The term 'Ground Source Heat Pumps' refers to a complete heating system which incorporates underground piping, the pump itself and the method through which heat and/or hot water is distributed around a building. A ground source heat pump or GSHP utilizes a coil of pipe beneath the ground through which a mixture of water and antifreeze is circulated. The mixture is warmed by natural heat from the earth to a certain level and then it is passed through a heat exchanger within a heat pump which increases the temperature ready for distribution. Ground source heat pumps reduce a building's carbon foot print, require little maintenance and owners of such a system can receive tax credits for their part in saving the environment.
The VAT rate on ground source heat pumps and the installation is at a reduced rate so Tax benefits will reduce the cost of the system and installation. A reputable GSHP installer will be aware of the type of work that attracts the lower rate of tax and adjust the charges accordingly. The renewable heat incentive scheme to be introduced in the UK in April 2011 is also thought to be considering a tax rate incentive for households using ground source heat pumps. The renewable heat incentive or RHI will pay for heat at a better rate than Renewable Energy Incentive scheme which covers energy produce by solar panels and wind turbines. The reason for the increased financial incentive for using ground source heat pump systems is said to be to offset the increased barriers involved when implementing the system, as GSHPs are less known than other types of renewable energy sources.
Apart from the potential ground source heat pump tax credit that could become available and the increased rate of payment for energy produced by a GSHP, energy savings are also possible. The level of savings achieved by a ground source heat pump will depend on several factors. The savings achieved by replacing old electric or coal heating systems with a GSHP is greater than if the original heating system is run by gas. In addition, GSHPs operate more efficiently via large radiators, warm air convector fans or underground heating systems and should be set to warm the air gradually rather than being set to the highest setting.
Insulation and Efficiency
Prior to installing any type of heating system, especially ground source heat pumps, it is of paramount importance to ensure that the building is energy efficient as it is far cheaper to save energy than it is to produce it. Make sure that insulation is optimum and energy saving methods are employed to improve the operation of thermostats and also look at ways to reduce energy consumption. As a concerned citizen of the world, take each step towards a new way of life where the benefits of energy are enjoyed and not wasted. That way, there is more chance of a shortage in energy sources occurring.
Higher financial incentives will be available to households using ground source heat pumps than to those using solar panels.