dslreports logo
site
 
    All Forums Hot Topics Gallery
spc

spacer




how-to block ads


Search Topic:
uniqs
11317
share rss forum feed

Aranarth

join:2011-11-04
Stanwood, MI
Reviews:
·Frontier Communi..
reply to Jack_in_VA

Re: Do Air Conditioners and Heat Pumps cool equally well?

said by Jack_in_VA:

Let me see if I understand this:

The outside discharge loop runs a to a drainage tile system that is also used by our septic system.

The water table around here is about 10 -20 feet down and we have many swamps, ponds, streams, and rivers. (this is west MI after all).

You have your open loop heat pump discharge piped into your septic drain field which is only about 10 - 20 feet above the water table?

You do realize all that water causes the sewage to peculate (wash) into the groundwater contaminating it. Around here it would be illegal to pipe anything like this into the drain field.

We ARE NOT using a sand point well! (Though the old house we used to live in did.)

The well is on the other side of the house and the slope of the land is towards the swamp (away from the well) which is about 1/4 of a mile away. The swamp is to the North and East it covers about 50 acres though only about 15 of it is actually on our land.

There is no more risk of contamination than the local farmers spraying horse and cow manure on top of their land, and some of their fields butt right up against it. Or risk of contamination that anyone else using a septic system with a water well would have.

Yes this was all inspected and signed off on. We just put the house in 4 years ago.

NOTE: The entire system is NOT above ground, NOTHING is exposed to the air. There is no drainage pool.

And finally, the ground around here is all sand/loam mix. Any water pumped into the ground using a sock and tube or drainage tile sinks into the ground really fast even with a high water table.

garys_2k
Premium
join:2004-05-07
Farmington, MI

It is interesting that your county permitted the septic field to also be used to absorb the heat pump discharge. Was it engineered originally to do so?



Jack_in_VA
Premium
join:2007-11-26
North, VA
kudos:1
Reviews:
·Millenicom
reply to Aranarth

Spreading treated manure on the surface is an environmentally permitted operation but using that much water into a septic drain field flushing the contaminates into the water table is quite something else.

Yes this was all inspected and signed off on

Did the inspector realize that your ground source heat pump discharge was piped into the septic system?

And finally, the ground around here is all sand/loam mix. Any water pumped into the ground using a sock and tube or drainage tile sinks into the ground really fast even with a high water table.

And along with it your human waste right into the water table. I'm glad I don't live around you. In fact last year the county caught one of my neighbors discharging his washing machine water into a ditch and it was seeping into the next door neighbors well. The suds gave it away.

garys_2k
Premium
join:2004-05-07
Farmington, MI
reply to laserfan

It would be interesting to test that ground water for e-coli contamination. Wanna' bet it would be positive?



boogi man

join:2001-11-13
Jacksonville, FL
kudos:1
reply to Jack_in_VA

okay. air still isn't as efficient as water. i'm glad they are getting better as time goes by but the fact remains a pound of water can move more energy than a pound of air can.
--
my site


laserfan

join:2005-01-14
Texas

Makes me want to try an experiment, while OATs here are in the 100s, to set-up some water spray(s) on one of our condensing units, to see if I get much colder air out of my registers! Seems like when the weather's really hot I get temps that are about 5 deg warmer than usual.


garys_2k
Premium
join:2004-05-07
Farmington, MI

Just be careful that the water you spray doesn't have a lot of minerals in it. You don't want to "insulate" the fins with a layer of lime.



BillRoland
Premium
join:2001-01-21
Ocala, FL
kudos:3
reply to Aranarth

Pumping discharge from a geothermal system into a septic drain field seems like a really bad idea. When that drain field fails, I don't even want to think about what's going to happen next.



cdru
Go Colts
Premium,MVM
join:2003-05-14
Fort Wayne, IN
kudos:7
reply to garys_2k

said by garys_2k:

Just be careful that the water you spray doesn't have a lot of minerals in it. You don't want to "insulate" the fins with a layer of lime.

That, plus it can actually result in reduced efficiency. See the later part of this thread for details.

If misting was such a great idea, and it worked to lower energy bills by the touted 30% misting kit manufacturers claim, then every manufacturer would have them built in to their units. But none do. It's just like all the magic fuel economy boosters you can find for cars...if they work, they would have been included already.

iknow
Premium
join:2012-03-25

said by cdru:

said by garys_2k:

Just be careful that the water you spray doesn't have a lot of minerals in it. You don't want to "insulate" the fins with a layer of lime.

That, plus it can actually result in reduced efficiency. See the later part of this thread for details.

If misting was such a great idea, and it worked to lower energy bills by the touted 30% misting kit manufacturers claim, then every manufacturer would have them built in to their units. But none do. It's just like all the magic fuel economy boosters you can find for cars...if they work, they would have been included already.

all the window ACs have a misting system, from the condensate. built in. lowering the condensor temperature, and hence the pressure, is what makes geothermal systems so efficient!. as an experiment, block off part of your condensor, and see how well it works!. it'll be a pure temperature change experiment. you'll see that reduced condensor temperatures ALWAYS result in lower evaporator temperatures and greater efficiency!. else a geothermal system would be useless, and a thing of the past, just a failed experiment!.


Jack_in_VA
Premium
join:2007-11-26
North, VA
kudos:1
Reviews:
·Millenicom
reply to cdru

said by cdru:

said by garys_2k:

Just be careful that the water you spray doesn't have a lot of minerals in it. You don't want to "insulate" the fins with a layer of lime.

That, plus it can actually result in reduced efficiency. See the later part of this thread for details.

If misting was such a great idea, and it worked to lower energy bills by the touted 30% misting kit manufacturers claim, then every manufacturer would have them built in to their units. But none do. It's just like all the magic fuel economy boosters you can find for cars...if they work, they would have been included already.

It works. I've seen commercial units with the misting nozzles built on the roof mounted condensers as original equipment.

laserfan

join:2005-01-14
Texas
reply to garys_2k

said by garys_2k:

Just be careful that the water you spray doesn't have a lot of minerals in it. You don't want to "insulate" the fins with a layer of lime.

Sure, but this would only happen over a long period of time and besides, I would only be using rainwater on it.

The referenced thread indicates it will work, though too there remain the cautions about minerals and I suppose corrosion.

As to "if it were a good idea mfrs would be doing it" I don't agree. At least, I don't agree that they're not doing it because it doesn't work--instead they're not doing it for the reason that "water destroys everything eventually" i.e. to build an outdoor condensing unit, with, say, a built-in mister, with built-in recovery-and-recirculation trays and water pump(s), would add immeasurably to the mfr cost and especially on-going maintenance. Homeowners would not be savvy enough to maintain these systems. And yes, before we collected rainwater, our well produced water with 120gpg of minerals. That's not a typo. Ten times worse than the worst water you've ever seen. Messes all plumbing in a few short months unless you treat the heck out of it and then it's still horrible stuff.

I'll accept that this has been tried before, that it works, but that it's impractical as a long-term enhancement, if only cuz here rainwater is so precious we'd not want to be spraying it for x hours/day just to make the A/C work a bit better.

P.S. I've seen a lot of commercial cooling tower installations and if you've ever seen any of THESE you know just what kind of mess water cooling can produce. Ugh, these look hard to maintain.


cdru
Go Colts
Premium,MVM
join:2003-05-14
Fort Wayne, IN
kudos:7
reply to Jack_in_VA

said by Jack_in_VA:

It works. I've seen commercial units with the misting nozzles built on the roof mounted condensers as original equipment.

I guess I shouldn't have implied that it doesn't work, rather it's not a good idea, especially for your average residential unit. It wasn't designed for it.


Jack_in_VA
Premium
join:2007-11-26
North, VA
kudos:1
Reviews:
·Millenicom

said by cdru:

said by Jack_in_VA:

It works. I've seen commercial units with the misting nozzles built on the roof mounted condensers as original equipment.

I guess I shouldn't have implied that it doesn't work, rather it's not a good idea, especially for your average residential unit. It wasn't designed for it.

I agree. Window units utilize it but a properly sized central condenser unit is not designed for it nor need it.

Aranarth

join:2011-11-04
Stanwood, MI
Reviews:
·Frontier Communi..
reply to Jack_in_VA

The septic system has its own drainage tile system which terminates in gravel field which is covered with landscaping fabric and buried under the sand that was scrapped off to put in the gravel and the top soil put back on. The geothermal discharge does not connect directly to the sock and tube discharge from the septic system but is laid so it can use the same gravel bed for drainage.

The flow from both is away from the house which is between the well and system. The gravel bed is about 30ft wide and about 50ft long if I remember correctly. I saw it surveyed and put in and the inspector signed off on it before it was all covered over (it was really quick so no pictures). And YES he did know that we would be using an open loop geothermal and we would have three bathrooms eventually etc. which is why the gravel bed is so large.

Specifically we can have horses and cattle after the gravel bed but no housing in that direction.

After 3 months the county inspector came back and tested the water and said it was very clean and was very happy with it. He did say we might want to consider a water softener since the water was slightly hard.

So yes, feel free to come over and have a drink.



Jack_in_VA
Premium
join:2007-11-26
North, VA
kudos:1
Reviews:
·Millenicom

1 edit

Using Well Water
for an Open Loop


Open loops were common 25 years ago, but since then, the closed earth loop has taken over the lead. This is partly due to the major improvements in closed loop technology, and partly because of environmental concerns in some areas. The EPA has been considering outlawing “pump and dump” open loop geothermal heat pumps, but using open loops that return the water back into the earth via an injection well will most likely continue to be acceptable practice.

They are already outlawed and not allowed to get a permit for repairs under grandfather clauses here.



cdru
Go Colts
Premium,MVM
join:2003-05-14
Fort Wayne, IN
kudos:7

said by Jack_in_VA:

The EPA has been considering outlawing “pump and dump” open loop geothermal heat pumps, but using open loops that return the water back into the earth via an injection well will most likely continue to be acceptable practice.

I'd have to ask around, but I believe even injection wells are frowned upon.


boogi man

join:2001-11-13
Jacksonville, FL
kudos:1

yes they are due to when something goes wrong it can ruin an entire aquafer
--
my site



Nick_L
Premium
join:2003-01-22
Pittsburgh, PA
reply to Ken

said by Ken:

If I pump roughly a million gallons a year from the aquifer to heat and cool my house while the farmer next door is pumping a million gallons a week from the same aquifer to water his field I don't see how I am misusing anything.

Allow me to assist you in seeing: Both you and the farmer have an end goal. The farmer wants to nurture his crops so he can sell them at market, provide for his family and help sustain the food supply for our country. You want to be comfortable.

The farmer has one option for watering his crops: Water. You, on the other hand, have several options. I know everyone is not effected to the same degree, but the United States is experiencing the worst drought in 60+ years. Over two-thirds of the country is at some level of drought emergency. Less water coming down means an aquifer that will be slower to replenish.

Didn't you mention pond? Why is a closed loop at the bottom of the pond not an option?


Ken
Premium,MVM
join:2003-06-16
Markle, IN

said by Nick_L:

Didn't you mention pond? Why is a closed loop at the bottom of the pond not an option?

It is an option. It's more expensive to install, more expensive to operate, and doesn't help keep the pond full. Open loop is cheaper to install, cheaper to operate, and keeps the pond full.

Aranarth

join:2011-11-04
Stanwood, MI
Reviews:
·Frontier Communi..
reply to cdru

said by cdru:

said by Jack_in_VA:

The EPA has been considering outlawing “pump and dump” open loop geothermal heat pumps, but using open loops that return the water back into the earth via an injection well will most likely continue to be acceptable practice.

I'd have to ask around, but I believe even injection wells are frowned upon.

There was an article in the farm bureau newspaper talking about that. The issue is that when you inject directly into the water table if it is not filtered by the land you can contaminate the ground water directly. This is also a big issues with irrigation wells that are not properly capped. Improperly capped wells was the main focus of the article.


tstolze
Premium
join:2003-08-08
O Fallon, MO
kudos:1
Reviews:
·Charter
reply to Ken

said by Ken See Profile
It is an option. It's more expensive to install, more expensive to operate, and doesn't help keep the pond full. Open loop is cheaper to install, cheaper to operate, and keeps the pond full.

Although more efficient due to steady water temperatures, the cost of running a well pump and pump maintenance/replacement often put the operation cost higher than a closed loop system.
--
Ofallon, Mo Weather
St. Peters, Mo Weather


cdru
Go Colts
Premium,MVM
join:2003-05-14
Fort Wayne, IN
kudos:7

said by tstolze:

Although more efficient due to steady water temperatures, the cost of running a well pump and pump maintenance/replacement often put the operation cost higher than a closed loop system.

And now the discussion has gone full circle.


boogi man

join:2001-11-13
Jacksonville, FL
kudos:1
reply to Ken

how far away from the pond are you? i'm really curious about the particulars of your install that would make a CL system in a pond more expensive than a well. generally the pond, lake stream option is one of the cheapest as it requires very little trenching/digging comparatively.
--
my site



boogi man

join:2001-11-13
Jacksonville, FL
kudos:1
reply to tstolze

the thing with a CL system in a body of water is that it's temp may not swing all that far depending on depth clarity of water and other local factors.
--
my site


laserfan

join:2005-01-14
Texas
reply to cdru

said by cdru:

And now the discussion has gone full circle.

Not to mention of course, completely off-topic!


Ken
Premium,MVM
join:2003-06-16
Markle, IN
reply to boogi man

said by boogi man:

how far away from the pond are you? i'm really curious about the particulars of your install that would make a CL system in a pond more expensive than a well. generally the pond, lake stream option is one of the cheapest as it requires very little trenching/digging comparatively.

I'm going to repeat myself one last time. From every single bit of research I have pulled up from dozens upon dozens of different sources every single one of them has all agreed that open loop is cheaper than closed loop every single time. At no point in the last several months of researching this have I ever heard a single time that any possible way is closed loop cheaper than open loop. My particular situation my pond is right next to my house, and I have 5 acres of land. I could easily put in a standard horizontal loop in the ground, I could put in a pond loop, or I could do open loop. I am going with open loop because according to everything I have ever seen it is always cheaper to operate than the other methods. If some how closed loop is cheaper then I want to see some evidence of this, but so far nobody has shown me anything accept the link cdru See Profile posted that said closed loop is better, but that doesn't mean much as they make more money off a closed loop install and they didn't factor in the cost of the pumps on the closed loop making it an unfair comparison anyway. When it comes to unbiased sources not out to make money I can't find one that doesn't say open source is cheaper. If you want to prove me wrong feel free to do so with some link to something unbiased showing closed loop is cheaper to operate.


leibold
Premium,MVM
join:2002-07-09
Sunnyvale, CA
kudos:10
Reviews:
·SONIC.NET

said by New York City Geothermal Heat Pump Manual :

As closed loop piping and the required grouting material add
another layer of heat transfer resistance, the closed loop system is
designed for lower winter entering water temperatures and higher
summer entering temperature. These wider temperature ranges
reduce the effective capacity and efficiency of the heat pump
system. Closed loop piping costs are typically in the same range
as the cost of the heat pumps and thus add to the overall cost of
the installation. Generally, these closed loop systems are more
first cost than the above systems. A compensating increase in the
overall system efficiency can be anticipated by the reduction in
loop pumping costs
. However, the requirement for slightly larger
equipment remains a disadvantage.

You won't find anything that will say that closed-loop is unconditionally better then open-loop because in most situations where both open-loop and closed-loop are feasible the open-loop system tends to have a lower initial cost. The cost difference may not be large (or even in favor of the closed-loop system) when new wells need to be drilled but the difference is significant when an existing well can be utilized for the open-loop.
It is easy to determine operational costs for the small circulation pump in a closed-loop system (the effort to circulate the water in a closed loop is the same no matter how deep the loops are buried). The same does not apply for open-loop systems where it makes a big differences on the lifting power of the well pump depending on the depth of the water table.
This means a true comparison of the operational costs of open-loop and closed-loop systems requires a site-specific analysis.

Even with operational costs likely to be lower in a closed-loop system the question remains whether the difference is large enough to make up for the higher up front installation costs ?
--
Got some spare cpu cycles ? Join Team Helix or Team Starfire!

iknow
Premium
join:2012-03-25
reply to Aranarth

said by Aranarth:

said by cdru:

said by Jack_in_VA:

The EPA has been considering outlawing “pump and dump” open loop geothermal heat pumps, but using open loops that return the water back into the earth via an injection well will most likely continue to be acceptable practice.

I'd have to ask around, but I believe even injection wells are frowned upon.

There was an article in the farm bureau newspaper talking about that. The issue is that when you inject directly into the water table if it is not filtered by the land you can contaminate the ground water directly. This is also a big issues with irrigation wells that are not properly capped. Improperly capped wells was the main focus of the article.

a geothermal system won't contaminate the water. you are pumping back the same water you took out of it, only a little warmer.

iknow
Premium
join:2012-03-25
reply to laserfan

said by laserfan:

said by cdru:

And now the discussion has gone full circle.

Not to mention of course, completely off-topic!

how's that? a geothermal system cools better than an air source AC, so the subject turned to that, and then details about the various geothermal systems had to be discussed to be complete!. there's no sense in using something that may not be beneficial for various reasons.