Quantum Energy Solutions is a leading provider of geothermal heating and cooling systems for new homes in Southern Ontario

How It Works

What is geothermal energy and how does it work?  As noted previously, geothermal energy is thermal energy stored in the earth. The fundamentals of a ground source geoexchange system are simple. Our process begins by drilling a series of deep holes or excavating long trenches under the property and laying lengths of HDPE (high density polyethylene) geothermal pipe into the ground.  These circuits of pipes are then brought inside the house and connected to one or more heat pumps.

Geothermal Heating and Cooling Installation

At the heart of every geothermal heating and cooling system there is a heat pump. A single heat pump replaces the need for both a furnace and an outdoor AC unit. Compared to other types of heating equipment geothermal heat pumps are very efficient machines. Efficiency in the heating industry is expressed and defined as the coefficient of performance (COP) which for heat pumps is typically in the range 3 – 5, meaning that this equipment provide 3 – 5 units of heat for each unit of electricity used.

During the heating season the earth is used as the energy source to provide the thermal energy needed to maintain your home at a comfortable indoor temperature. During the summer the same underground system uses the earth as a heat sink (depository) to remove excess heat from the indoor environment and keep the house cool and conditioned.

If you were to measure the temperature of the earth at a depth of 3 – 4 metres (about 10 – 12 feet) deep or deeper below the surface you would find the temperature to be consistently close to 12* C (55* F) at any time of year. Since the temperature of the surrounding earth holding the geothermal pipes remains relatively constant throughout the year, the earth can reliably heat your home even in the middle of winter with a thick covering of snow on the ground.

After the HDPE pipes are buried in the ground they are filled with water that contains a 20% solution of ethanol antifreeze mixed in. As specified by CSA 448 B code requirements, this creates an efficient heat exchange fluid that is circulated through the pipes and delivers energy back to the heat pump(s) in the house. This collected energy is concentrated into a useable form by the heat pump through a thermodynamic process known as the Carnot cycle.

It is important to note that each heat pump installed replaces the need for both a furnace and an outdoor AC unit. In larger homes we routinely install several heat pumps and by doing so eliminate the need for a matching number of furnaces and air conditioning units. With a geothermal heating and cooling system there is no equipment outside the house which also means no noise, nothing unsightly to look at and no seasonal equipment to maintain.

If your goal is to live in a highly energy efficient home then we should talk.

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