Ground Loops in East Tennessee, Tennessee, Geothermal Applications

You need a new heating and cooling system. Maybe you’re partial to the idea of a new Geothermal HVAC. Whatever the situation, you probably want to know a little more about how such a system works.

Geothermal HVACs variously cool and heat your home by extracting ground temperature. This works because of an underground system called a geothermal ground loop.

Ground loops are basically just an underground pipe system. There are various basic kinds of these systems that can be used for heating and cooling typical residential and commercial]26] buildings.

It works when antifreeze fluid goes through plastic pipes to transfer heat effectively and efficiently to a heat pump in the building.

Typically used are four different types of loops: Open Loop, Pond Loop, Horizontal Loop and Vertical Loop. All four are split into two distinct categories: either they’re open loop systems or closed loop systems. The right system for your home is determined by your building and its environment. Home systems usually use vertical or horizontal loops.

Below are further explanations of each type of ground loop.

Closed systems, which encompass vertical, horizontal, and pond loops, continuously move water through them.

Vertical ground loops are the most common type used residentially because, unlike horizontal loops, they don’t require much of space. They’re installed by drilling tight-diameter holes in the ground to a depth of 100-400 feet. Then pipes are driven into the holes and connected under ground to form the vertical loop. Next, additional pipes are attached that convey fluid to the indoor system to transfer the needed temperature from the ground.

In contrast to a vertical loop system, a horizontal system needs significantly more space but usually is less pricey since it uses 2 straight pipes set 6 inches in the ground within an area of ¼ to ¾ acre.

If you’re thinking of getting a pond loop system, you plainly must be close to a pond, lake, pond, or well. Coils are installed vertically and fastened to the bottom of the water source. Water is then transferred through more pipes belowground to a pump, where the heat is withdrawn and cool water is put back into the pond. However, in order for this system to work, the water can not be acidic or else pipes will corrode and filters will need to be replaced often.

The essential difference between open and closed looped systems is the open loop’s need for an ample source of groundwater, such as a well or pond. From there, it directly pumps water into the heat pump unit for use in heating and cooling your home or other structure.

Normally, used water is disposed off in either of the following ways: through surface drainage or water re-injection. In returning the water back to the earth, it must be said that pollution is not a by-product. The only difference in water that’s processed through a geothermal heat pump is a minor change in temperature.

Before installing an open loop system, it is essential to know whether a well or pond holds enough water to power your geothermal heat pump, and that it won’t exhaust a neighbor’s well source. Be sure to check with your local contractor on whether there’s enough water available to justify installing an open loop geothermal heating system.