contractor start-up experiences

Discussion in 'General Discussions' started by Guest, Mar 28, 2008.

  1. Guest

    Guest Guest

    I am considering entering the business of designing and installing groundsource heatpumps in the future, but I'd like to hear of some experiences other people have had starting up in this business. I'm currently living in CT, but start-up experiences from any part of the country would be good to hear about.

    What were your biggest difficulties? How would you do it over if you could?

    Is the market for these systems increasing as much as you would expect it to be by now?

    Are people skeptical about the technology?

    Are all your customers happy with the results?
     
  2. Guest

    Guest Guest

    Newbie here...

    Hi, good questions and I'll offer some thoughts. I'm not a contractor, but am excited about this technology. I'm also in CT., midstate... and had my ephiphany back in Feb. listening to WPNR's Faith Middleton's show. I couldn't believe my ears. Where have they've been hiding this stuff. I had Air cond./ref. training in the Navy, and knew when this was described on her show that it was a unique way to use an ordinary heat pump.
    As for your questions, this technology is virtually unknown to the masses. Why, it's still in it's infancy. Any one that has it would be what is termed in marketing as "early adopters". You won't find any energy companies touting the low cost benefits of it, why should they even though they've been aware of it for at least 20 years. It is a bit expensive on a retrofit, but if your'e staying put for 6-8 years it would be good to do. New construction is the best, as the cost would be amortized over 30 years (mortgage) and your savings are immediate, and exceed the added cost on the mortgage P&I. There is a "Over -55 " subdivision in Middletown that is all geothermal, But they have 3 models with 1 a working display. My wife and I went to look at it out of curiousity. Works great....
    Steve
     
  3. Guest

    Guest Guest

    Need information/help on retrofit for a home

    Dear SSivonda,

    We are "early adopters" or trying to be ones for geothermal heat. Reading about it, I think it's the way for us to go since we need a new furnace. Is retrofitting existing construction very expensive? How do you "comparison shop" when you have no clue of what you need? We have 2100 sq feet, plenty of land, and desire, but no understanding of how to do our"due diligence" using geothermal technology. Ideas please.
    Thanks,
    mceby:confused:
     
  4. Waukman

    Waukman Member

    I just upgraded our house to Geo last summer/fall. Our previous system was a 1935 coal (converted to gas) gravity furnace. For us we had to remove everything and install all new. This included duct work that existed. The main question with respect to the 'retrofit' is what type of system do you have now? If you have a forced air then the air handling will not change. When we made the change we got quotes from gas furnace dealers as well as several Geo dealers. These quotes gave us a perspective on the costs for adding the ducts and other basic changes that were going to be needed for either new gas furnace or geo. From there we got an idea of the extra delta to go geo.

    The main question you need to answer is what type of loop are you going to use. Spend the majority of your time researching this as this will be the most expensive component (usually). If you go vertical (as I did) there may be local or state laws that get involved. Know what these are. In my case (Wisconsin) I had to get state DNR approval for my wells.
     
  5. schoust

    schoust New Member

    Well I am also very interested in doing this and I'm also from Ct. and a Contractor in the State. I am looking for different way's to pick up business I have been looking at Solar also. The bottom line is if I gear up and get the proper training will people be willing to spend the money to install these types of systems?? I do believe that we might be close? And I will say if Fuel oil continues to rise without relief this could be the time for these technologies.........
     
  6. Guest

    Guest Guest

    I'm up for getting involved

    I have a geological consulting firm in Salem, Mass I am a hydrogeologist and have a geochemist on staff as well as contacts to geothermal specialists from Germany. I have given this quite some thought and i think the best way into this market is through providing consulting services to the energy efficiency companies that are booming right now but leave out any consideration of this technology. I would propose to create a regional GIS mapping of the viable system options (including advanced options such as thermal energy storage in discreet geologic formations storing cold in one aquifer and heat in a separate aquifer). This would allow us to provide these efficiency firms with the best design option very quickly without costly and time consuming site investigations and give them a cost and cost savings which they could integrate in their efficiency analysis. This is where the bulk of the work will be i believe only a fraction will end up utillizing geothermal but we could develop our buisness to service these energy solutions companies. Give me a email if anyone is interested and we can disscuss this further.

    Erik

    __________
    Erik Anderson
    President
    Basin Technologies Incorporated
    Mobile: +1 781 519 0207
    "eanderson@basintechnologies.com"
    http://www.basintechnologies.com/
     
  7. schoust

    schoust New Member

    Well Eric I sure would love to get into something like the consulting industry! Heck I have been in the Field for a lot of years and have just about had enough of turning the wrench's lol! But this type of work to me is a risk as is the sales industry. I have thought about the field of retrocommissioning on the commercial end. This is a section that i know has tremendous growth potential but at this time I do not wish to work twenty four hours a day. In a nut shell I certainly believe that the consulting field for Geo-source will be plentiful with out a doubt!! But as far as the part of the Country i live in I'm not so sure?? Ct. has an incredibly unstable energy source that continues to climb on a daily basis. If I did not have children in school right at this time I surly would end up moving to a more friendly area of the country where this type of system would be a home run!!
     
  8. Guest

    Guest Guest

    Lets get you some real info

    I think what i have will answer all your questions. Just let me show you what I have. Believe me I don't want to waste anybody's time even my own. I just dd the exploration for what will be the biggest geothermal power plant in the carribean you can imagine the scientific resources i have brought to bear on this.

    Just get in touch if you want but just bear in mind i would rather not have my ideas spread all over the place.

    Erik

    take a look at West Indies Power Holdings B.V. :: Home Page maybe you can recognize some of the equipment from my website
    __________
    Erik Anderson
    President
    Basin Technologies Incorporated
    Mobile: +1 781 519 0207
    "eanderson@basintechnologies.com"
    http://www.basintechnologies.com/
     
  9. Guest

    Guest Guest

    If you really want to get into the business, go take a class put on by these guys: www.heatspring.com. They offer a bunch of courses and do a great job. They have a geothermal installer certification course coming up in CT as well.
     
  10. Guest

    Guest Guest

    Thanks I will have to take the courses in Boston this
    October. But I would really be interested in reviewing the literature for the course if anybody knows where to find that. And if anybody is looking for more work I could probably put something together before then. But from what I gather you guys are all very busy these days.
     
  11. Guest

    Guest Guest

    Looks like you guys are doing geothermal power generation. Are you doing geothermal heat pumps as well or just electricity generation?
     
  12. Guest

    Guest Guest

    Yeah that was power generation. I was looking to get into the geoexchange end of things just so I could eventually have a real 9 to 5 somewhere in the states. mostly i have experience with water development for municipalities or export overseas but I have been doing alot of reasearch on this technology
     
  13. Guest

    Guest Guest

    we are really geological consultants but I like to spread the word about this technology, I see a huge market for this out there considering the cost of fossil fuels and the fact that less than 1% of structures use these systems
     
  14. Guest

    Guest Guest

    I agree with the theory that this industry could take off. I've been in sales for years and see opportunity everywhere from municipal applications to residential and commercial - particularly in the northeast where fuel oil heats so many homes, and in rural areas where fuel oil, propane, wood or pellets are the only options....Or of course geothermal!

    I often think of how hard it would be to become a 'green' consultant/contractor. I play with biodiesel, almost got a wind turbine (stupid neighbor!) and have considered methane capture for our cattle confinement operation. Now I just need to get a geoexchange system installed before it starts getting cold out...
     
  15. Guest

    Guest Guest

    Hi
    well it would be a be to become a 'green' contractor and This is a section that i know has tremendous growth potential but at this time I do not wish to work twenty four hours a day. In a nut shell I certainly believe that the consulting field for Geo-source will be plentiful with out a doubt!! But as far as the part of the Country i live in I'm not so sure?? Ct. has an incredibly unstable energy source that continues to climb on a daily basis.
    ========================================================
    maxi

    California Drug Treatment
     

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