Secrets of a geothermal heating and cooling system

When it comes to green homes, comfort is one of the greatest concerns for homeowners.

Geothermal heating and cooling uses the energy from the earth to manage the temperature inside the home as a supplement to a furnace or other electric heating systems, for example.

We are installing a geothermal system at our NetZero Waterfront Project. Here is how the system operates in a residential home.

The basics of a geothermal heating and cooling system

A geothermal heating and cooling system runs on a ground source heat pump. These heat pumps are placed underground, linking your house to the ground or water around it.

The earth and water store thermal energy from the sun. In fact, the ground stores 47% of the heat from the sunshine that hits it. Heat pumps make use of these heat reservoirs, as well as the ground’s and water’s ability to store thermal energy.

Essentially, when your house is colder than desired, the ground source heat pump collects heat from surrounding ground or water. This heat is then moved into your home via the heat pump, to bring the temperature up. When your house is hotter than desired, the pump collects thermal energy from inside the home, pumping it into the ground or water.

Not only is this type of geothermal heating and cooling system green and renewable, but it saves you money by greatly reducing your Hydro bill.

How would one go about building a geothermal heating and cooling system? Let us walk you through one of our projects!

Our geothermal heating and cooling system project

The project rundown

Architect: Grant Architecture Studio

Size: 6,600 square feet.

Start Date: September 2017

The journey

One of our most exciting builds is our NetZero Project in South Surrey. The NetZero Project is a home with a number of green initiatives, including a geothermal heating and cooling system.

We began with a beautiful property right on the water.

Before installing a geothermal heating and cooling system, it’s vital to test the surrounding ground, making sure it can sustain a geothermal heating and cooling system. Therefore, in order to confirm that the composition and density of the soil at our site is appropriate for a geothermal heating and cooling system, we first drilled test holes.

Once the geothermal engineers confirmed that the area could sustain a heating and cooling system, the highly skilled professionals from Sonic Drilling drilled 8 holes (or geothermal wells), each 250 feet deep.

These initiatives together will make this project a great addition to our extensive Low Energy Home portfolio in BC.

Once the project is complete we will be applying for a Net Zero Energy label from the CHBA , achieve Step 5 of the BC energy Step code and, of course the ENERGY STAR ® certification which forms the basis of our minimum standards for every new home we build. (Learn more about ENERGY STAR ® here)

Want to know more about our journey with this build thus far? Catch up on our NetZero Project! Looking to build a Low energy, healthy and comfortable home? Drop us a line to discuss your options.