Comparing Geothermal and Air-Source Heat Pumps

Comparing geothermal and air-source heat pumps is a worthwhile exercise because each has distinct advantages over the other. Both types of heat pumps move heat from one place to another as their means of conditioning, but use different sources for the energy.

Energy Efficiency

A geothermal system offers higher efficiency because it uses the stable temperatures underground to either extract or replace heat instead of the atmosphere. This makes geothermal heat pumps the most energy efficient HVAC systems currently available and homeowners who install qualifying geothermal systems can receive a 30 percent tax credit until the end of 2016.

Installation and Costs

An air-source heat pump is by far the easier of the two types to install. A geothermal system requires an underground loop field that involves burying the loops in a horizontal or vertical loop field, the depth of which depends on your yard’s geology, hydrology and size. The loop field adds considerable cost to the geothermal system, although the cost of the equipment for either air-source or geothermal is roughly the same.


Geothermal systems last far longer than air-source heat pumps, largely because they’re not exposed to the elements. The underground loop field can last 50 years and longer, while the indoor air handler can reach 25 years. An air-source heat pump, on the other hand, has a system life between 15 and 20 years. Both types will last longer with annual maintenance from an HVAC pro and routine air filter changes.

Utility Savings


When comparing geothermal and air-source heat pumps in terms of performance, the geothermal system comes out on top simply because underground temperatures don’t vary as much. An air-source heat pump will be able to provide all the cooling your home needs, but in the winter as temperatures fall into the 30s, may have trouble harvesting the heat your home needs. A geothermal system runs more quietly than an air-source heat pump, since it doesn’t require an outdoor condenser, which also saves space in the yard.

If you’re in the process of comparing geothermal and air-source heat pumps in southeast Louisiana, contact Surgi's today at 469-4232.
By Johnny Tubbs, Energy Saving Tips By Johnny Tubbs,
Reprinted from The Courier of Montgomery County

Need a new system?  Surgi's can help.  Need a healthier, more comfortable life?  We can change the way you feel about your home. 

Questions?  Call 469-4232.

While you are researching try the following articles on Surgi's website:

Read Unbiased Consumer Reviews Online at