Sunday, June 01, 2008

Geothermal Heat in CT - I want it now

The price offered to lock in heating oil in CT seems to be somewhere around 4.40 a gallon. My last fillup was pushing 1000 dollars (which lasts me one month in the winter). I locked in 2 years ago and the price dropped enough that it was cheaper to use diesel from the gas station (vehicle tax included)! A lock in may save the most money this year and I'm sure I could achieve fractionally lower costs using a co-op or shopping around each month. Really, I can't be bothered. I do know I can't be spending 1500+ for oil. This is a killer in New England where so many homes are heated by oil. If it were just me, I would turn down to just above freezing and sleep under 10 blankets. That is not an option with a wife and 5 young kids. Also, the African clawed frog would be pissed being frozen in a block of ice 4 months a year.

I could do a number of things like investing in better insulation/windows (which I want to do also), but I want a quantum change. A wood stove or a multifuel burner would save me money, but I need to simplify, not introduce more complexity.

I want a geothermal heat pump unit in my house. It leverages the constant underground temperature to both heat and cool. The traditional units needed you to dig up your whole yard to put in the pipes or to dig some very deep wells. I read somewhere that there is a 3000 sq/ft house in a neighboring town that has a combined heat/cooling bill of less than 1000 dollars a year using a traditional deep well geothermal heat pump. I think it cost around 12,000 dollars to install with the clean energy rebates.

A company called GeoEnergy Enterprises has an interesting looking system the call the GeoColumn that uses a water filled shallow well dug with a telephone pole auger to do the same. This allows lower cost and installation in high density residential areas. Apparently you sink one of these under a driveway or even under the foundation. I'm not sure of availability, though they have done some demonstation projects in my general area.


Lindsey said...

How much would you end up paying a year? Availability would be an issue as well. It's a really horrible situation right now. I don't know how we're going to fix this. There is one way. Bioheat, it's oil blended with biodiesel. This B5 blend can help conserve 400 Million gallons of regular oil, imagine that. That would be great. Plus, while working for NORA, I hvae come to realize how "green" we need to be. B5 oil is biodegradable, produces NO greenhouse gases and reduces emissions. Here, check it out for yourself: http://oilheatamerica . com/

Jonathan said...

I think from November to March I use about 1000 gallons. Add another 500 gallons for the rest of the year. That's 6600 bucks. So a geothermal system costing 15,000 bucks would pay for itself in a little over 2 years at the current rate, not counting tax incentives and rebates.

Anonymous said...

We're in a similar situation. We moved to CT 2 years ago from the Midwest where we had a GSHP. We loved it and the $ it cost to heat and cool our home was nominal. We have a 4,000 sqft house here and we run through our 300 gallon tank nearly every month in the winter. At $1,500 a month, this year, we've been trying to find a company to install a vertical closed loop system for us, but NO ONE in our area has experience nor is willing to give us a written bid. If anyone can point me in the direction of a company which will install, I'm sure our ROI will pay off in just a few seasons. Thanks!

Anonymous said...

a geo thermal systems
is a great thing but if heating systems is not at replacement
time its more cost effective
to conserve thur air sealing and increased insulation
thus home is then ready for at the approted time for system relacement

Anonymous said...

Did I read Bioheat is green
B5 means 5% biodeisal
only new burners are rated to burn bio deisal ( mostly gasket upgrades ) and produces 10K less btu's per gallon then #2 oil . as far as NO green house gases I dont feel the need to refute that one because its painfully false.

New geothermal credits cover 30% of the total install and even with out the NEED to replace all mechanicals it is cost effective ( but factoring the cost of a new system does help the ROI ) Check out the Geoexchange General Forum
Greenbuildingtalk for much more info

Anonymous said...

You can go to , they install geothermal units at prices well below the average dealer . There located in bloomfield ct. I have seen there systems an they seem to work better than heating with oil .

Mikes said...

In more recent years Geothermal Heating has been done through the use of a Geothermal heat pump. This heating and air conditioning system uses the earth's ability to store heat in the ground and in water thermal masses.

Ac contractors

Mikes said...

A Geothermal Heat Pump uses land mass as a heat exchanger and operates on the ground. It will stay at the temperature of 50 °F (10 °C) all year round, with a water-source heat pump using the available heat in winter and putting it back into the ground in the summer.

Ac contractors

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Rex J. French said...

Keeping some of the upstairs vents partially closed (less than 50 percent of them) will prevent adverse pressure changes in the ductwork and ease stress on your HVAC system, all while keeping other areas warm and comfortable.