Results 1 to 12 of 12
  1. #1
    Join Date
    Nov 2008
    Posts
    23

    high seer heat pump vs geothermal in ohio

    hey guys im new to the site and am looking for some advice. I have a 3300sq ft walk out ranch, with 3300sqft in the basement. It is a gold medallion home built in 1969 located in northeast ohio. it is built very very well. the builder went overkill on everything. it is extremely efficient. I have radiant CEILING heat no duct work and no ac and no heat in the basement. (other than a couple wall blowers) we are in the process of finishing the basement. and want to heat and cool the entire house. we had a price of k for a 5 ton water furnace envision unit, vertical loop, geothermal system. this includes the duct work for the house. and it will be eliminating the radiant ceiling heat. we also had a price on a york affinity high seer heat pump, and a carrier unit as well. this price was in the k ballpark including ductwork.


    my question is.....
    is it worth the additional Removed to install the geothermal.
    is there going to be that big of a difference in the electric bills to justify geothermal.
    I am ok with a 7 year or so payback. but 10yr might be pushing it. I am pretty young and dont know where the wind might blow me 10 years from now, but I do know I will be here atleast 10years, and quite possibly forever.

    i appreciate any and all opinions.

    thanks
    Last edited by beenthere; 10-10-2009 at 05:25 AM. Reason: Pricing

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jun 2003
    Location
    Madison, WI/Cape Coral, FL
    Posts
    6,062
    Finishing basements and adding a/c means closed windows during summer weather and the need for humidity control in the basement space. Also with more time with windows closed while a/c is operating, means less fresh air in the home. My research shows well buildt homes get very little fresh air during warm weather because of the loss of the stack effect. Monitoring with a CO2 meter will comfirm the lack of fresh air to purge indoor pollutants and renew oxygen. A whole house ventilating dehumidifier is an excellent device to provide fresh air and maintain <50%RH throughout the home during cool wet weather. Check out Ultra-Aire from thermastor.com. I found that circulating air through a large basements will provide a considerable amount of the cooling during hot weather. This suggest a VS blower. So a smaller a/c than you think.

    Regarding return on investment, consider depreciation, interest, and maintaince with both systems. $15,000 additional investment amounts to: 10% interest-$1,500/yr, 10% depreciation, and additional maintaince. Total heating/cooling cost for the year is ????? my 2,300 ranch house in WI $1,500 with a high eff LP heat and 13 SEER A/C. As you see, a poor investment for me. Check my posts on "Maintaining low %RH during wet cool weather". Regards TB
    Bear Rules: Keep our home <50% RH summer, controls mites/mold and very comfortable.
    Provide 60-100 cfm of fresh air when occupied to purge indoor pollutants and keep window dry during cold weather. T-stat setup/setback +8 hrs. saves energy
    Use +Merv 10 air filter. -Don't forget the "Golden Rule"

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Nov 2008
    Posts
    23

    thanks for the reply teddy B

    will the whole house dehumidifier, pull a lot of energy like a standard dehumidifier will. I would be real happy with a 1500 dollar a year heating and cooling bill. that is a good investment.....right? do you have a fairly cold climate in wisconsin. how does the heat pump do for you. I got some prices on the york affinity system, installed with ducts is k..... I also got some prices on the hallowell acadia installed with ducts is k the water furnace 6 ton geo unit is k.... with ducts. so I really dont know what to go with......now that the acadia is in the mix now
    Last edited by beenthere; 10-10-2009 at 05:26 AM. Reason: Removed prices

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jun 2004
    Location
    Howell, Michigan
    Posts
    16,158
    Moved to residential

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Location
    ky
    Posts
    181
    IMHO

    In Your case, in order to get the 10 yr payback in the 10-15 k difference, The difference between the Heating and cooling bill between the two systems has tobe around 1k- 1.5k a year.

    I would install the high seer heatpump and duct.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Posts
    24
    my advice is to get another estimate for a geothermal install.

    geo is imo the way to go, and if u can get a 5ton envision series unit for the price u stated it'd be retarded not to do it.

    but like i stated in my first line, get another estimate, have the new estimator do a load calc for new geo system, have them consider piping to existing radiant lines with the desuperheater off envision, or to your water heater for hot water assist, just don't remove the ceiling radiant just yet, a lot of options with a geothermal system.

    the price and sizing of the geothermal estimate u have already recieved tells me that most likely the company is inexperienced with geo-thermal heat pumps, and u don't want to get stuck with a shotty at best install, no matter what the equipment

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Nov 2008
    Posts
    23

    thanks for the replies,

    sorry about the price thing. I didnt know, I just wanted to show comparatives. I have 5 geo quotes. this is about the average of all of them. with the exception of one guy that was almost triple. in fact the leading geo company in the area that does about 100 a year was k less for a 6 ton. but he wanted double to do the duct work. they all use manual J version 8. but have a hard time getting a concrete number due to the fact I have no ac and am not heating the basement currently my money manager broke down costs and payback and all the economics, inflation etc.of it and based off the heating companies numbers the payback is 15-20 years. once again using the different companies numbers, I am saving 100-130 dollars a month in energy costs going with the geo over the high seer hp. taking into the consideration the k price difference, that would take 7 years before i would see a return on going with the geo over the high seer HP... I dont know I am not an expert, I am getting a big printout , cost analysis, from the company that quoted me on the york who also does about 20 geos a year. i have 2 of the estimates pushing the geo, and 2 that are pushing the heat pumps. which is making me cross eyed
    Last edited by beenthere; 10-10-2009 at 05:29 AM. Reason: Removed prices

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jun 2003
    Location
    Madison, WI/Cape Coral, FL
    Posts
    6,062
    Quote Originally Posted by spareho View Post
    will the whole house dehumidifier, pull a lot of energy like a standard dehumidifier will. I would be real happy with a 1500 dollar a year heating and cooling bill. that is a good investment.....right? do you have a fairly cold climate in wisconsin. how does the heat pump do for you. I got some prices on the york affinity system, installed with ducts is 18k..... I also got some prices on the hallowell acadia installed with ducts is 22k the water furnace 6 ton geo unit is 29k.... with ducts. so I really dont know what to go with......now that the acadia is in the mix now
    High eff. dehus use $20 per month to provide fresh air and maintain <50
    % RH throughout the home for the summer months.
    My point about $1500/yr interest + $1,500/yr depreciation means you would have to save $3,000 per year to break even. The $1,500 per year is my total heating cost for a climate similar to yours with investment of the less expensive system. In other words, there no way you can save enough money to justify the expensive system. Regards TB
    Bear Rules: Keep our home <50% RH summer, controls mites/mold and very comfortable.
    Provide 60-100 cfm of fresh air when occupied to purge indoor pollutants and keep window dry during cold weather. T-stat setup/setback +8 hrs. saves energy
    Use +Merv 10 air filter. -Don't forget the "Golden Rule"

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Nov 2008
    Posts
    23

    teddy b

    what system are you running, does that 2300sqft include the basement. if what size is the basement, and are you conditioning it.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
    Location
    SE PA
    Posts
    183
    Quote Originally Posted by spareho View Post
    sorry about the price thing. I didnt know, I just wanted to show comparatives. I have 5 geo quotes. this is about the average of all of them. with the exception of one guy that was almost triple. in fact the leading geo company in the area that does about 100 a year was k less for a 6 ton. but he wanted double to do the duct work. they all use manual J version 8. but have a hard time getting a concrete number due to the fact I have no ac and am not heating the basement currently my money manager broke down costs and payback and all the economics, inflation etc.of it and based off the heating companies numbers the payback is 15-20 years. once again using the different companies numbers, I am saving 100-130 dollars a month in energy costs going with the geo over the high seer hp. taking into the consideration the k price difference, that would take 7 years before i would see a return on going with the geo over the high seer HP... I dont know I am not an expert, I am getting a big printout , cost analysis, from the company that quoted me on the york who also does about 20 geos a year. i have 2 of the estimates pushing the geo, and 2 that are pushing the heat pumps. which is making me cross eyed

    If you're saving $115/month, that's AFTER tax income. As you know, every extra dollar you make in salary you keep roughly $.60 (depending on your fed, state, and local tax rate). But every dollar you don't spend, you keep the whole $1.

    So, saving $115/month, is like making an extra $192. Over 12 months thats $2300 (12*192).

    Also, lets assume a 10 year payback to be conservative. That's a 10% AFTER tax return on investment that is all but certain. Not sure about you, but I have a hard time finding CERTAIN 10% returns on my money.

    Otherwise, there's lots of other reasons to go geo imo. Finally, make sure your net cost assumptions account for any Fed/State incentives for "Green" technology...which should apply to the geo, but not sure if it applies to the conventional system.
    Last edited by beenthere; 10-10-2009 at 05:30 AM. Reason: Removed prices

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Nov 2008
    Posts
    23

    im4snow

    thanks for getting back to me, the whole problem with our investments, is our return is significantly better than 10%. so the extra money towards geo might not seem much but with our return, plus interest over the course of 7-10 years is is more than triple what the difference is. I am pretty young and want to make sure my life is secure monetarily that is why its better for me to keep the money in the market. BUT.....there is a fine line where if i see geo is going to save me a couple hundred dollars a month over the heat pump then I can see it being worth while.

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
    Location
    SE PA
    Posts
    183
    Quote Originally Posted by spareho View Post
    thanks for getting back to me, the whole problem with our investments, is our return is significantly better than 10%. so the extra money towards geo might not seem much but with our return, plus interest over the course of 7-10 years is is more than triple what the difference is. I am pretty young and want to make sure my life is secure monetarily that is why its better for me to keep the money in the market. BUT.....there is a fine line where if i see geo is going to save me a couple hundred dollars a month over the heat pump then I can see it being worth while.
    Very recently we've seen fossil fuel prices pull back hard. Depending on how your electric provider produces electricity (coal, nat gas, nuke, etc)...you may see lower eletric rates, or at least stable elec rates. So, in this environment, geo is a bit harder to swallow (ROI isn't what it was using 6 month old fossil fuel prices).

    However, I've had geo for the past 9years and am glad I have it. Aside from the economics, it's quite (no outdoor unit) and generally requires little maintenance etc...

    Finally, my crystal ball suggests fossil fuel and/or elec rates WILL be higher, perhaps substantially so, over time. If nothing else, cap n trade (overt gov policy) will add to the costs of electricity for most of us.

    In my opinion, its rare to find a geo customer who would not do it again in hindsight.

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •  
Comfortech Show Promo Image

Related Forums

Plumbing Talks | Contractor Magazine
Forums | Electrical Construction & Maintenance (EC&M) Magazine
Comfortech365 Virtual Event