Geothermal system inspections should be done under the following scenarios.
Prior to the final payout to your geothermal contractor to assure that your new system is properly commissioned and functioning as advertised. Trade analyses show that over 70% of hvac systems did not have any performance measurements taken.
If your existing system is up and running but doesn’t seem to be delivering the performance that is expected.
If your existing system has broken down and needs repair.
FOR HEAT PUMP DISTRIBUTORS
If you have a warranty claim where there are questions as to the claim being a contractor or manufacturers issue, then the Geo Guy can inspect the system for an independent qualified analysis.
FOR COMMERCIAL SYSTEMS
Even the best engineers miss things. Often there are synergies in renewable energy systems that are overlooked. Keeping system costs under control is usually not the engineers concern but can make or break the viability of a design. Remember that in the world of geo, if the costs are too high, the client can always choose to burn dead dinosaur fuels for a much lower capital cost.
Areas covered in a geothermal system inspection:
- flow rates, both source and load
- electrical consumption of the entire system, not just the heat pump
- energy output
- pipe sizes and pump selections
- antifreeze percentage of the source side and water quality on the load side
- functionality of the control system
- recommendations for improvement
SOME OF THE WONDERS WE FIND
Someone got their water chemistry wrong…
If you use a lot of cheap iron components in your heating system and and don’t check the pH, you’ll get in trouble.
This installer used an unlined steel tank, insulated it himself with Armaflex and used an iron circulator pump shown here.
He could have bought a glass lined tank for less and a bronze pump for $20 more (in that size) and had a happy system.
THERE’S A STORY HERE…
Didn’t Einstein say something about doing the same thing over and over and over again and expecting a different result?
This comes to you from a legendary bad installer who has more court cases than working geo systems. Where to start?
It’s a 2 heat pump (HP) system and he couldn’t figure out how to start the flow center (ground loop pumps) from either HP so he added 2 relays, then cut their wires off, still showing. He then removed the control transformer and powered the controls from the next door unit. That didn’t work so he cut off all the pump wires (5 pumps) and ran them 24/7. $1,100/yr for that. Next is the hard-start kit he added to help the compressor get going. Then, notice the compressor wires capped off, it has a ground fault and is burnt up!!
Needless to say, this unit will have to be replaced and he’ll be summoned to court again…