|shocking it doesn't work anymore - circa 1970's maybe?|
After much investigation, we decided to invest in geo-thermal heating/cooling. I will admit, we are not the "greenest" family, but for us geo-thermal just makes sense. We'll get a substantial tax break, refund from our electric company, and we'll reduce our utility costs by more than double. The investment on the front end is definitely substantial, but we estimated that we'll make up our costs in the first three years.
Rob and I bought our house about ten years ago - it was originally built in 1955. Thankfully, most of the major work had been done to it (and well) before we'd purchased it. But, time goes by. We had always joked that we thought in one year we'd probably have to replace a furnace, air conditioner, water heater, and roof. Well, this year it's been everything but the roof - but let's throw in a refrigerator and updated electrical for good measure.
I'm just waiting for money to start growing on trees.
|no luck yet|
I thought it might be interesting to chronicle our journey. So, if you're interested - I'll take you along for the ride!
The basic concept in a geo-thermal system is to utilize the constant temperature of the Earth (which is normally about 59 degrees Fahrenheit).
Here is the spiel from our little brochure:
Nearly half the solar energy our planet receives is absorbed by the ground. As a result, below the surface the earth remains a constant moderate temperature year round. This provides an ideal source for heating and cooling your home. Geothermal systems use a sealed underground loop piping filled with circulating water and an ultra high-efficiency Tranquility heat pump to exchange heat between your home and the earth.
In the winter, the earth is your source of heat. Water circulating in the loop piping absorbs heat from the earth and carries it to the heat pump, where it is concentrated and sent as warm, comfortable air throughout your home.
In the summer, the earth is your source of cooling. The heat pump absorbs heat from the air in your home and transfers it to water circulating in the loop piping where it is absorbed by the earth. This provides cool, dehumidified and comfortable air throughout your home.
So, that's the concept - I'll update you as things happen.
The first step was to mark where the 450 foot deep wells will be drilled.
|this is in our back yard - where we'll have our well drilled|
The next step was to call our gas company to mark the natural gas lines - we certainly don't want an explosion.
Because our wiring was last updated in the 1960's, we'll need to have our wiring updated in order to fully support the heat pump.
For those of you that may be interested, we'll be using Mid-Atlantic Geothermal for all installation. I would recommend them and I'll introduce you in the next installment.