The research collection aims at finding the various possible opportunities for the effective integration of shallow geothermal energy (SGE) to decrease the energy demand in the built environment and to reduce emission associated with it. The integration of SGE with heat pump using pipe network is extensively reviewed. The open-loop and closed-loop (vertical, horizontal, energy piles) pipe networks are the most common type of ground heat exchanging methods. The objective of the review is to improve the heat exchanger effectiveness through various design aspects according to the local climatic conditions. This comprehensive review part I contains the research details pertaining to the last two decades about ground heat exchangers (geometrical aspects, borehole material, grout material, thermal response test, analytical and numerical models). Also, the factors influencing the ground heat exchanger’s performance such as heat transfer fluid (HTF), groundwater flow, and soil properties are discussed in detail. This paper highlights the recent research findings and potential research points in the ground heat exchanger.