Geothermal Heating Pros and Cons
As an increasing number of Canadians strive to live cleaner greener lifestyles, more
alternative energy sources have begun making their way into homeowners’ everyday
lives. One particular topic that’s become a hot topic in certain parts of the country is
geothermal heating. Before we take look at geothermal heating pros and cons, let’s first
learn a bit more about what it actually is.
Geothermal heating takes direct use of the natural heat retained within the Earth and
applies it to heating applications. In household applications, a pipe filled with fluid is
placed into the ground to absorb the heat from the earth. The heated fluid then flows
through the heat exchange, which then extracts the heat and delivers it throughout the
home through a forced air ventilation system installed within the walls, floor or ceilings
of the home.
The Advantages and Disadvantages of Geothermal Heating
Some Advantages Include:
Geothermal is Environmentally Friendly
The use of renewable energy is considered a very big plus and is the primary
motivation for many proponents of geothermal energy.
Can be set up for extremely efficient operation
Because geothermal heat pumps use the constant temperature of the earth
rather than the outside air temperature, the system is able to reach high
efficiencies, even on the coldest winter nights.
Low Maintenance and Long Life
Geothermal systems (when correctly installed) can last anywhere from 20 to 25
years. In order to preserve their longevity, regular maintenance of the system
should be performed, and ducts/filters should be kept clean.
Very costly to install
Estimates have priced the total cost of a complete installed residential system in
a range anywhere from $15,000 to $30,000.
Installation is highly disruptive
Heavy drilling and digging equipment are required to install a geothermal
system, and may not be possible on some lots.
Some environmental drawbacks
While the use of sustainable energy is what highlights geothermal heating, there
are some factors that prevent it from being completely environmentally
positive. The first is the use of copper piping, which is used to circulate the
liquid. These pipes can corrode over time, and this erosion can cause the fluid to
Of course this is only a small piece of the geothermal conversation. As an increasing
number of homeowners begin to look at it as a viable heating and cooling source, we
will be right there, to continue the conversation, and answer any questions that you