Hot Water Systems
Geothermal systems can provide all or part of a household’s hot water. An economical way to obtain a portion of domestic hot water is through the addition of a desuperheater to the geothermal unit. A desuperheater is a small, auxiliary heat exchanger that uses superheated gases from the heat pump’s compressor to heat water. This hot water then circulates through a pipe to the home’s water heater tank. In summer, when the geothermal system is in the cooling mode, the desuperheater merely uses excess heat that would otherwise be expelled to the loop.
When the geothermal unit is running frequently, homeowners can obtain all of their hot water in this manner virtually for free. A conventional hot water heater meets household hot water needs in winter if the desuperheater isn’t producing enough, and in the spring and fall when the geothermal system may not be operating at all.
Because geothermal systems heat water so efficiently, many manufacturers today are also offering triple function geothermal systems. Triple function systems provide heating, cooling and hot water. They use a separate heat exchanger to meet all of a household’s hot water needs.