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OT: Can heat-pump be converted to geo-thermal heat pump?
Posted by: Dennis S
Date: May 23, 2006 12:13AM
I have a 3.5 ton Lennox heat pump about 5 years old. I wonder if it can be made to use geo-thermal exchange because my brother-in-law has a back hoe and he could dig up the yard and lay pipe relatively cheaply.

If it can be, I'll do the math and see what the payback is on geo-thermal.
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Re: OT: Can heat-pump be converted to geo-thermal heat pump?
Posted by: Racer X
Date: May 23, 2006 12:15AM
There is a joke here involving "laying pipe" and "back hoe".

I call dibs until I think of something.
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Re: OT: Can heat-pump be converted to geo-thermal heat pump?
Posted by: mikebw
Date: May 23, 2006 01:55AM
Not too sure if that will work, but I say you just start digging for the heck of it anyway, might find some buried treasure, you never know...
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Re: OT: Can heat-pump be converted to geo-thermal heat pump?
Posted by: Tofer
Date: May 23, 2006 04:18AM
I've heard great things about heat pumps -- why do you want to change it?

-Tofer
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Re: OT: Can heat-pump be converted to geo-thermal heat pump?
Posted by: spearmint
Date: May 23, 2006 08:36AM
Won't work, two different pumps.




Da Good Life
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Re: OT: Can heat-pump be converted to geo-thermal heat pump?
Posted by: DaviDC.
Date: May 23, 2006 09:36AM
The last time I had my heat pump worked on I asked the guy about converting to geo-thermal & he looked at me like I'd lost my mind.



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Re: OT: Can heat-pump be converted to geo-thermal heat pump?
Posted by: cbelt3
Date: May 23, 2006 09:44AM
The basic physics may be the same, but the mechanics are different- different working fluids, heat exchange systems, etc. Check with a pro before you take the classic hillbilly mechanic approach.

If you DO take the classic hillbilly mechanic approach, be sure to buy lots of spare duct tape..
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Re: OT: Can heat-pump be converted to geo-thermal heat pump?
Posted by: Baby Tats
Date: May 23, 2006 02:37PM
No, I am pretty sure you need to have it installed from the get go.

I have heard of people with high flow wells, ponds and/or streams using water as an adjunct heat sink to air. I would imagine this would be fairly easy to retrofit. You could just add a secondary heat exchanger between the exhaust fan and the primary heat exchanger to pre-cool or pre-heat the air. Also submerging the primary heat exchanger in a flowing stream would work as well. OR buy some type of specialized counterflow heat exchanger and pump the water through- negating the need for a fan completely.

I have no idea of the environmental impacts of releasing this heat into a stream or pond. I imagine it would be fine to release it into a sewer, but most people with sewers don't have streams, ponds or wells.

Have google searches turned up nothing?

BT
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Re: OT: Can heat-pump be converted to geo-thermal heat pump?
Posted by: Dennis S
Date: May 23, 2006 09:12PM
Quote
Tofer
I've heard great things about heat pumps -- why do you want to change it?

-Tofer

The heat pump now is exchanging air. A geo-thermal heat pump would be working with the temperature of the underground, which would be more efficient.
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