Heating and Cooling with Geothermal Energy

Getting Started

Once you’ve decided to use geothermal drilling to keep your home warm in winter and cool in summer, you’ll need to take a few steps:

1. Contact an HVAC Contractor

The first thing to do is contact a qualified HVAC (heating, ventilating and air conditioning) contractor. Your HVAC contractor should be familiar with geothermal technology and be accredited with the International Ground Source Heat Pump Association (IGSHPA).

Feel free to contact us for a list of recommended HVAC contractors in your area.

2. Obtain a Heat loss Calculation

The most common question people ask us is, “Based on my home’s square footage, how many wells do I need and how much will it cost?” Square footage does not matter in this case: Wells are sized using a “heat loss” calculation, which is a measurement of the home’s efficiency.

To obtain a heat loss calculation, your HVAC contractor will use a procedure known as Manual J. Once your HVAC contractor performs a Manual J study, he or she will give you an accurate heat loss value. That number will be in thousands of BTUs. Every 12,000 BTUs indicates about one ton of heat loss for the building. A typical residence has an average heat loss of five to seven tons. Keep in mind that this is an average and not necessarily what your home needs.

The other important factor, decided by the HVAC contractor and the heat pump manufacturer, is the size, depth and number of the heat pumps to be installed in your home. A heat pump has a rating of efficiency. That number is called the COP, or coefficient of performance. In the early days of geothermal heat pumps, with a COP rating of 2 or 3, it was rule of thumb to use 150 feet of drilling for every ton of equipment installed in the home. As heat pumps became more and more efficient, their COP ratings grew to 4 and 5. Now, for every unit of energy put into a heat pump, it returns 4 or 5 units back into your home. While the heat pump can accept or reject more heat into the earth, linear footage must be added to help absorb that temperature. On average, the wells need to be 180-200 feet per ton.

3. Contact Connecticut Wells

Once you have a heat loss calculation, email our Sales department or call us at (800) 344-7989. We’ll be happy to send you a free written proposal on your ground source geothermal exchange system.