Want to supplement my Geothermal heatpump

k-2
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Post By: k-2 » Fri. Jan. 12, 2018 10:00 pm

Rob R. wrote:
Fri. Jan. 12, 2018 7:39 pm
If the Geo system is only falling a little short, and it is economical to operate, it seems like direct vent NG unit would be the way to go for a boost on the cold days.
And may actually cost less than the GEO to operate ,NG rates are historically low right now (Thank You fracking). As long as your local gas company in not loading up your bill with a lot of nonsense charges. But you seem to be happy with them enough to keep em just for a kitchen stove so.....

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Post By: coalnewbie » Sat. Jan. 13, 2018 5:11 am

and gives a fallback heat as you wait for Steven Hawkings to fly over from England to fix the GEO system. To me that is very important. Rinnai are very reliable but I would still put a power surge system of some sort on the plug. Don't be surprised if you like the Rinnai heat more than the GEO. Your wife will love it.

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Post By: 2biz » Sat. Jan. 13, 2018 8:47 am

Tom, If I could offer my 2 cents...You actually have the best of all worlds! You have NG available and a basement with ductwork already installed. Pick your poison...I like the thoughts of the wall heater, but you said you already have gas logs. Maybe you don't want another gas appliance?

Even though GEO is very efficient, the compressor runs its a$$ off in the winter. For me, (I have 2 heat pumps that I installed back when we had global warming and when they actually worked!!!) Now, I save the compressors for cooling. They last a lot longer! There's hidden expense you sometimes don't think about! Pay now or pay later!

So if you want to look into burning coal, look into something that will heat your entire home during extreme cold like we're having now and lengthen the life of the GEO. Take Coalnewbies advice (And mine), look into the Liesure Line AK-110 with a coaltrol....It will heat your whole house effortlessly with your layout. The coaltrol is awesome in keeping your house within 1°!

Or maybe look into a wood pellet furnace. Same concept, but maybe easier to get pellets?

There are other variables to consider, like how to get coal to the furnace, venting, and how to tie into the ductwork. The AK-110 can be power vented, not a bad thing since its so efficient. (Furnace has a bottom flue exit, very little heat goes out the chimney). Easier on the power vent... The AK-110 can idle down so far you wouldn't have to worry about draft issues. If you go this route or similar, the only thing you'd have to do is put a damper in the duct to separate the GEO from the furnace. Only one can run at a time....And how to feed the beast, even though it sips coal!? It would help if you had a basement ground level entrance w/attached garage for storage, assuming you'll use bagged coal? This is something I feel needs the most consideration...

So, some things for you to consider....Lots of good advice here on the forum to help you in your decision making...One other quick note and selling point of going the coal route. The AK-110 is infinitely variable using the coaltrol. At high feed and the 1800cfm blower maxed, it runs on less than 400 watts according to my kilowatt meter. It doesn't take much of a generator to keep the house warm during extreme cold when you have a power outage. With the Ice Strom that rolled through here last night and with all the power outages, it doesn't take much to be prepared and give you "Peace Of Mind"....It would take a pretty big gen to run your GEO! Its nice to have viable options....
Last edited by 2biz on Sat. Jan. 13, 2018 12:21 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Post By: McGiever » Sat. Jan. 13, 2018 11:22 am

Same here w/ extending the GEO compressor life, my GEO is my winter back-up to a coal boiler w/ air/water coil in duct, boiler runs easy enough off my back-up power source.
Summer time it's run her hard for AC cooling.

For those who care, my GEO is an 'open loop'...'pump and dump' from a water well. HP thinks it 53* outdoors 365 days...and blows 100* air down the duct. in heat mode.
Last edited by McGiever on Sat. Jan. 13, 2018 11:32 am, edited 2 times in total.

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Post By: coalnewbie » Sat. Jan. 13, 2018 11:29 am

I do have a high output Artesian well near the house. I have toyed with these ideas for years but the cost was too high. I even bought a Hydrodrill but ran into a granite ridge. I remembered the family motto that if at first you don't succeed - give up.Yes ground water is in the early fifties. So A/C is the preferred usage. So on an average year I run the air for three months at the very most. My electric bill goes up $200 so say $600 increase for the year (sometimes way less). If I save 75% then I would save $450 at the very most. Add maintenance costs for this fancy unit which is more than my Lennox that has run for 22 years flawlessly. I leave the compressor on 12 months a year. It's a 5 ton unit so say 60,000btu. The Waterfactory unit I looked at was 50,000 btu and I had to dig a pasture down the China to get the coil size. I would have no change on $40,000 which means the pay back was in 100 years. I even went over to Sullivan College where they installed a million dollar unit and after three years it froze. To much time heating and not enough time cooling. Yet one more stupid liberal disaster. Meanwhile my beautiful sunnyside will pay back in 4 years tops and is a lot more fun.

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Post By: 2biz » Sat. Jan. 13, 2018 12:20 pm

McGiever wrote:
Sat. Jan. 13, 2018 11:22 am
Same here w/ extending the GEO compressor life, my GEO is my winter back-up to a coal boiler w/ air/water coil in duct, boiler runs easy enough off my back-up power source.
Sorry, forgot to add this option when giving my 2 cents! If going this route, no need to have a damper to switch from one heat source to the other. Just use the GEO blower to distribute heated air from the in-duct heat exchanger...Definitely deserves an honorable mention! :D

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Post By: k-2 » Sat. Jan. 13, 2018 12:26 pm

coalnewbie wrote:
Sat. Jan. 13, 2018 11:29 am
. I even bought a Hydrodrill but ran into a granite ridge.
THanks CNB ,now i know im not the only one who has a Hyrdo drill. About the subject at hand. Iv found it very useful to find a list of fuels that list their cost per 1 million BTUs. At one time Coal was like $3 and Electric was close to $40 per MBTUs. Not anymore but you get the idea. From that point then decide which one of the lowest cost per MBTu fuels you want to go with and the cost of installation.
Last time if did it coal, wood pellets ,corn, and cord wood were all at the lowest cost with NG slightly higher .

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Post By: tommaher » Sat. Jan. 13, 2018 12:33 pm

2biz wrote:
Sat. Jan. 13, 2018 12:20 pm
Sorry, forgot to add this option when giving my 2 cents! If going this route, no need to have a damper to switch from one heat source to the other. Just use the GEO blower to distribute heated air from the in-duct heat exchanger...Definitely deserves an honorable mention! :D
Thanks everyone. 2biz, that sounds like what I'm looking for. I will start researching where to get an AK110 and install. Basement doesn't have a ground level access, but has one set of steps from the garage down as well as an exterior flight of steps down. Plus, I have a son to carry coal!

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Post By: coalnewbie » Sat. Jan. 13, 2018 12:37 pm

Bretz Building
1486 Old Rt 119 Hwy N
Indiana, PA 15701
Directions
Phone: (724) 463-7910

We are here for you . I had 2 AK110s so if I can be of any help..... great choice. With an SWG it's no problem and with young muscles you are set. Lets all talk about linking as you have a high limit switch in the outlet duct of the AK 110 that must be paid attention to. BTW, photos are a board obligation. It brings entertainment to our pathetic lives.

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Post By: tommaher » Sat. Jan. 13, 2018 12:50 pm

How many tons of coal on average are we talking over a typical winter with the AK-110?

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Post By: lsayre » Sat. Jan. 13, 2018 12:56 pm

tommaher wrote:
Sat. Jan. 13, 2018 12:50 pm
How many tons of coal on average are we talking over a typical winter with the AK-110?
What is your homes heat loss calculation?

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Post By: Rob R. » Sat. Jan. 13, 2018 12:56 pm

tommaher wrote:
Sat. Jan. 13, 2018 12:50 pm
How many tons of coal on average are we talking over a typical winter with the AK-110?
That depends what you want it to do.

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Post By: Qtown1835 » Sat. Jan. 13, 2018 1:01 pm

I don't have an ak110 but it seems like most people will burn between 4-6tons for an average house with coal over the heating months including dhw. Im usually around 4tn to heat 3000sf. With my hydronic keystoker in SE PA.

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Post By: coalnewbie » Sat. Jan. 13, 2018 1:06 pm

Superinsulated, size of house and where you are and the GEO helping out, my guess is 2 -3 tons. Depends on how you run it as was stated above.

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Post By: 2biz » Sun. Jan. 14, 2018 8:09 am

tommaher wrote:
Sat. Jan. 13, 2018 12:33 pm
Thanks everyone. 2biz, that sounds like what I'm looking for. I will start researching where to get an AK110 and install. Basement doesn't have a ground level access, but has one set of steps from the garage down as well as an exterior flight of steps down. Plus, I have a son to carry coal!
I hope you didn't get confused....The AK-110 is a forced air stoker made by Leisure Line. You would need to put a damper in the duct to separate your GEO and the stoker...The stoker has a variable 1800cfm blower....Here is my install thread if you want to see the finished product. There are many more install threads on the site as well.

AK-110, Is It for Me?

LL also sells a dual fuel NG and Rice stoker Boiler, the WL-110....With this furnace, you'd also have NG as an option. By running a boiler, you'd put a heat exchanger coil in the duct work and use the GEO blower to distribute the heat. This furnace even has more options, like putting another heat exchanger in the garage and keeping it heated if you so choose. Or putting the furnace in the garage, which the radiant heat will keep it warm and pipe the heated water in to the ductwork heat exchanger....Another option would be to heat your DHW when its running....The skies the limit!

Thats why I said it deserves an honorable mention! LOL...For me, the forced air furnace fit my situation/layout a little better.

Oh and as for amount of coal it uses....Coalnewbies guess is pretty close. I doubt I'll use 3 ton....And my installation isn't as efficient as yours. I duct my heat in through the cold attic. You wouldn't have that loss.

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