ground source heat pump

How does a Ground Source Heat Pump work?

Ground Source Heating is one of the most important steps towards a sustainable future. It is a heating solution that uses natural heat to replace traditional forms of heating. Ground Source Heating starts with a borehole, and that’s where Dragon Drilling comes in. Although we aren’t installing the remainder of the pump, our team is well versed in how a Ground Source Heat pump can help both domestic and commercial properties.


There are two kinds of Ground Source Heat Pumps; those that use a trench and those that use a borehole. By using a borehole, you are able to decrease the impact on the land you’re installing in, and tap into a more stable source of heat than a trench.


How does it work?

The sun radiates heat into the earth throughout the day. Although on the surface, the temperature fluctuates, the temperature a few metres down is around a steady 10°C all year around. This is the heat that is used by a Ground Source Heat Pump to power the heat it generates.


Installing a ground source heat pump is a team effort. We work with MCS accredited heat engineers throughout the country and once they have specified a heat pump based on the property needs then our geologists can study the ground conditions of the area and determine drilling depths. Often multiple boreholes are needed at site. It is vitally important to use a fully accredited installer as if the system is not designed correctly then it can fail.


Once the borehole has been drilled by our qualified personnel then we install a closed feed loop of pipe that’s full of a mixture of water and antifreeze. This liquid circulates in the constant temperature below, absorbing its warmth before going through a heat exchanger which extracts the absorbed heat and transfers it to a heat pump which is then able to heat your home and water.


Once your ground source heating boreholes have been installed it’s non-invasive and people often chose to turf over them as no further maintenance is required. The heat pump itself is usually about the size of a fridge and so takes up minimal space inside a property. People often house them in their garages. Although it can’t be considered a fully carbon neutral solution as the pump requires electricity to run, a good Ground Source Heat Pump will generate more energy than it uses. Typically for every 1kW of electricity inputted to the pump it will generate 4kW of heat.


It’s for this reason that the government incentivises Ground Source Heat Pumps with their Renewable Heat Incentive. With this, you’re able to access payback over a 7 or 20 year period depending if the installation is domestic or commercial and gain income from the energy it generates.


If you’d like to learn more about the Renewable Heat Incentive, speak with a member of the Dragon Drilling team. We’ll also be able to advise you on installing a Ground Source Heat Pump and put you in contact with a great team of installation experts who’ll ensure an efficient solution.

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