Question of the week: Is ground source heating the same as geothermal heating?

This is the first in a series of updates we will post in response to questions asked by our customers or prospects visiting our showroom.

It’s a common misconception as the expression ‘geothermal’ has been used quite widely and out of context, but the answer is ‘No, ground source heating is not geothermal.'

Ground source heating uses underground solar heat stored just below the surface in soil, rock or water - which is at a fairly constant average temperature about 1.2m below the surface, of between 4° and 12°C (or more specifically, 9° - 10°C in Yorkshire) - and converts this energy in a heat exchanger into heat that can be used to heat your home or business, either via water-based radiators or under-floor heating, and your hot water system.

Geothermal heating is popular in certain countries, such as Sweden, Iceland and New Zealand, where there is volcanic activity close the earth’s surface and where, as a result, the underlying ground rock and ground water temperatures are higher than the desired target temperature for the home or business. A geothermal heating system taps directly into this energy source and is therefore a highly efficient source as no energy conversion is required.

A ground source heat pump or, alternatively, an air source heat pump is more likely to be the solution for a domestic or commercial application here in the UK, and has many advantages, not least payments under the government's Renewable Heat Incentive (RHI) scheme which was extended to homeowners in April 2014.

If you'd like to know more about the right system to suit your circumstances and environment, please contact us at Yorkshire Heat Pumps, using the contact form on the website, to arrange a no-commitment, initial consultation.

CLICK HERE to find out more about the Renewable Heat Incentive scheme.

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