Ground source heat pump systems harness natural heat stored underground or underwater. They achieve this by pumping cold fluid via a closed loop of underground pipes which then extracts energy in the form of heat from the surrounding ground. Once this heat circulates back to the heat pump, an electrically driven compressor turns this low grade heat into high grade heat suitable for use in home heating or domestic hot water.
A well installed heat pump should produce around four times as much heat as it requires in electrical energy. This means that compared to properties heated via Oil, LPG or in some cases mains gas, substantial reductions in annual heating bills are feasible.
The key to ground source heat pumps is that the collector is designed so that the energy extracted is able to be replaced – i.e the system is sustainable. There has to be sufficient quantity of pipes, buried at the correct depth and over a large enough area otherwise over time the heat pump will cost more and more to run as ground temperatures drop.