What Is the Difference Between Hard and Soft Water?

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What Is Soft Water?

When there is a low concentration of ions, particularly magnesium and calcium, in the water, it is known as soft water. Where you live depends on what water ends up classified as soft. In the US, water with 60 mg/l of calcium carbonate is considered soft.

Soft water lacks minerals, making it unsuitable for consuming, however this lack of minerals can be beneficial in other ways. Soft water cleans better without leaving behind the residue found in hard water, and the same goes for your skin. Soft water is better on your skin, leaving it cleaner and softer.

What Is Hard Water?

Hard water is simply water with high mineral content. Hard water forms when water percolates through limestone and chalk deposits. Due to the high mineral content, drinking hard water can have health benefits such as combating, and even preventing, heart disease. Hard water picks up minerals in natural waterways.

Hard water can also have negative effects. For instance, hard water may leave clothes looking dingy, your dishes with spots, and may even dry out your skin. Due to the residue left behind by hard water, it will often decrease the lifespan of your appliances, such as a dishwasher and washing machine. Hard water also uses up more energy, negatively affecting the environment as well as your energy bill.

What Is the Difference?

The main difference is the mineral content. Rainwater is soft water, whereas hard water is water that goes through waterways and picks up minerals. They both have their own sets of pros and cons, for example, hard water is great for drinking and certain disease prevention, but not so great for household cleaning or keeping your skin soft. Soft water may be better for keeping your skin soft and your dishes clean, but when it comes to drinking it, it can lead to several health issues.

Understanding the difference between hard water and soft water can help you make decisions for your own home. To learn more about the two types, and what you can do about the water in your home, contact Chesapeake Geosystems. Call 410-489-1712 or email us today

Understanding Geothermal Cooling

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Central air conditioners can be costly to run and repair. A sudden air conditioner breakdown can be particularly frustrating in the middle of summer. Learn how you can enjoy cool, affordable, and reliable climate control by using geothermal cooling.

What Is Geothermal?

Geothermal heat is the earth’s natural warmth. Below ground, the temperature remains constant regardless of the air temperature. A geothermal cooling unit works by taking advantage of this consistent temperature to cool or heat your home.

Geothermal Cooling Units

A professional geothermal cooling unit can offer you the cool indoor temperatures you need without excessive utility bills. They work by running a mixture of water and antifreeze through pipes buried as deep as 10 feet in the ground. These pipes circulate water from below ground to the surface, thereby creating a consistent water temperature.

In the summer, this temperature is significantly cooler than the air temperature. A refrigerant coil, blower fan, and ventilation system take advantage of the cool temperatures to affordably circulate comfortably cool air throughout your building.

Geothermal Cooling Advantages

While ductless air conditioners are growing in popularity in homes around the area, these systems take the current air temperature and either cool or heat the air. In many cases, this is far less efficient than a geothermal unit.

Geothermal units utilize the constant temperatures beneath the ground, so you’ll enjoy a more energy-efficient system when faced with extreme temperatures in the summer and winter. This environmentally friendly system is an excellent choice if you’re looking for an affordable alternative to cool down.

Receive a Quote Today

Don’t wait to enjoy the advantages of a geothermal cooling unit today. Contact Chesapeake Geosystems today to receive a quote and schedule an installation service. Enjoy prompt and professional service as you install, use, and maintain your new heating and cooling alternative. Save money and enjoy years of cool, comfortable temperatures by calling 410-489-1712 or emailing us today!

The Well Pump: To Repair or Replace?

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Just like any feature of a property, your well pump needs regular maintenance if you want it to run smoothly. Because it’s essential for fresh water, it’s important to place maintenance as a top priority. But what happens when something malfunctions? Your well pump isn’t exempt from emergent situations, so it’s best to be prepared for when such a scenario takes place. Do you know when to repair and when to replace? The professionals can help you make that decision, but the following are some things to keep in mind when faced with this situation.


Repairing the Well Pump

A well pump repair will typically cost less than replacing it altogether, so naturally, you’d hope for a repair. Some things that may necessitate a repair include small problems with the motor or minor damage to the hardware. With parts on hand, a professional can typically have repairs taken care of in just a short amount of time.


Replacing the Well Pump

If your water bill seems to be spiking, the water pressure isn’t constant, or your fresh water is dirty, a replacement may be the best option. Some of these issues can be repaired, but in many cases, a replacement will be more cost-effective. You could also hire someone to replace the well pump if the motor makes it fail altogether or if you’re experiencing other mechanical issues.


How You’ll Know

The easiest way to know whether you should repair or replace your well pump is by asking a professional. What you might think is a small problem could actually be a failing motor. What you might see as minor damage could have a whole domino effect of other problems. When you throw in the towel and decide to replace the well pump, it could just need a tiny repair you’re unaware of.


When you have an experienced, trained professional take a look at your well pump, you’re more likely to end up with the right solution for your situation. Contact Chesapeake Geosystems, Inc. today at 410-489-1712 to learn more or to schedule an inspection.

Why Geothermal Energy Is a Worthy Investment

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During discussions about renewable energy sources for residential buildings, wind mills and solar panels most often come to mind. Geothermal is a less talked-about option, but is, nonetheless, a worthy investment for heating and cooling building structures. Here’s why you should consider a geothermal option.


Cheaper Than Fossil Fuels

Setting up geothermal systems do require a larger initial investment than fossil fuels. Even so, the system pays for itself several times over. You can expect cost savings of up to 80% compared to fossil fuel options.


No to Low Maintenance Required

Geothermal systems don’t require many moving parts. This contributes to the system’s longevity. Heat pumps can last for up to 20 years, and warranties on the main parts typically range from 25 to 50 years. Not only will you rarely need to do heavy maintenance work and repairs, but it likely won’t be out of pocket for some time to come.


Quiet During Operation

Both window units and wind mills can be loud when you are in close proximity to them. For factories, on-site prefab construction sites, and other places where noise levels are high, this may not be a problem. For homes, classrooms, and office spaces, people will appreciate that smooth, quiet operation.


More Design Flexibility

High ceilings are one of the main selling points homeowners and businessowners look forward to when purchasing property. Unfortunately, plumbing and HVAC units can take up half a foot or more of the ceiling height. In small spaces, lower ceilings can make the space feel even more cramped. Geothermal systems take up much less space, allowing architects to add anything from storage to skylights above.


Unlike solar and wind energy, geothermal energy is used specifically for heating and cooling structures. This makes it a great solution for people who want to lower their heating and cooling costs, but don’t wish to completely go off the grid. Contact Chesapeake Geosystems by calling 410-489-1712 or sending an email to for more information today.

What to Consider When Buying a Geothermal Heat Pump

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You’ve likely noticed just how expensive it can be to cool and heat your home, which can chip away at your overall comfort level. Rather than roast or freeze in your own home, it’s better to look into alternate heating and cooling methods. Here are a few things to keep in mind if you’re considering a geothermal heat pump.


Recognize That You Can Save More Money Than You Realize

While the price and installation cost of a geothermal heat pump may give you pause, you have to look at the long-term financial benefits. For instance, some heat pumps can also heat your water at no additional cost. Depending on where you live, there may be local, state, and federal government incentives in place to help drive down the overall cost of your heat pump. This means you can start recouping your investment easier and faster.


Think About Overall Efficiency

Pay close attention to the heating and cooling efficiency of any geothermal heat pump you are considering. Even better, opt for models that meet ENERGY STAR’s most current ratings, guaranteeing efficiency.


Consider the Installation Site

Work with heat pump installation professionals to determine just how compatible your property is with heat pumps. Specifically, check the special, geological, and hydrological characteristics of the ground. With this information, you’ll know the type of ground loop that works best for you.


Choose the Right Heat Pump Installer

Not just anyone can install a geothermal heat pump the right way on your property. Specific techniques and equipment are necessary to do the job right. Be sure to check the professional credentials and professional background of any company you’re thinking of hiring. While you may have great land for a heat pump and choose the right pump model, neither will mean much if your heat pump is improperly installed by a disreputable technician.


Know that Chesapeake Geosystems has you and your home covered if you’re thinking of getting a geothermal heat pump. Call 410-489-1712 or email us today with any questions.

Geothermal Energy systems

How Do Solar and Geothermal Energy Systems Differ?

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As a property manager, it’s your job to make sure costs are kept at a minimum. Have you thought about installing a geothermal or solar energy system? Are you confused about the difference between the two? Don’t be! Solar energy and geothermal energy systems are completely different and actually work well when implemented together. The following breaks it down.

From the Sun or the Earth

Most people know that solar energy comes from the sun. Each day when the sun is shining, solar panels soak up the energy that is used to power a building. The power can be used for anything that a building would typically need electrical power to run.

In contrast, geothermal energy comes from the earth. If you were to go outside and dig a hole about six feet deep, you’d find soil that sits at 50 degrees year-round. A geothermal system uses that steady temperature to send heat into the building during winter months. In the same way, hot air is sent back down to the earth to keep the building cool during summer.

How the Two Work Together

As you can see, geothermal and solar energy systems do not exactly perform the same function. They do both provide a less expensive form of energy but in two different ways. That’s why they’re great when implemented together.

Geothermal energy does require a small amount of electricity. With a solar energy system installed, that power doesn’t have to come from the electric company. Instead, it can come right from the solar panels on your building. Together, the carbon footprint that your building would normally make could become eliminated altogether.

Getting Started With Your System

Saving the environment takes the dedication of everyone on the planet. Do your part by implementing alternative energy systems that work. To learn more about geothermal energy and how a system can work together with a solar energy system, contact Chesapeake Geosystems today by calling 410-489-1712 or sending an email and speak with a professional.

advantages of geothermal energy

Advantages of Geothermal Energy Vs. Traditional HVAC

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Many property owners have recently taken interest in the trend of geothermal heating systems. It’s a technology that works similarly to traditional home heat pumps but depends on temperature differences deep underground rather than in the outside air. By drawing stored solar energy from the earth, geothermal systems are able to provide indoor comfort with noticeable savings and better efficiency.

Basic Benefits

When evaluating whether geothermal heating is for you, it’s smart to start with the basics. Consider these perks offered by this HVAC (heating, ventilation and air conditioning) alternative:

• Elemental protection: Geothermal units are situated within the property, avoiding the need for outdoor air conditioning compressors that are generally exposed to harsh elements.

• Constant performance: This technology remains active at all times; common HVAC systems usually cycle on and off in an attempt to regulate indoor temperatures.

• Greater consistency: Typical HVAC systems can deliver temperature fluctuations, or allow the formation of unwanted hot or cold spots.

Efficiency Examined

There are notable advantages offered by geothermal energy in terms of performance. For starters, they’re expected to function for up to 25 years—considerably longer than the approximate 10-year lifespan of common HVAC systems. Maintenance is often as minor as a simple filter change every 12 months.

These systems rely exclusively on a renewable energy source and thus are often subject to tax credits that can save you money on installation. Monthly operating costs are generally much lower than older-fashioned technologies and tend to remain more consistent over the long haul. It all makes sense, then, that the Environmental Protection Agency has designated geothermal heating as an ideal green-friendly HVAC alternative.

Make the Change

When you’re ready to make the switch to a cleaner, more affordable method of heating your property, Chesapeake Geosystems is ready to deliver results. Their experience and reputation are well established, with over 30 years serving the greater Maryland and Washington, D.C. areas. Reach out today by calling 410-489-1712 or sending an email to and get started on a more comfortable, energy-efficient home for your family.

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4 Steps to an Efficient and Long-Lasting Commercial Geothermal System

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So, you’ve made the right choice by installing a commercial geothermal heat pump and have already witnessed the stunning savings in energy. Is there anything you can do to keep it running at maximum efficiency while prolonging its life? You bet! Just like all HVAC equipment, some routine, minor maintenance will both retain the natural efficiency as well as prevent damage and repair costs. Here are 4 things that should be done periodically for ideal operation.

Flush the System

Prior to running, a chemical flush of the pipes is essential. Over time, debris accumulates in established systems and eventually causes internal damage. Open-loop systems require periodic flushing, although all types of systems will benefit from doing it occasionally.

Purge Air From the Pipes

Air intrusion into your system is a serious matter. It’s designed to run at a precisely calculated pressure which trapped air will alter, reducing efficiency, causing corrosion and, if left unfixed, system failure. Purging the air during annual maintenance will prevent it from gathering in significant amounts.

Test the Flow Rate

Commercial geothermal systems often have multiple zones and sections, each with its own flow rate. A qualified technician can run tests to ensure that all of them are set correctly with the most advantageous flow.

Verify Optimal Pressurization

Ideal system pressure is key to keeping your geothermal heat pump running at peak efficiency. The pressure changes as the piping expands and contracts with temperature variation, so a qualified technician should be consulted for rigorous pressure testing and maintenance.

Due to the advanced technology of commercial geothermal systems, you should have it serviced by experienced technicians. In fact, annual maintenance has been shown to pay for itself in energy savings and repair costs.

Chesapeake Geosystems has IGSHPA-certified technicians who can keep your system running smoothly and protect it from damaging conditions, regardless of who installed it. As the region’s largest geothermal specialists, we’re licensed in 15 states and have been installing, inspecting and maintaining systems for over 30 years with unmatched experience and customer satisfaction. Please call us today at 410-489-1712 or send an email to Chesapeake Geosystems; we’ll be happy to answer any questions you have.

well water pumps

How to Tell If You Need a New Water Well Pump

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If you use a private well on your commercial property for water, then you will need to have some knowledge on how a well pump works. Essentially, the well system is what pushes the water found below the ground up into your property. Depending on what type of pump you have, they are often located below the water level. Shallow wells sometimes use jet pumps which are located above ground. No matter what type of pump you have, here are signs to watch for that are a good indicator that you need to replace it.

You Notice the Water Is Dirty

If you notice that your water is dirty, this can indicate a serious issue with your well water pump. Your best line of action if this happens is to not use any of the water and immediately call a professional.

The Faucet Blows Out Air

Your well system is supposed to run water smoothly and easily unless you turned off your pump yourself. If you notice that your faucet is sputtering out air when the water is running, it could indicate that there is trapped air in your system. This can cause serious clogs or water pressure build-up and should be taken care of immediately.

No Water or Poor Water Pressure

If you attempt to turn your water on and there is little to no water coming out, there are various problems you need to be concerned about. Your pump could be broken or there can be a clogged or broken pipe.

Your Pump Constantly Runs

A pump that isn’t running is certainly an issue, but one that doesn’t stop running is a cause for concern. Often, pumps that are worn-out will keep running to try and maintain adequate water pressure. This can also cause a spike in your electricity bills.

If you have an issue with your water pump, don’t try and fix it yourself. Call Chesapeake Geosystems today at 410-489-1712!

Geothermal heating and cooling efficient

Why is Geothermal Heating and Cooling Efficient?

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Geothermal systems heat structures by transferring heat from the ground into underground pipes and out of a heat pump. These systems provide air conditioning by pumping out heat and emitting cooled air. Geothermal heating and cooling can be more ecologically-friendly and cost-effective than conventional heating and cooling equipment.

What is the Ecological Footprint of a Geothermal System?

A geothermal cooling and heating system requires less electricity than a standard heat pump or furnace. These systems do not emit greenhouse gases such as carbon monoxide or carbon dioxide. A geothermal installation relies on underground pipes, known as a ground loop, and a heat pump unit. A heat pump unit extracts heat from the liquid to emit as warm air. On the cooling cycle, the heat pump draws hot air out of a structure, leaving behind cool air to emit as air conditioning.

What Are the Costs of a Geothermal System?

A geothermal system usually has significant up-front costs. Once the system is installed, property owners may see significant cost reductions on energy bills. Rather than replacing a standard gas or electric heating system approximately every seven years, a geothermal unit functions for up to 15 years. A geothermal system does not require an outdoor unit, is easy to maintain, and runs very quietly. The fire risk posed by conventional furnaces is all but eliminated in geothermal systems, which do not contain combustible elements.

What Services Do Expert Installers Offer?

Chesapeake Geosystems has more than 30 years of experience installing geothermal heating and cooling systems in Baltimore, Maryland, and the surrounding region. We maintain a fleet of late-model drill rigs and excavation equipment to keep costs low. Licensed drillers and equipment installers will complete the installation process. Fill out the contact form to learn more about how a geothermal system meets your needs and obtain a free onsite estimate or call us at 410-489-1712!