I"m debating between a trane geothermal unit and a waterfurnance geothermal unit. Is one better than the other?
I am new to the board here, but I have been researching products and materials for our new custom dream home. I am strongly considering a Waterfurnace geothermal unit. I am talking to an installer who sells both brands, and he recommends the Waterfurnace. According to him, Waterfurnace's main focus is on geothermal units and that is their specialty. Trane's main focus is on conventional systems. That's my two cents worth.
Trane or Waterfurnace?
The answer is neither. They may be fine products, but I believe there are better choices. If youÂre hell bent on liquid ground loops, go with ClimateMaster. However, there is a better alternative. See my postings at ÂSize of Geothermal UnitÂ, two messages above.
I would suggest the WaterFurnace. The installer told you to choose WaterFurnace over Trane based on the idea that Trane focuses on conventional units while WaterFurnace specializes in Geo. This is very true.
fsq4cw told you to choose ClimateMaster but be aware ClimateMaster specializes in commercial geothermal and not residential. They released a fine residential product recently with a 27 EER (Energy Efficiency Rating). WaterFurnace is in the process of releasing a 30 EER unit called the Envision. It also has a 5 COP meaning for every dollar you spend, you'll get five dollars worth of heating and cooling compared to electricity. It's simply the most efficient geothermal unit you can buy. period.
and I would recommend a small nuclear fission reactor. just throw the waste over the fence! Maybe three nuclear reactors would be better than seven wood stoves. Whereas you might run out of trees a nice size lump of uranium lasts forever.
We just got a Waterfurnace Envision Unit and it's great. Be sure to get a good thermostat.
What about cold water fusion?
frankjones5 said - 'be sure to get a good thermostat'.
Well I am in the process of setting up the contract to put in a new 5 ton dual speed Waterfurnace Envision into my home and I'm VERY curious to hear what you meant with that one. What (else!) don't I know .... ?
I would suggest NOT going too crazy over a thermostat. Just a basic one that does whatÂs needed; itÂs not a ÂPlayStationÂ. Just set it & forget it Â including programmed setbacks (not needed)!
To Doug 9898
I read you are installing a 5 ton dual speed Envision. I was wondering, how many sq. ft. is your house, how many linear ft in wells, and where do you live? How did the project go? I am about to go to contract for a 6 ton Envision.
I'M THINKING OF REPLACING MY OLD ELECTRIC SYSTEM WITH A CLOSED LOOP GOE THERMAL SYSTEM. I HAVE A ONE ACRE SIX FOOT DEEP POND BEHIND MY HOUSE AND I'M CONSIDERING USING THAT FOR MY HEAT EXCHANGER LOOP.I LIVE IN SOUTH CAROLINA AND USE MORE AC THAN HEAT. WHAT DO YOU THINK???
I just love these old threads that come up on a web search.
I have a AT45 2-speed compressor Waterfurnace installed in November of 1993.
We just had our first failure this afternoon, it is now about 15 degrees outside in North/Central NJ.
The circulation fan went out. So, we have no heat, can't even use the emergency resistive backup/boost heat elements, they require a fan, even more than the heat pump.
But, on the wood stove idea, I do have a modern wood burning insert in my fireplace and it works so well I decided to put off calling for furnace service from the nearest Waterfurnace dealer, about 20 miles from here, until tomorrow, and I will accept a reasonable schedule to avoid a high cost emergency visit.
So, much as I recommend Waterfurnace, yes this post is a recommendation, 15 years without a service call or any other maintenance isn't bad, and also a recommendation for a "plan B". I've always made sure I have enough firewood on hand to run 24/7 for at least a week in freezing weather.
Today proves the value of said plan.
Craftyone1945 (1945, birth-year?) The pond sounds good, but I have no experience with such an arrangement, my Geo uses a closed loop vertical exchange, in fact I have two 500' deep loops.
Happy New Year.
TO JERRY NJ,
"THANK YOU FOR YOUR INPUT"
THE OLD WATER FURNACE HAS SERVED YOU WELL.
Pond is by far the most efficient of all three systems and the cheapest since no big long ditches to dig or wells to drill. I have three ponds 1/2 acre, 3 acre and 2 acre and the installer said the 1/2 acre was plenty big but you need 6-8 feet of depth. I had 8 in the small one and 12 in the big pond and was knda leaning toward the bigger one but the small one was very close to the house. Anyway it works great and I live in GA. I just got it done last week and have the envsion by water furnace.
Anyone on Long Island, NY have one? I am interested in putting in a geothermal heat pump, but keep having people in the heating business try to talk me out of it.
What about the econar vara 2 plus made in Minn-esota these people know cold. 10 yr warr also.
We just opted to get a geothermal system (Waterfurnance) There is a new tax deduction of a true 30% rebate of the costs of installing the system. I have researched everywhere, visited homes that have them, and have concluded that although the upfront costs will be high even with the 30% rebate we are going with it. In fact, in about 2 weeks they will begin to drill 5 holes at 300 ft of depth!
Honestly, I am afraid of this system and have my fingers crossed. It is more of a fear of the unknown.
Would I be correct in guessing that this will be a 10-ton system?
You are correct, it is a ten ton system.
how did your install go? are you happy with the waterfurnace?
munbun: i'm looking at both the envision and econar. The biggest difference that i can see is, waterfurnace has a flow center that allows you to check the fluid level of the loops. econars that i have looked at you need special tools to check/add fluid.
from reading the internet and talking with folks that have had problems, most of them have had low loop field levels. now before everyone starts in with the closed loop shouldn't leak arguement, there always seems to be some air trapped somewhere. this also gives you the opportunity to see if the field is leaking for some reason. i would rather be able to see a problem before i have no heat.
I should update to what I have posted here 5-years ago. ClimateMaster and WaterFurnace are both fine products. WhatÂs more important is the design of the ground heat exchanger and over all quality of the installation.
Go for the best installation Â not the best (lowest) price!
Shershouse - thanks for the info and encouragement. I hope your system turned out well.
After doing a lot of research, I went ahead and had a closed loop waterfurnace geothermal system installed and am thrilled with the result. My house has never been so comfortable, winter and summer, plus I have saved $4000 in heating bills over last year. Amazing! I've just combined it with a solar voltaic system so it will cost me very little to run from now on. Even more amazing!
What ecomech and fsq4cw posted makes sense. The installer's design is key. Don't go with the lowest price, go with the best and most experienced installer. Experienced with geothermal, and check their references to be sure.
MY ENVISION NDV038 SN FY1933 FREEZES UP. THE TEMP REGULATOR WAS REPLACE BY MY A/C INSTALLED AND COST ME $232 OVER AND ABOVE THE WARRANTY - THAT WAS LAST YEAR . TODAY I AM HAVING ANOTHER FREEZE UP. IS THIS REALLY A GOOD QUALITY PRODUCT?? OR IS THIS JUST A ONE TIME LEMON?
Not enough details. Your problems could be related to improper sizing of your system to the ductwork if this is a retrofit. It could be that your ductwork canÂt handle the CFM. Was a Manual J and Manual D performed?
WRITING IN CAPITALS IS HARD TO READ!
Sorry about all Caps. I am new to all of this inquiry and things. I am not familiar with manual J and D process.
Rood Heating and Cooling did a computer model analysis of my new house, taking into consideration the size of the house,windows, insulation in walls and ceiling, and solar deckings. The computer suggested a 3 ton unit for 2300sqft. Next the duct size and outlets were determined by Rood to handle the air flow. Only the top and bottom 3 inches of the 28 inch coil freezes, however the mid part of the coils are at room temp. This is a repeat problem from last year -- then a temp regulator ??? was replaced and all was well untill this mo. Replaced 3 mo old air filter with no improvement.
Any advise to improve the reliability of my 2 yr old Water Furnace Geothermal unit? Thanks.
arkychuck - some possibilities: If the center is warm and the edges freezing, then you do not have a lack of air flow. Then the center would also be cold. The most common reason for part of the coil to be frozen while part is warm is a problem with refrigerant distribution. that can be from not enough freon in the system, or a defect in the expansion valve or 'distributor' that follows the expansion valve, or could be some moisture in the freon that freezes as it passes the expansion valve and then blocks off some of the freon passage. If the system has expansion valve and distributor, looks like a kind of octupus, all the legs of the octopus should be the same temp. If some are frozen and others not so cold then you have found your problem. next step is to check the operating pressures and superheat of the system.
I installed a 5-ton Waterfurnace for my home with a pond loop. The pond is 6ft deep and 120'x60'. We live in southwest Michigan (zone 6a). Cooling last summer was great, no problems at all. This winter is a disaster. The system goes into "fault" mode almost every day, sometimes more than once per day, and we can't get the temperature above 66 degrees. When the system is into the "fault" mode the compressor is turned off and the auxiliary electric heat runs by default. I shudder to think what my electric bill will be. BE CAREFUL if you are thinking of a geothermal system
Re: Tom Reepmeyer
Unfortunately from what you described, your pond loop was ill conceived and will not work adequately in heating mode. Your pond is just not deep enough. The top of the pond loop should be a MINIMUM of 7 to 8 feet below the bottom of the surface ice level. You will have to explore another type of ground heat exchanger, probably vertically drilled boreholes.
I have heated and cooled about 4300 sq ft with a Waterfurnace geothermal system for 12 years and it has been wonderful, except for desuperheater problems. I am currently building a smaller home (2100 sq ft) and have been getting proposals from various HVAC contractors. Waterfurnace proposals seem significantly more expensive than others. I am quite impressed with Climatemaster. Can anyone give me their observations about Climatemaster or comparisons between the two? Thanks.
Have had a Waterfurnace since building our home in 2006. We have a problem every year related to a part. Once or twice it was the coils, something else was the that the solution that ges by the copper is eating into the copper-a flaw Waterfurnace acknowledges. We seem to have a problem mainly with changing from heat to a/c or a/c to heat. It also doesnt cool as well as regular a/c units if the temps are extrememly high. It's now been 5 years and each 6mo. to 1year we have had to call our WONDERFUL installers who help figure it out and get us repaired with no added costs.
I 'm not sure if I'm really saving $. I have a 4000sq.ft home with no finished basement. My lowest bill this past year was $115, the highest $330. This has been a mild year, and my whole house is with electric appliances. a family of 4.
We installed an Econar and are very happy with it. We went with them as we are in a northern clime and Econar is made in Minnesota, so it's a heating system that also happens to cool. Others are manufactured for more southerly climes and tend to be cooling systems that happen to heat.
We have had it running for over 3 years and have never had to turn on emergency heat. It has maintained our house at 69 degrees without effort despite below 0 temps in the winter.