A Geothermal System for Your Southwest Illinois Home: How Tax Credits Can Help

Posted On: July 07, 2014

If you’re considering replacing or adding a geothermal system to your home, you’re on the right track of energy savings and improved home comfort. The federal government is offering a 30% tax credit (with no upper limit) on qualified geothermal system purchase and installation. Besides the tax credit, a geothermal system saves substantial money on monthly operating costs because it uses the earth as a heat source in the winter and as a heat sink in the summer.

Get a quote for your geothermal installation in Metro East from the experts at Ernst Heating & Cooling. Contact us online or call today!

How Does a Geothermal System Work?

For high-efficiency heating, a geothermal system works by removing heat from the earth with a water/antifreeze mix running through an underground pipe network (“loop”), and transferring it to a heat pump in the house. The heat is extracted, and circulated as warmed air through your duct system, just like any forced-air heating system. In the summer, the process is reversed. Heat energy is absorbed from the home via refrigerant, which carries the heat to the water/antifreeze mix. The solution is re-circulated underground, leaving the heat behind.

Learn more about installing a geothermal heat pump »

A geothermal system has a much more efficient heat-exchange process than a standard air-source heat pump or air conditioner. Those appliances exchange heat energy with the outside air, which has a much wider temperature range than the moderately warm/cool earth several feet below the surface. Put simply, it requires less electricity to dump heat energy into the cool earth than it does to expel it into hot outside air. The same applies to extracting heat energy from very cold air in the winter.

To get the full tax credit, your geothermal system must have been installed after January 2009. This tax credit ends Dec. 31, 2016.

A geothermal heat pump can have a high initial cost, but the savings accrued in terms of energy expenditure and maintenance will pay for the system in a relatively short time. The federal government has made it even cheaper to install a new geothermal heat pump system with this limited-time tax credit. Other incentives are offered by many state governments and electric utilities.

Install a Geothermal System Today

To find out more about whether geothermal is right for you, contact the HVAC experts at Ernst Heating & Cooling, serving various southwest Illinois communities, including Glen Carbon, Highland and Troy, since 1951.

Our goal is to help educate our customers in Hamel, Alton, Glen Carbon, Highland, Greenville, Bethalto, Edwardsville, Collinsville, Maryville, Staunton and Troy, Illinois about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems). For more information about geothermal systems and other HVAC topics, download our free Home Comfort Resource guide.

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