geothermal heat pump.

We think that using a geothermal system in Hamilton, OH is an excellent idea for year-round comfort. At Bartels Heating & Cooling, we’ve installed many geothermal systems that have helped people achieve reliable comfort as well as energy savings. If you think that geothermal may be the best comfort system for your home, give us a call and set up an appointment with us today.

How Geothermal Systems Heat and Cool Your Home

Home geothermal systems are heat pumps, which means they circulate refrigerant between indoor and outdoor elements to move heat from one location to another. To supply a home with heat, the heat pump moves heat from the outside element and releases it to the inside. To cool down a home, the heat pump absorbs heat from inside and releases it outside. Standard heat pumps are “air-source,” which means they absorb and release heat using the air. But geothermal heat pumps are “ground-source”: for half the exchange, they use the steady energy levels of the Earth.

The indoor sections of a geothermal heat pump are similar to those of an air-source one. A coil with refrigerant either absorbs or releases heat, depending on the mode, and a blower circulates the conditioned air thorough the home. However, there is no outdoor “unit.” Instead, the refrigerant (water with anti-freeze in it) circulates through plastic loops buried in the ground deep enough to access the steady 55°F. In heating mode, the loops absorb heat from the ground to take it indoors, and in cooling mode they deposit heat from indoors into the ground.

Because geothermal heat pumps don’t have to combat scorching hot or icy cold air temperatures, they work far more efficiently than other heat pumps. The U.S. Department of Energy estimates that a geothermal system can operate 3 to 6 times more efficiently than standard heat pumps. The ground loops have astonishing longevity as well, lasting longer than 50 years.

However, all these advantages won’t mean much if your home isn’t suited to geothermal power. A house requires sufficient space for the coils, and the soil must be the right condition. Before making a choice about heat pumps, call Bartels Heating & Cooling and talk to our specialists in geothermal in Hamilton, OH. We will find the best comfort solution for your home.

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How Geothermal Systems Are Good for the Environment

Friday, April 18th, 2014

We encourage many of our clients to consider installing a geothermal heat pump to manage their needs for heating and cooling their homes. These systems offer numerous advantages to homeowners: energy-efficient operation that saves money every year, immense longevity, quiet operation, and reliable heating power no matter the outdoor temperature during winter.

There are reasons beyond personal comfort and savings to look into geothermal power for your home. Geothermal energy benefits the environment. When you invest in geothermal in Fairfield, OH, you are also making an investment in the rest of the planet. This is an ideal example of “thinking globally, acting locally.”

We can’t fit into this space all the advantages of going geothermal. Call our installation specialists at Bartels Heating & Cooling to find out more and receive answers to all your questions.

Geothermal Systems and the Environment: A Great Partnership

Let’s first look at the very large scale—geothermal power plants vs. coal power plants—to show the improvement that geothermal power can make. A geothermal power plant uses 483 square yards of land per gigawatt hour, while a coal plant uses 4,344 square yards per gigawatt hour. Squeeze this down to your own home, and you can already see how much more efficient geothermal is.

There are two specific reasons your smaller geothermal heat pump can aid the environment:

  • Renewable energy: Fossil fuels, such as oil and natural gas, have limits… but the power of the Earth’s molten core is always present. As you draw heat energy from the ground, you do not “use it up.” It’s always there as long as the planet core is burning. (Should it stop, we’ll have bigger problems on our hands than running heat pumps.) With a geothermal system, you’ll reduce our planet’s dependence on limited fuel sources and instead allow the planet itself to provide you with a limitless resource.
  • Clean energy: The air pollution that endangers the ozone layer and contributes to global warming comes from the emissions of burning fuel. Geothermal systems have almost zero emissions of any kind of harmful gas, such as carbon dioxide. Geothermal systems leave very little pollution behind them.

Geothermal energy has a bright and constantly growing future. When you have a geothermal heat pump installed in your home, you’re riding the next wave of energy technology for the benefit of Planet Earth.

Keep Your Geothermal Power Working for the Planet…And You

A malfunctioning geothermal heating and cooling system won’t do much good for anyone, so make sure that you keep up regular maintenance on your home’s system. Schedule yearly inspections and tune-ups, and always stay atop of repairs.

To handle all your needs for Fairfield, OH geothermal heat pumps, look to Bartels Heating & Cooling. We employee EPA- and NATE-certified technicians so you will receive the best work possible. Give us a call today to schedule your next service appointment.

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Fairfield, OH Air Conditioning Repair Question: My Geothermal System Won’t Cool

Thursday, August 1st, 2013

Geothermal systems use a series of pipes buried in the soil to transfer heat between the ground and your house. In the summertime, the system absorbs heat out from your building and discharges it in the soil. In the winter, the process is reversed, as the system absorbs heat from the ground in order to warm your home. In Fairfield, OH, air conditioning specialists like Bartel’s Heating & Cooling have geothermal system experts available to address problems when they arise. If your geothermal system won’t cool for some reason, it’s time to give them a call.

Problems with a geothermal system can stem from a number of sources. Closed-loop systems use a heat exchanger to transfer heat between the antifreeze that circulates underground and the refrigerant in the heat pump, which heat or cools the air that is circulated in your home. A leak of either component could affect the system’s ability to cool your house. A trained professional can recharge the refrigerant or add additional levels of antifreeze, as wells as identifying the source of the leak and sealing it up.

Open loop systems, on the other hand, often use water in the underground loops; if the water flow is disrupted or cut off by damaged components within the system itself, it will impact the system’s ability to generate cool air. Dirty coils and filters in the heat pump could interfere with cool air as well, disrupting the flow of air and possibly affecting the pressure elsewhere in the system. It may also be a problem with the thermostat itself, which usually needs to be set to cool the house in the summer and heat the house in the winter. If it hasn’t been set properly, it may not be circulating cool air like it should.

Regardless of the causes, a non-functioning geothermal system requires trained experts to properly diagnose and repair. Bartel’s Heating & Cooling offers comprehensive geothermal maintenance and repair services. Our professional staff can diagnose your problem quickly, and we pride ourselves on customer satisfaction.

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West Chester, OH Geothermal Heating Guide: How Geothermal Works

Monday, March 11th, 2013

As its name suggests, geothermal heating systems use the thermal energy of the ground beneath your property to heat and cool your home. If you’re looking to replace your system with an energy-efficient, year-round, eco-friendly alternative to conventional heating and cooling systems in West Chester, OH, look no further than geothermal installation with Bartels Heating & Cooling. We offer comprehensive services that will not only get you up and running, but will also maintain your system for years to come. In this post, we’d like to introduce you to the basics of geothermal, so that you can make smart decisions when it comes to your home. For more information, call Bartels today!

So how does geothermal work? It is basically a heat pump attached to a set of underground piping. While your system setup will vary according to your home and property, the basic components are the same. Your geothermal system will either be installed using a relatively shallow, horizontal bed of piping, or a set of deep vertical wells, with piping as deep as 100 feet. It all depends on the soil composition of your ground, as well as where your home sits on your land. The underground piping is typically made out of high-density polyethylene (HDPE), which circulates a water or water-refrigerant mixture. This is known as the “earth loop.”

The geothermal heat pump inside your home pressurizes the refrigerant and circulates it through the underground loop. During the heating season, the piping absorbs the thermal energy of the underground piping and brings it back up to your home, and your heat pump then creates warm air to be dispersed through your ductwork. The great thing about geothermal is that it also works the other way. During the cooling season, it reverses this same circulation process to air condition your home. The whole system relies on the consistently moderate temperature of the earth.

A geothermal system is an excellent way to heat and cool your home. More and more homeowners are making the switch to this simple, innovative, and eco-friendly home comfort solution. Call Bartels Heating & Cooling today for more information! 

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