Sustainable Living: 3M FuturewiseTown PlanIntroductionGo BackGo Next3M

How the school
is heated

ack to framework of the building

Do ground source heat pumps provide heat energy for nothing?

Not really. Energy cannot be created or destroyed.

Ground source heat pumps require electricity to pump the liquid round pipes. In theory, the system should provide much more energy than it uses at the pump.

The electricity used to power the pump usually comes from a mains supply but other sources of electricity could be used. However, ground source heat pumps use a large amount of power to start up so the source of electricity needs to be reliable.

Ground source heat pumps are expensive to buy and set up but they shouldn't need much maintenance and can provide cheap heat when working.

Remember the heat in the ground comes from the sun.

A slightly cheaper option can be an air source heat pump, which extracts heat from the outdoor air in a similar way to a ground source heat pump. These are nearly as efficient, but won't be able to provide any heat on the coldest days of the year.

Some heat pumps can also work in reverse to cool buildings in summer as well as heat them in winter.