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Heat Pumps, Geothermal or Ground-Source

Last Updated: 09/30/19 Click to see brand name products that meet these requirements

A geothermal heat pump uses the thermal energy of the ground or groundwater to provide residential space conditioning and/or domestic water heating.

Product Details
  • Federal agencies are required to purchase products as designated or specified under this program
Procurement Info

Where to Buy

Life Cycle Cost Savings

Life Cycle Costing (LCC) aims to quantify the financial impact of a product over its entire life cycle to assist consumers in making decisions that will save them money over the long term.

For most applications, Energy Star-qualified heat pumps have the lowest life-cycle cost. An efficient product is cost effective when the energy costs saved over the life of the product exceed the additional upfront cost (if any) of the more efficient model. Energy Star considers both upfront costs and lifetime energy cost savings when setting required efficiency levels. Federal purchasers can assume that Energy Star-qualified products are life-cycle cost effective.

Guiding Principles
Contributes to meeting The Guiding Principles for High Performance and Sustainable Buildings
Additional Guidance

Substitutes for ozone-depleting chemicals, as identified under the SNAP program, may be purchased with the product itself or separately.  In either case, federal agencies must procure and substitute safe alternatives for ozone-depleting substances to the maximum extent practicable.

The ENERGY STAR Most Efficient program identifies the most efficient products among those that qualify for the ENERGY STAR in particular product categories. Product categories were selected and recognition criteria were established to ensure that products that receive this recognition demonstrate efficiency performance that is truly exceptional, inspirational, or leading edge. There are Most Efficient criteria for geothermal heat pumps.

Included products: Residential central air conditioners, air-source heat pumps, and geothermal heat pumps, as defined below, are eligible for ENERGY STAR® Most Efficient recognition in 2017. Air-Source Heat Pump (ASHP): An air-source unitary heat pump model is a product other than a packaged terminal heat pump, which consists of one or more factory-made assemblies, which normally include an indoor conditioning coil(s), compressor(s), and outdoor coil(s), including means to provide a heating function. ASHPs shall provide the function of air heating with controlled temperature and may include the functions of air-cooling, air-circulation, air-cleaning, dehumidifying, or humidifying. Central Air Conditioner: A central air conditioner (AC) model consists of one or more factorymade assemblies, which normally include an evaporator or cooling coil(s), compressor(s), and condenser(s). Central ACs provide the function of air-cooling and may include the functions of air-circulation, air-cleaning, dehumidifying, or humidifying. Geothermal Heat Pump (GHP): A geothermal heat pump uses the thermal energy of the ground or groundwater to provide residential space conditioning and/or domestic water heating. A GHP model normally consists of one or more factory-made assemblies that include indoor conditioning and/or domestic water heat exchanger(s), compressors, and a ground-side heat exchanger. A GHP model may provide space heating, space cooling, domestic water heating, or a combination of these functions and may also include the functions of liquid circulation, thermal storage, air circulation, air cleaning, dehumidifying, or humidifying. A GHP system generally consists of one or more GHP models, the ground heat exchanger(s), the air and/or hydronic space conditioning distribution system(s), temperature controls, and thermal storage tanks. Excluded products: The following products are not eligible for ENERGY STAR Most Efficient recognition in 2017:

  • Units that run on three-phase power.
  • Central Air Conditioner or Air-Source Heat Pump models rated for more than 65,000 Btu/h of cooling. This limit does not apply to GHPs.
  • Mini-splits, multi-splits and split ductless systems are eligible for ENERGY STAR Most Efficient in 2017 with different requirements.
Potential LEED Contributions

This product may contribute* toward points in multiple LEED v4 rating systems, including areas required for LEED v4 building certification. Primarily, the credits will apply in the Building Design and Construction (BD+C) and Building Operations and Maintenance (O+M) categories. This includes the specialty areas of: New Construction and Major Renovation, Existing Buildings, Core & Shell, Schools, Retail, Data Centers, Warehouse and Distribution Centers, Hospitality, and Healthcare. Specific credits are:

  • Energy & Atmosphere
    • Optimize Energy Performance
    • Enhanced Refrigerant Management

* It is important to note that no products, individually or collectively, can guarantee a specific number of points for LEED Category credit. Each credit will need to be matched to the product by a certified professional.