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Carolina Climate Control Blog

Here’s How Long You Can Expect A Geothermal HVAC System To Last In Charleston

When you need to replace your HVAC system, you have multiple options from the traditional HVAC &  heat pump systems to ductless mini-split systems to what’s becoming more popular in recent years, geothermal HVAC.

Geothermal HVAC is one of the newest forms of HVAC systems. It utilizes the Earth’s consistent, natural energy and thus is one of the more sustainable and eco-friendly systems on the market.

But how long does a geothermal HVAC system last? And for that matter, how much does it cost? Is it worth the cost?


What Is Geothermal HVAC?

Geothermal HVAC consists of both a heating and cooling system. Engineers capitalize on the steady temperature of the ground to make geothermal heat pumps work efficiently.

Geothermal systems have a heat pump that uses pipes filled with anti-freeze and water. These pipes lie underground at a stable, consistent temperature. A small pump circulates the water.

In short, if you’re familiar with a traditional HVAC, these pipes replace the external fan and condenser coils.

The heat pump extracts heat from the ground during the winter, and it pumps that heat into your home. In the summer, the pump works the opposite way by removing heat from the circulating air and thus pumping cold air into the home.

Here are the basic parts of a geothermal HVAC system.


Ground Coils

A geothermal HVAC system has ground coils made from high-density polyethylene pipe, polyethylene, or PVC. These materials all can last up to 50 years. Typically you see PVC pipes used in domestic drains and plumbing.


Heat Pump

The geothermal heat pump differs from a typical HVAC system. t does not require an external fan and external heat exchanger. Thus, you can have your geothermal HVAC contractors install the entire pump indoors.

You can expect the heat pump to last up to 25 years.

The longevity of both the pipes at 50 years and the heat pump at 25 years explains why geothermal HVAC costs are worth the money.



When you look for geothermal HVAC near me, you also want to find a technician who can service your geothermal HVAC system regularly. To make your geothermal HVAC system lasts as long as possible, have a qualified HVAC contractor check it annually. Here’s what they should look for.


  • Adequate refrigeration levels
  • Levels of antifreeze mixture in underground pipes
  • No contamination or bacterial growth in underground pipes
  • No water leaks


Your service man will also want to flush the pipes out every few years.

In short, when you service your HVAC system properly, you can hope for the outdoor parts to last up to 50 years and the indoor parts to last up to 25 years.

A typical air-source pump only lasts 12 years on average. So you can expect your geothermal system to last twice as long if not four times as long.

You will pay more for geothermal installation than an air-source HVAC system, but you will save money in the long run.


Peak Energy Efficiency

Geothermal HVAC contractors understand the massive energy benefits of using a geothermal heat pump and HVAC system. You re-use most of the energy you use to cool or heat our home.

Your energy comes directly from the temperature of the soil, the temperature of which stays consistent. For every unit that a geothermal heat pump requires to run, the heat pump delivers five times as much energy from its ground source. Thus, the system is 400 percent efficient compared to other systems that require more electricity and deliver less energy.

As a result, the geothermal HVAC units not only use less energy, but they cost less to produce the same results. Your monthly energy bills will go down. Experts estimate you will spend 25 to 50 percent less to run a geothermal system.


Fewer Emissions, Safer Systems

Your geothermal HVAC system will last you between 25 and 50 years, and you can rest easy knowing that you’re contributing positively to the environment. Your system will produce fewer carbon emissions thanks to the technology in your geothermal HVAC system.

Over its 25 to 50 year lifespan, the system will emit 25 to 65 percent less carbon than an air-fed HVAC system. Picture removing cars from the environment or, better yet, planting a thousand trees. That’s the effect of using a geothermal system compared to traditional systems.

Furthermore, geothermal systems do not produce carbon monoxide. Thus, you can remove the worry of carbon monoxide poisoning in your home when you use a geothermal system.

If you’re lucky, a traditional HVAC system or a mini-split ductless system will last you twenty years. You can expect more from the components in a geothermal system. Plus, during that 25 to 50 years, you will have lower energy bills and enjoy the thought that you’re contributing to the health of the earth.


Save In the Long Run

A geothermal HVAC can cost nearly twice as much to purchase and install as a traditional unit. However, once you factor in the 30 percent tax credit for an energy efficient system along with the fact that your monthly bills can be as much as 50 percent less with a geothermal system, you will save money.

When you live in a place with extreme heat or extreme cold, you will see the energy savings more quickly. There’s a perk of living in the Lowcountry with the thick humidity and heat in the summer. You will see those monthly energy bills reduced by as much as half.

Does a geothermal HVAC system sound enticing to you? Has your current HVAC system begun to take a nose dive, or is it just costing you way more than what you can afford on a monthly basis? Then look into geothermal heating and cooling.

If you’re looking for an expert in HVAC repair and replacement, contact us today. We have skilled technicians ready to assist you with your heating and cooling needs.

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