Ground Source Heat Pump (GSHP)
Heat your home and water with an energy efficient ground source heat pump (GSHP).
A loop of pipes, also known as a ground loop, are buried in your garden and filled up with water and antifreeze. The flowing water/antifreeze solution absorbs heat from the earth surrounding the pipes and flows to an electric compressor system where it is slightly heated up. Heat can from there be supplied to your radiators, underfloor heating, warm air heating systems and water pumps. The heat delivered to these appliances is at a lower temperature than that supplied by traditional gas and electricity heating, but as it is taken to the appliances over longer periods of time providing a constant, more energy efficient heat source.
- Lower fuel bills
- Lower home carbon emissions
- Highly energy efficient
- Low maintenance
- Heats your home and provides hot water
- No fuel deliveries as there would be with a storage tank
- May be able to claim payments from the Renewable Heat Incentive (RHI)
Coefficient of Performance (COP)
The Coefficient of Performance or COP is a ratio used to work out how useful a heating or cooling system is. A higher COP ratio means that operating costs are lower; a desired feature for heat pumps.
GSHPs of a high quality can have a COP of up to 1:8. This means that for each kilowatt of electricity used to run a GSHP, they can deliver up to 8 kilowatts of heat.
It is important to note that GSHPs may not be as energy efficient if not used correctly. As GSHPs steadily produce heat at low temperatures, it may be difficult to quickly heat your house up. It is therefore recommended leaving the heating on in cooler winter months for a constant comfortable temperature. If you are replacing conventional electric heating, leaving your heating on using a GSHP will still lower fuel bills.
The ground loops used as part of the GSHP are combined with underground pile foundations. Pile foundations can be installed vertically which is the preferred option for larger projects or if space is limited yet suitable for drilling equipment. When installing vertical piping, soil is bored out of the ground and a reinforcement cage is inserted for protection and support of the pipes. It is important that the ground GSHPs are installed in is free of rocks and boulders.
For properties with a larger garden, the ground loops can be installed in shallow trenches rather than in a borehole. These trenches are usually about 1 to 2 metres deep and can fit multiple pipes. These horizontal ground loops are easier to install and are therefore usually the cheaper option. Both vertical and horizontal ground loops are filled with heat transfer fluid (water with antifreeze) ensuring your GSHP can be used year round.