No homeowner welcomes the sight of a dandelion in the lawn. Google spin-off, Dandelion, aims to change the way you think about having a dandelion – or more precisely – a Dandelion buried underneath your lawn. And the company is hoping that their Dandelion geothermal heat pump spreads like dandelions, especially in states like Massachusetts.
Dandelion announced earlier this year that it was bringing an affordable geothermal heating and cooling system to market. The systems aren’t available yet in the Boston area, but the company says it will offer a $20,000 heating and cooling unit soon.
If $20,000 sounds like a lot of money, it is. But consider that a geothermal heat pump could set you back a cool $100,000 less than a decade ago. The significant price drop can put geothermal heating into the reach of many homeowners, especially with rebates and incentives.
The company hopes to replace a lot of Massachusetts’ 800,000 residential heating oil and propane heat systems. Geothermal systems are 3 to 5 times more efficient than oil heat in terms of operating costs. In addition to reducing costs, the systems are more environmentally friendly.
How do geothermal and ductless heating and cooling differ?
Like an air source heat pump, geothermal systems provide both heating and cooling. Geothermal systems require ductwork, however. If your home doesn’t have ductwork (or can’t accommodate ducts), a ductless heating and cooling system may be the better option. Ductless heating and cooling systems offer the same heating and cooling benefits, along with high-efficiency operation.
A geothermal system uses a heat pump and buried pipes to move heat to or from your home. The pipes form a closed loop, and are filled with an antifreeze solution. Ground temperatures below the frost line remain in a relatively stable range between 50°F and 60°F year-round. In the summer, the heat pump transfers heat from the air in your home to the antifreeze solution. It then pumps the heated solution into the closed loop, where the heat dissipates into the earth. In the winter, the system takes the relatively warm solution and combines it with ambient heat to heat your home. Like ductless heating and cooling systems, a geothermal system can operate as a home’s primary or supplemental heat source.
Geothermal and ductless heating and cooling systems offer an economical alternative to more expensive heating methods. Ductless heating and cooling systems are less expensive to install and provide year-round comfort, even in below-zero temperatures.
If you’d like more information about ductless heating and cooling options, or you’d like to consider an oil-to-gas conversion, we’re here to help! Call us at Boston Standard Company at (617) 288-2911. We’ll be happy to discuss heating and cooling options that can save money on your utility bills all year!
Photo Credit: Sharon, via Flickr