When it comes to your family you want dependable air conditioning and heating systems that provide value as well as comfort. Wright Mechanical Services in Louisville, KY has 25 years of experience keeping families homes comfortable and energy efficient. As a family owned and operated business we understand the need to have the lowest prices in town and the best service. We are committed to both.
We service and repair all brands including York, Arcoaire, Carrier, Trane, American Standard, Lennox, Armstrong, Rheem, Ruud, Tempstar, Amana and Goodman. We have no service fees and 24 hour emergency service. Call Wright Mechanical Services today for a no obligation quote to service, repair, or replace your heating and air conditioning system.
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There are four basic types of ground loop systems. Three of these horizontal, vertical, and pond/lake are closed loop systems. The fourth type of system is the open loop option. Which one of these is best depends on the climate, soil conditions, available land, and local installation costs at the site. All of these approaches can be used for residential and commercial building applications.
Most closed loop geothermal heat pumps circulate an antifreeze solution through a closed loop usually made of plastic tubing that is buried in the ground or submerged in water. A heat exchanger transfers heat between the refrigerant in the heat pump and the antifreeze solution in the closed loop. The loop can be in a horizontal, vertical, or pond/lake configuration. One variant of this approach, called direct exchange, does not use a heat exchanger and instead pumps the refrigerant through copper tubing that is buried in the ground in a horizontal or vertical configuration.
Direct exchange systems require a larger compressor and work best in moist soils (sometimes requiring additional irrigation to keep the soil moist), but you should avoid installing in soils corrosive to the copper tubing. Because these systems circulate refrigerant through the ground, local environmental regulations may prohibit their use in some locations.
Hybrid systems using several different geothermal resources, or a combination of a geothermal resource with outdoor air (i.e., a cooling tower), are another technology option. Hybrid approaches are particularly effective where cooling needs are significantly larger than heating needs. Where local geology permits, the “standing column well” is another option. In this variation of an openloop system, one or more deep vertical wells is drilled. Water is drawn from the bottom of a standing column and returned to the top. During periods of peak heating and cooling, the system can bleed a portion of the return water rather than reinjecting it all, causing water inflow to the column from the surrounding aquifer. The bleed cycle cools the column during heat rejection, heats it during heat extraction, and reduces the required bore depth.
The heating efficiency of groundsource and watersource heat pumps is indicated by their coefficient of performance (COP), which is the ratio of heat provided in Btu per Btu of energy input. Their cooling efficiency is indicated by the Energy Efficiency Ratio (EER), which is the ratio of the heat removed (in Btu per hour) to the electricity required (in watts) to run the unit. Look for the ENERGY STAR® label, which indicates that the unit meets ENERGY STAR criteria. Manufacturers of highefficiency geothermal heat pumps (GHPs) voluntarily use the EPA ENERGY STAR label on qualifying equipment and related product literature. Many GHPs carry the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) and Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)ENERGY STAR label.
Although the purchase and installation cost of a residential GHP system is often higher than that of other heating and cooling systems, properly sized and installed GHPs deliver more energy per unit consumed than conventional systems. For further savings, GHPs equipped with a device called a “desuperheater” can heat household water. In the summer cooling period, the heat that is taken from the house is used to heat the water for free. In the winter, water heating costs are reduced by about half. Depending on factors such as climate, soil conditions, the system features you choose, you may recoup your initial investment in two to ten years through lower utility bills.
And when included in a mortgage your investment in a GHP will produce a positive cash flow from the beginning. For example, if the extra $3,500 cost of the GHP will add $30 per month to each mortgage payment, the energy cost savings will easily exceed that added mortgage amount over the course of each year. On a retrofit, the GHP’s high efficiency typically means much lower utility bills, allowing the investment to be recouped in two to ten years. It may also be possible to include the purchase of a GHP system in an “energyefficient mortgage” that would cover this and other energysaving improvements to the home. Banks and mortgage companies can provide more information on these loans.
There may be special provisions or incentives available from federal, state, and local governments; power providers; and banks or mortgage companies that offer mortgage loans for energysaving home improvements. Be sure the system you’re interested in qualifies for available incentives before you make your final purchase.
Ground or surface water availability also plays a part in deciding what type of ground loop to use. Depending on factors such as depth, volume, and water quality, bodies of surface water can be used as a source of water for an openloop system, or as a repository for coils of piping in a closedloop system. Ground water can also be used as a source for openloop systems, provided the water quality is suitable and all ground water discharge regulations are met. Before you purchase an openloop system, be sure your system supplier/installer has fully investigated your site’s hydrology, so you can avoid potential problems such as aquifer depletion and groundwater contamination. Antifreeze fluids circulated through closedloop systems generally pose little to no environmental hazard.
Geothermal heat pumps (GHPs), sometimes referred to as GeoExchange, earthcoupled, ground-source, or watersource heat pumps, have been in use since the late 1940s. They use the constant temperature of the earth as the exchange medium instead of the outside air temperature. This allows the system to reach fairly high efficiencies (300% to 600%) on the coldest winter nights, compared to 175% to 250% for airsource heat pumps on cool days.
Although many parts of the country experience seasonal temperature extremes from scorching heat in the summer to subzero cold in the winter—a few feet below the earth’s surface the ground remains at a relatively constant temperature. Depending on latitude, ground temperatures range from 45°F (7°C) to 75°F (21°C). Like a cave, this ground temperature is warmer than the air above it during the winter and cooler than the air in the summer.
The GHP takes advantage of this by exchanging heat with the earth through a ground heat exchanger. As with any heat pump, geothermal and watersource heat pumps are able to heat, cool, and, if so equipped, supply the house with hot water. Some models of geothermal systems are available with two speed compressors and variable fans for more comfort and energy savings. Relative to air-source heat pumps, they are quieter, last longer, need little maintenance, and do not depend on the temperature of the outside air. A dualsource heat pump combines an airsource heat pump with a geothermal heat pump. These appliances combine the best of both systems.
Dualsource heat pumps have higher efficiency ratings than airsource units, but are not as efficient as geothermal units. The main advantage of dualsource systems is that they cost much less to install than a single geothermal unit, and work almost as well. Even though the installation price of a geothermal system can be several times that of an airsource system of the same heating and cooling capacity, the additional costs are returned to you in energy savings in 5 to 10 years. System life is estimated at 25 years for the inside components and 50+ years for the ground loop. There are approximately 50,000 geothermal heat pumps installed in the United States each year.
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