Monday, July 15, 2013

Energy saving geothermal and solar hot water systems

Just last fall (September 2012) we installed a Water Furnace geothermal heating and cooling system. I was looking at our power bill, and I can report that our electric usage was 1669 in 7/2012 and 2485 in 8/2012, but skipping to this year our usage was 927 in 6/2013 and 865 in 7/2013. (That would be a billing period that ran from 6/3/2013 to 7/1/2013, so it's actually June). Anyway, I'll keep collecting data, but it seems the new system is saving energy.

See that black flexible join in the air duct above the unit? That is for noise control, so vibrations from the fans don't reverberate through the ducting. Now, I'm sure any new furnace/air conditioner was going to be quieter than our old one, but the near silence of this system is amazing to me. It's really hard to tell if it's on, unless you are near a vent and can feel for warm or cold air.

Because the cooling comes from the four 150 foot deep wells, there is no noisy, ugly unit for A/C next to the house anymore! That's a plus.

Here's a shot of our solar hot water system, or at least parts of it.  On the left is the 80 gallon storage tank, so the hot water created in the afternoon is still there for your morning shower.  The computer controller is on the copper pipe, and all the temperature gauges show you what's up at any particular time.  (Don't worry-you don't need to understand the system in order to enjoy it.)  On the right is the natural gas on-demand water heater, that is capable of bumping up the temperature if it needs it.  It generally only turns on between October and April.  Interesting fact: the system will run fluid through the roof units at night in the summertime, to bleed off excess heat.  

No comments:

Post a Comment