Homes in Lynton get ground source heat pumps.
North Devon Homes (NDH) has installed a ground source heat pump to serve a row of 8 homes with heat. NDH are committed to reducing energy bills for off-grid (gas) properties.
You only have to go about 4 foot down and you will find that the temperature of the earth is fairly constant, at around 12 degrees centigrade, it doesn’t matter what the temperature is above ground, it can be 32 degrees centigrade or minus 6 degrees centigrade, at 4 feet the earth remains constant at around 12 degrees.
That means that a ground source heat pump will heat the water in your radiators to 12 degrees without the need to provide additional energy, but with some clever technology and the addition of chemicals this temperature can be increased so that your home can be kept at a very comfortable living temperature without the need of heating it further.
Leaving aside all that technical stuff, the earth stays a constant temperature because it is one big thermal mass that is constantly being warmed by the sun and the internal core of the earth and it is so large that any change of temperature on the surface would take 100’s of years to affect that temperature. All in all, it is going to be at that temperature for a good few generations to come.
I have read about underground gardening, whereby if you dig a hole deep enough and cover the lid with a see through cover (glass, or polythene like you get for poly-tunnels) you can grow vegetables all year round because of this thermal mass keeping the soil at the right temperature. Not sure I have the means to dig down to the required depth, so I won’t be doing that any time soon.
OK, here comes my little bit about infrared heating – infrared heating, if used correctly can make your home a mini-thermal store. It heats up the infrastructure of your home that retains that heat for quite some while (not 100’s of years mind, just a few hours) and this heat is gently released back into your home or building after the heating is turned off, giving you some real value for money on the energy that you have used.
That reminds me, I must write to NDH and remind them we exist.