Ground Loops in Green Bay, WI, Geothermal Applications

You’ve just gotten or are looking into buying a a new heating and cooling system. Maybe you’re considering a new Geothermal HVAC. If so, you very likely want to know a little bit more about how one works.

Geothermal HVACs take consistent temperature from the ground to put hot or cool air into your home. This works because of an underground system called a geothermal ground loop.

Ground loops are basically just an underground pipe system. Various basic sorts of ground loop systems are used for heating and cooling most residential and commercial buildings.

It works when antifreeze fluid travels through these plastic pipes to transfer heat fast and efficiently down to a heat pump in your home.

There are four different types of ground loops: Open Loop, Pond Loop, Horizontal Loop and Vertical Loop. These are divvied up into two categories categories: either they’re open loop systems or closed loop systems. The appropriate system for you is dependent on the specific structure and its environment. Household systems typically use vertical or horizontal loops.

Below are further explanations of each kind of ground loop.

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

Vertical ground loops are used most often in residences because, unlike horizontal loops, they don’t have to have a significant amount of space. They’re set in place by drilling small-diameter holes in the ground that extend 100-400 feet deep. Then pipes are placed into the holes and connected under ground to form the vertical loop. Next, extra pipes are attached that channel fluid to the indoor system to transfer the desired temperature from the ground.

A horizontal system requires a lot more space but is generally not as costly because it just uses 2 straight pipes set 6 inches in the ground over an area of ¼ to ¾ acre.

In order to have a pond loop system, it should go without saying that you must be in close proximity to a pond, lake, pond, or well. Coils are installed vertically and fastened to the bottom of the water source. Water is then transported through more pipes beneath the earth to a pump, where the heat is withdrawn and cool water is put back into the pond.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 in no way be be acidic or else pipes will decay and filters will need replacing often.

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

Most often, used water is taken care off in either of these ways: through surface drainage or water re-injection. In returning the water back to the earth, it is important to note that pollution is not a by-product. The only difference in water that’s processed through a geothermal heat pump is an insignificant change in temperature.

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