Installing and using an air-source heat pump means there will be equipment that will need to be installed outside in the elements. This is just how the system works. Units housed outside mean there is an increased risk of damage to the unit as well as the need for regularly scheduled maintenance to maintain the unit from natural climate conditions and corrosion.
Geothermal units are not subject to this kind of potential damage, as the heat pump is installed within the conditioned space and the ground heat exchanger is located underground. This equipment location gives the advantage of realizing a service life of geothermal units for 24+ years as compared to an air-source heat pump system life of 10 to 12 years. Everyday weather conditions do not typically wreak havoc on geothermal units. This can make a huge difference in how long the equipment continues to operate.
Extreme weather conditions, such as natural disasters, lead to less geothermal system damage overall due to the heat exchanger being underground. A tornado or hurricane can take out a complete air-source heat pump. Certainly, the same could happen to a geothermal unit located in a damaged, conditioned space. However, the underground loop system, aka the heat exchanger, will remain intact and be ready to connect to a replacement unit once a building or commercial property is replaced. Air-source heat pumps have no such advantage due to their consistent exposure to the outside conditions, which leads to a shorter system life.
Geothermal heat pump systems will last longer and are less susceptible to potential dangers than air-source systems, making them the better choice in the long run. Being aware of these additional advantages can work in your favor when advocating for the use of geothermal technology. It works for the customer; and it works for the environment. Therefore, it works for all of us.