One of the benefits of a geothermal heating and cooling system is that they last a long time. The ground loop has a lifespan of 25-50 years, and the heat pump has a lifespan of 20-25 years. With this much durability, it is very possible to have air conditioning (and heating) in Portland, OR for a full generation. But, if you’ve moved into a home with an older system, the possibility exists that you may have to replace some part of your geothermal system, and the part most likely to need replacing first is the heat pump. Heat pumps are complex devices, and anyone conducting repairs on a ground-source heat pump really needs to understand how the system works. This is why it’s important to call knowledgeable professionals, like the ones at Clean Air Act, for all your repair and replacement needs.
Replacing a Ground-Source Heat Pump
Geothermal heat pumps, also called ground-source heat pumps, have a replacement process similar to an air-source heat pump, but the connections differ due to the ground-source system. Here is a general overview of the ground-source heat pump replacement process:
- The technician will disconnect all power to the heat pump
- The technician will locate all pipes coming into the heat pump from the outside and turn off all valves
- The technician will disconnect the pipes from the outside that connect to the heat pump
- The technician will remove the heat pump and any separate parts, such as separate heat exchangers
- The new heat pump will be put in place
- The connections to the new heat pump will be checked and additional piping added if needed
- The technician will connect the new heat pump to the outside connections
- Once connected, the technician will bleed out any extra air by opening the valves
- The technician will also add any water/anti-freeze to the system if needed
- Mechanical tests will be run to ensure the heat pump has been installed correctly
- Power is restored to the heat pump
- The technician will run electrical tests of the new heat pump
- The system will be started and tested
Ground Loop Replacement
It is rare for a homeowner to have to replace a full ground loop, but in case it does happen, the process is fairly quick. Since the original loop is already in place, there is no extra work determining where the loop should go; the technicians will excavate where the current loop resides. The most costly aspect of replacing a ground loop is the digging.
Geothermal replacement needs are pretty rare, but if you do need it, call the Portland, OR air conditioning experts you can count on: Clean Air Act.