GEO THERMAL GROUND SOURCE HEAT PUMP
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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jan 2005
    Location
    Bakersfield, CA
    Posts
    209
    With the help of several contributors (Docholiday, BaldlLoonie and others) I have pretty much decided on the HVAC configuration for my new home.

    But I must say the most intriguing solution that I have researched is a geo thermal system (probably because it's so unique and seems to deliver consistent savings).

    But I won't use this system, primarily just too expensive and I'm probably not courageous enough.

    What do the professional members think about geo thermal systems? Do you think they will become more popular in the future as energy costs increase? Do any of the profesional members have experience in this area, and can they offer any insights into this technology?

    Thanks

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Aug 2003
    Posts
    1,841
    Do you think they will become more popular in the future as energy costs increase?

    NO!



    Do any of the profesional members have experience in this area, and can they offer any insights into this technology?


    The cost is to much,to much time to install.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Apr 2004
    Posts
    7,680
    There is nothing wrong with them, they are very popular indeed. The problem most people have is the installation costs and hopes that it is installed with the correct amount of ground loop. Rarely do they need aux. heat unless they are in an area where they will run long enough to freeze the earth around the external ground loop. Overall its great technology and most of the companies who call themselves geothermal, do a pretty good job. Few hacks enter this arena as they cant afford the equipment and subcontactors.

    Canada relies heavily on them but whats $30,000 in Canadian.. like $103.44 here. Lol

    So what did you decide on?

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jan 2005
    Location
    Bakersfield, CA
    Posts
    209
    Doc, I am in central California, hot, dry summers and mild winters (rarely freezing). I decided on a relatively low SEER (12 or 13) AC with TXV and a 2 stage 80% furnace, either 2 speed or variable. My time on this site (and your input) convinced me that a 16-19 SEER unit and a 91+ furnace would not necessarliy be worth the extra money, while the 2 stage furnace with a 2 speed or variable speed fan would provide higher level of comfort. I haven't decided if a 2 speed AC is worth it. My thinking right now is probably not. Last thing is to have the ducts sealed (it's not a code requirement in California.

    The most importnant thing I learned is not to be too concerned over brand, but rather find the best quality contractor.

    Thanks again.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Mar 2004
    Location
    Grottoes VA
    Posts
    5,856
    I have installed a lot of Geo-thermal units. The cost is high but savings are great.

    I have a builder who I installed 2 geo systems for. 6800 sq ft house and 200 dollar a month electric bill in winter, in VA.

    He will pay for his system in 10 years, he installed the loops himself so his cost wasn't so high.

    We do have one hack builder who installs geo equipment. His installs are not bad but the service has a lot to be desired. I have stolen all his customers.
    Karst means cave. So, I search for caves.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Nov 2001
    Posts
    1,874
    I would think they will become more popular, They have been on the increase around here. I don't know about southern california.

    The install cost can be more due to the loop and excavation, But that is only a one time expense. The savings that will be delivered are for the life of the unit.
    In most areas the payback can be short term. They don't take that much loger to install, But it needs to be installed by someone who knows what they'er doing. Not just anyone can do.

    They need to be trained on geo.

    If you try to fail, and succeed.
    Which have you done ?



  7. #7
    Join Date
    Aug 2003
    Posts
    1,841
    The most importnant thing I learned is not to be too concerned over brand, but rather find the best quality contractor.


    Thats true the best way to find a good contractor is,see if the installer makes good money if he does then he will do a good job,Plus if he makes good money then you know that his boss likes the work that he does.The installer will put it in not the owner.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jan 2005
    Location
    Bakersfield, CA
    Posts
    209
    The Trane website features a homeowner in Austin, TX. It's interesting that they're being installed in Canada, Texas, Virgina, even California, so it seems as though they make some economic sense in diverse climates. Only one company locally seems to have entered this market, and it appears he has done only a couple of installs in 2 years.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Aug 2003
    Posts
    1,841
    Originally posted by nathan9999
    The Trane website features a homeowner in Austin, TX. It's interesting that they're being installed in Canada, Texas, Virgina, even California, so it seems as though they make some economic sense in diverse climates. Only one company locally seems to have entered this market, and it appears he has done only a couple of installs in 2 years.

    nathan9999 do you know what a GEO THERMAL GROUND SOURCE HEAT PUMP is?

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Mar 2004
    Location
    Grottoes VA
    Posts
    5,856
    I did some refer work in a college cafeteria/conferance hall. There was 107 geo-units installed in that building.

    A lot of schools are installing these units (cost effective).
    Karst means cave. So, I search for caves.

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Apr 2004
    Location
    Niantic, Illinois
    Posts
    545
    Any manufacturers 16 seer two stage heat pump is just as efficient as geothermal. It doesn't heat your water, but install cost is half. I verified this fact, that was brought to my attention by my trane rep, in real time. A floor plan we have done many times with geothermal, slight adjustments for things like shade and reflective load have varied some of these slightly. Came up on one on a very small lot. Put in 16 seer heatpump. Operating cost for first rear nearly identicle to same house in same subdivision with same load. Similar operating parameters.

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Aug 2003
    Posts
    1,841










    ground & water they take time to install.

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Jan 2005
    Location
    Bakersfield, CA
    Posts
    209
    framehvac, only thing I know is what I read on the Trane website and the local contractor's website. Heat pumps are rarely, if ever, used in our area (irascible says it's because of our high electric rates), so prior to visiting this site I knew nothing about heat pumps, and I have never had a local contractor even mention a heat pump as an option. Truth is, I still really don't understand the technology very well.

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