Types of Geothermal Ground Loops

Types of Geothermal Ground Loops

Which ground loop system works best for your residence?

Geothermal ground loops are a crucial part of any geothermal heat pump system. These systems rely on pumps to harness heat from within the earth’s surface and use it to regulate a home or commercial building’s temperature. These systems require ground loops, which consist of polyethylene pipes buried underground, containing a water-ethanol mix to prevent freezing. Ground loops are generally available in three types of closed-loop systems, as well as open-loop systems, though open-loops are generally obsolete. The geographic location of your building, plus the soil, climate, and available land, all play a role in what the best ground-loop system is for your property. Here are the different types of geothermal ground loops available to you.


Horizontal ground loops are one of the most popular choices for geothermal heating systems since they’re the most cost-effective ground loops available. They require sufficient land to build them, but the trenches are simple to dig horizontally. Ones ranging from 100-400 feet long will need to be dug in order to lay pipes for these loops, which typically require 100-300 feet of trenching and 600-1200 feet of pipe per ton. These systems commonly appear in residential geothermal heating systems.


Vertical ground loops are generally a higher price point than horizontal ground loops because they are slightly more complicated to lay in. They mainly apply in urban areas where there is not as much available land, or where the soil is too shallow and difficult to penetrate. Drilling equipment is used to dig a 100-400 feet system vertically beneath a property instead of horizontally around a premise. The pipes laid into these holes are connected by a U-bend to create a closed loop. Because the earth’s temperature is higher and more stable deeper below the surface, vertical ground loops require less piping despite being slightly more expensive to install.


Pond/lake closed-loop systems are less common than horizontal or vertical ones. They require a body of water to be present on the property that meets specific requirements for minimum depth, volume, and quality. In this system, a pipe runs underground from the building to the body of water, coiled deep enough to prevent freezing. Since it is a closed-loop system just like horizontal and vertical ground loops, it will not affect any aquatic life in the body of water.


If you are concerned about high electricity bills in the winter, consider investing in geothermal heat pumps to help alleviate some of those costs. With many experienced technicians available, Ground Loop Heating & Air Conditioning, Inc. can solve all your air conditioning system problems. If you are interested in creating the most comfortable environment for your family to enjoy, contact Ground Loop Heating & Air Conditioning, Inc.today.

 You can reach us at 410-836-1706, or visit our website for more information! If you are interested in more information about geothermal heating and cooling systems, check us out on Twitter, YouTube, Facebook, and LinkedIn.

This entry was posted on Thursday, November 21st, 2019 at 10:56 am. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

Comments are closed.

Contact Us