GROUND SOURCE HEAT PUMPS

HOW HEAT FROM THE GROUND CAN KEEP MONEY IN YOUR POCKET

Installing a ground source heat pump is one way Manitobans are increasing their comfort and savings all year long.

Ground source heat pumps (sometimes called geothermal heat pumps) are a great way to increase the comfort level of any building without raising its environmental impact. Rather than burning fossil fuels or powering an electric element to create heat, ground source heat pumps move existing heat into or out of the ground through a loop of pipes.

“It’s a great way to use the resources in the ground,” says Michelle, who had a ground source heat pump installed at her home south of Treherne, Manitoba in October 2021. “We love the consistency of the temperature in the house now.”

Michelle hasn’t had a chance to try out the cooling mode yet, but she’s very happy with how thoroughly the ground source heat pump heats her home. With the electric furnace she used to have, the temperature would vary throughout her home with pockets of warm and cold air. This winter, her entire house was a consistent and comfortable temperature.

Paradise Geothermal installed the ground source heat pump at Michelle’s home. The company, based in Dunrea, Manitoba, has installed more than 1,000 ground source heat pumps for homes, churches, farm shops, and commercial buildings. Owner Gerard Paradis says other customers have also told him their comfort level was much higher with geothermal than other heating or cooling systems.

Besides the improved indoor comfort, ground source heat pumps can help people save money.

“If you are doing an electric heat retrofit, typically customers will see a reduction in their hydro bill by half,” Paradis says. “[The savings] add up over time.”

We also offer rebates of up to $2.50 per square foot of heated space to install a ground source heat pump to replace an existing electric or natural gas heating system.

“Efficiency Manitoba was very easy to deal with. Paradise Geothermal did the application, and I replied to the email and followed the very simple, straightforward process.”

– Michelle

INSTALLING A GROUND SOURCE HEAT PUMP

Paradis recommends following some key steps to make sure your ground source heat pump is safe, efficient, and effective for your home.

Before the installation process, your contractor needs to do a heat loss calculation on the building to get the sizing requirements for the heat pump. They’ll also determine the most suitable ground loop design.

For existing buildings, your contractor will make sure the ductwork can handle the increased airflow from the heat and the electrical panel can handle the load. This isn’t usually a concern for new buildings since the ductwork will be new and properly sized.

Your contractor will also check your property to see if anything is in the way, like trees, telephone poles, or cable, electrical, or gas lines.

Then you’re ready for installation.

The groundwork has to be done in the warmer months when the ground isn’t frozen and covered in snow. In Manitoba, that’s usually from April to the end of October, depending on the year.

WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT GROUND SOURCE HEAT PUMPS

Paradis says customers should keep in mind some yard work will be required after your ground source heat pump is installed. The installer will fill any holes they made, then you can get started on seeding grass or completing any other landscaping.

Once the ground source heat pump is in operation, Michelle recommends leaving the temperature the same during the day and night.

“They work different than a normal furnace where you would change your temperature back during the evening. With the ground source heat pump, it’s better to leave the house consistent, and it’s way more efficient that way than it is changing the temperatures up and down like you try to do to save money with electric heating.”

– Michelle

To take part in our Heat Pump Program, start by finding an installer who is accredited by the Manitoba Geothermal Energy Alliance. They’ll help you through the application process. Once you receive approval from us, complete the project, and we’ll send you your incentive.