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What are Desuperheaters?

11/8/2013 7:52:11 AM | by Anonymous


A desuperheater is simply a secondary heat exchanger that transers and retains heat from the earth to be used during winter seasons. They also transfer heat during summer seasons into a home domestic water tank. A desuperheater is part of a residential geothermal system. A residential geothermal system transfers and exchanges heat through a process known as a ground loop system. A ground loop system takes advantage of the earth by storing its heat and enabling users to use this stored heat during winter seasons.

These desuperheaters are used in hot water generators as they are able to heat the water in domestic water tanks using a geothermal heat pump. But their main function is to cool the water, thus the name desuperheater. The desuperheater works by circulating the cold water and redirecting it to the bottom of the tank where it will be heated through a water pipe. In order to cool water, the process is reversed sending cool water to the top of the tank. The desuperheater uses heat from the earth when heating. If it is winter it takes the heat that is inside the house. The heated water is then circulated back into the water tank.

By using desuperheaters in residential geothermal systems costs about 75% less in a cooler climate and in warmer climates it can be almost 90% less. This is when residential geothermal systems are compared to traditional heating and cooling systems such as propane flame water heaters or electric oils. With the increasing price of natural gas, one can save about 15% in savings on utility bills.

On top of that, during the summer savings are even more as it is almost free to heat the domestic water tanks. This is due to the fact that during the summer times, there is a lot of heat retained in homes. Thus, the desuperheaters take this heat and transfer it to the hot water tank. This is very efficient as it not only cools houses but also uses the unwanted heat for a useful purpose. The only cost incurred in the summer is the cost of running the water pumps to transfer the water.

There are different types of ground loop systems that desuperheaters use in residential geothermal heating systems. The two types of ground loop systems are open looped and closed looped. For residential geothermal systems that use closed loop systems in their desuperheaters, there are horizontal, ponds, lakes and vertical options that can be used. Commercial buildings that are larger often use vertical closed loop systems in their desuperheaters.


The residential geothermal systems that use open loop systems in their desuperheaters usually get the heat from a source such as a body of water or a well. This water is also used as a heat exchange agent that circulates through the pipes and loops back into the body of water or a well. Sometimes recharged well are used to return the water back. These types of systems are only applicable provided the water source is clean. The water source has to comply with regulations and standards before it can be used.

Unlike other hardware equipment, residential geothermal systems that have desuperheaters cannot be manually installed as they are complicated pieces of machinery. Thus, a professional contractor has to be hired to arrange for the residential geothermal system to be implemented in a home. There are many factors to consider when installing a residential geothermal system such as the size of the house, the available land, soil conditions and the climate. With desuperheaters, the usefulness and effectiveness of residential geothermal systems are increased greatly


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