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leaks in a geothermal loop (cc)

Posted by couldusehelp (My Page) on
Fri, Jun 10, 05 at 12:21

I have a plastic closed circuit geothermal loop that leaks. I was wondering if it is possible to fix the leak without replacing the whole thing. Hopefully some type of product.

Help if you can,
CUH


Follow-Up Postings:

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RE: leaks in a geothermal loop (cc)

I wish I could help.
How do you know its leaking? How old is the system?
What did the geothermal loop people say?
Mary


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RE: leaks in a geothermal loop (cc)

CUH,
Encountered the same thing, with my now-10-yr-old geo loop; fluid leaking out. It's a wonder, my new HVAC maintenance guys said, that the pump motors hadn't burned out. They hooked up an 'auto-fill' apparatus, tied into the home water supply, that automatically adds more water if & when pressures drop due to leakage.
They cautioned that at some point in time, it may become necessary to replace or install new loops, but that they'd installed a number of these units(probably on loops put in my my installer - who's now out of business), and have not had to do any new loops.


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RE: leaks in a geothermal loop (cc)

Regarding Luck_Ps post,

Id be mindful of problems with freezing. If the loops are horizontal, perhaps theres a fix thats not too expensive if youre lucky.
If you have vertical bore holes, perhaps theres a technique to determine which loop is defective and replace it with another hole. The problem has to be defective fusing of the sections of pipe. That being said, Id be worried about when the next fusing will become defective.

Id get quotes on what it would cost to put in a completely new earth link. Id also inquire about warranties, reading the fine print, and ask how long these people have been in business. Ask for references where systems have been in service for 5 years and over follow up with phone calls and visits! One more thing, Id see if I could get the whole system (or should I say, hole system) covered by a home-owners insurance policy. Speak to an insurance broker who can get you the deal. It might be worth the premium on the premium!

Good Luck Post an up-date!

SR


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RE: leaks in a geothermal loop (cc)

Yes, check your warranty. My ground loops are warranted for as long as I own the home.

BTW, my ground loops - 8 of them - are copper tubing filled with freon. I have a Direct Exchange or DX System - not your ground loop water system. My loops were put in drilled holes going down diagonally from the manifold.

Good luck.

Ken


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RE: leaks in a geothermal loop (cc)

My loops are horizontal.
So far, so good, with the auto-fill 'fix'. I'm one year out from that installation, and the geo unit is working better than it ever did in the preceding 9-10 years.

SR makes a good point - for anyone else considering putting in a geothermal system - to check out any prospective installers. We were new to the area, and all we had to go on at the time was a list of 'authorized' geothermal contractors/installers from our electrical co-op. Just because they were on the 'approved' list, doesn't mean they knew what to do - or would do things correctly, even if they do know.
The guy who installed our system is now out of business, and we've come to find out that he more or less went out of business because he had so many lawsuits pending against him with regard to improper installations and system failures.
My loops have a leak, and in addition, instead of each unit(2.5 T downstairs, 2T upstairs) ecah having their own loop and pump, they're both hooked up to the same loop & pump unit.
Additionally, my upstairs unit blew 4 compressors over an 8 year period, and we finally bit the bullet and just replaced it - and when they pulled the old unit out, they found the installation directions insert booklet sucked up against the grille. I guess it had been there, impeding air flow since day 1, and in all the times the installer and his son(who joined another HVAC operation when his dad went out of business) had been out to work on it, they'd never figured out WHY it kept blowing compressors.


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RE: leaks in a geothermal loop (cc)

Hm...just chiming in here. I didn't have one installer.
One company drilled the vertical wells and installed all the black plastic pipe, manifold etc. and a different HVAC co installed the heat pump unit. My builder set this all up. The worst thing about building with a GC is that there is this layer between you and the sub's - you don't really have a good idea of what's going on.
Been in the house a little over a month and the HVAC just quit putting out cool or warm air. HVAC guy things is the control board and is coming back today.
Hope my wells don't ever leak. Seems like the only way to find out is the hard way?
Mary


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