We work with geothermal in Davison, MI, and we’re big proponents of homeowners choosing to have a geothermal heat pump installed for their year-round home comfort. Geothermal heat pumps work on the same principle as standard air-source heat pumps, which is that they use the circulation of refrigerant to move heat from one place to another. In hot weather, the heat pump pushes heat out of the house. In cold weather, it reverses direction and pushes heat into the house.
The difference between air-source heat pumps and geothermal (or “ground-source”) heat pumps is the medium they use for heat transfer outside of the house. The air-source heat pump draws or releases heat into the air, and the geothermal system uses the ground at least six feet below the frost line.
Many homeowners are concerned about whether a geothermal heat pump will do the job they want from it during the winter. Do they need to have a back-up heater to help the system supply enough heat?