Geothermal heat pump systems have lower operating costs, lower maintenance costs, lower life cycle costs, increased reliability, and greater comfort than alternative cooling and heating systems. In this section we will discuss their many advantages.
In most cases, experience indicates that the geothermal heat pump will be the choice with the lowest overall costs throughout the life of the system; in other words, the lowest life cycle costs. In many cases, it will be the system with the lowest cost to buy and install, i.e., the lowest first cost.
Since it can be installed in a portion of an equipment room or small closet, it gives owners more usable space. Heat pumps offer a high degree of design flexibility since they come in a variety of sizes and configurations. In retrofit situations, they can replace rooftop equipment or a central chiller and boiler. If building occupancy or zone loads change, additional equipment or larger heat pumps can be added.
Recent studies have also indicated geothermal closed loop systems have significantly lower maintenance costs over other heat pump systems. Part of this is understandable when you consider there is no outdoor equipment.
The industry standards set by the Air-Conditioning and Refrigeration Institute are another major benefit. ARI is a voluntary non-profit organization which establishes standards for testing and rating products, and certifies the performance ratings that its participants publish. This provides consumers with easy to find and consistent information on choosing equipment.