Idaho Trying a diy experiment

Discussion in 'General Discussions' started by David Knowlton, Mar 29, 2016.

  1. So I've got some invaluable information for my other thread.
    But a lack of trustable installers in my area, I'm seriously deciding in just trying it myself. No designer or no contractor (except a friend to dig) no hvac. I've done my heat gain/loss and I need 22000btu cool and 60,000 heat.
    That said my main push is for a resonable ac, any heat will be a bonus. I have found a 1 ton wshp on ebay for $300 and it's local so I can just pick it up (300$ saved). I believe I can also pick up 800-600 ft of sdr11 hdpe for around 325$. My friend is Pritty sure the digging can be done under 100$ if all goes well. Hvac right now for the 3 rooms I want to cool is all flex duct now so I have no clue what hvac will cost. And Im thinking I can build a good flow center/header.
    So if I can piece $7 to $800 buck dig a 100 to 150 ft. Trench 8' deep and bury a slinky loop and patch in the wshp into the hvac for ~600 sq feet Of the home with lots of prayer(probably head ake) hope for the best?
    Any thought, potencal problems, criticism, and expecially pointers welcome. Thanks for the read. :)
  2. urthbuoy

    urthbuoy Well-Known Member Industry Professional Forum Leader

    Lots of thoughts. But too much else going on right now, I just don't want you to see silence as acceptance.

    Your heat loss/gain is off in my 20 second look. You have all the windows (and doors) on one side of the house, which effects the heat gains the most. You have no fresh air loads. And then that just makes it all suspect.

    Not sure why you would even consider a 1 ton wshp? But if you just want to cool some rooms vs the house, go for it. It is nothing we could get away with, but there is nothing stopping you from experimenting.
  3. Hello urthbuoy good to see you, good point on the windows thanks, and their is no fresh air load( in the hvac atleast)
    I am only considering a 1 ton because it is cheep, loop size is cheap, and will give me a reasonably low price and a good understanding of how geoexchange will work for me. If I connect it to only a few rooms, then im thinking I can just use it for this one zone. if the experiment gives me reasonable results, loop temp, effency ect. it will give me the justification to install a larger one for the whole house. I was thinking down the road a 1 ton and a 3 ton would run like a 3 stage compressor. run the larger one on backup or in junction with the smaller. ect.

    But mostly because its what I can afford, its almost summer, and all I have for cooling is some window units.
  4. Hello guys,
    I really haven't gotten very far in the last few months, but I have gained ground. I would like to personally thank NEC (Norbryhn Equipment Co. in Napa Idaho) For taking the time to sell me an old unused 1 ton heat pump. They are a commercial company that literally deals with million dollar bids all the time and they were more than helpful with my little diy job. The treated me with respect and took plenty of time discussing my project, printing out manuals, helping me find parts and listening to ideas with helpful feedback, all for a mare $300. I am way pleased with their customer service and recommend them to absolutely anybody looking to buy a wshp. Later when I called and asked if they could order the brackets to hang the pump from the floor joists, the ordered them and shiped them to my home for free no questions asked, score!

    That said, I purchased a 2007 1 ton Mc quay wshp (against their electricians knowledgeable advice) with the headache of it being a 265v model when I am on a 240v grid. I believe I have solved this problem yesterday when I ordered a .5kva buck boost transformer, but if their are any electricians here I would love some advice on how to wire in the thing.

    Other ideas include duct work. my primary use for this pump will be to cool (and partially heat) about 800 sq. feet of the living room and 2 bedrooms. Thus I'll have to tie into the existing hvac or bypass it with new hvac duct work. I found online that some people were using double sided aluminum rigid foam board and aluminum tape to make insulated ducts/trunks, and I have to say I love this idea and I want to give it a try. I do however think it will be smart to have a new air return installed to avoid any competition between the existing furnace and the wshp. I plan to achieve this by running one or more 14" x 3.5" square duct up an empty, none load bearing, wall cavity to a resister either in the top of the wall or the ceiling.
    With the supply ducts, I am still unsure if I want to tie into the existing duct work with perhaps a couple back draft dampers, or just add a new register in each room. Input welcome. :)

    As far as progress with the loop I think I going to go with 2 500' sdr 11 .75" hdpe loop from high country fusion up in my home town Fairfield Id. and waiting until my uncle (who lives a few miles up the road) borrows a escivator form work and steal it for a few hrs. and dig up the lawn. I chose the lawn because the flood irrigation used should keep the ground nice and moist. I have also thought about installing perforated pipe in the trench as well and dumping the house grey water on the loops.

    Thanks for reading and stay tuned for future updates and pic.
  5. AMI Contracting

    AMI Contracting A nice Van Morrison song Industry Professional Forum Leader

  6. engineer

    engineer Well-Known Member Industry Professional Forum Leader

    I'll admit to some morbid curiosity as to how this particular science experiment pans out.
    David Knowlton likes this.
  7. weedy64

    weedy64 New Member


    I was looking at that particular unit for my shop, but I was going to have to add shipping and deal with the 265V issue so I passed. I found a selection of used units (McQuay, circa 2011) from a bank reno that were much more local to me(Sumas).

    I think I would run separate duct work if it was fairly easy, then no balancing probs.

    Running two 500' loops with all connections accessible so you can isolate each loop to purge/reverse purge with the flow station will be nice. The HP only has 1/2" connections so once purged it should cost very little to circulate the ground fluid. If the ground is really wet one loop might do it - ie you can add a second HP for other rooms later....when you get attached to AC and another "deal" comes up.
  8. So ive been rather streched with harvest lately but after my daughters 1st birthady i decided to make a little progress. I have the heat pump on saw horses behind the couch with the buck boost wired up. I was given an oldish working hottub. So i plumbed in the heat pump. So far its working wonderful.
    I dont have my circulating pump figured out yet so I have the garden hose plumed in and the flow turned way down so the water comes out about 110° Im sure this is less efficent the full flow circulating but its working wonderful and its cooling the house and heating the hot tub and its working great :). Im going to get the loops in before this fall.
    Thanks for reading.

    Best of luck to all of you :)
  9. Yes! I was very worried about the 265v and even bought against nec electric advice. But with a little research I found out that a 20$ buck boos would easily boost it up to 240+24= 264 witch was perfect. I think thats why I got such a bargin. As far as the loops, I think your right, but Im getting the trenches for next to nothing so I going to try for 4 and I can rob some for another unit if i need. Thanks for the post :)
  10. weedy64

    weedy64 New Member

    Oh thats funny, I was just reading the forum and got your post as I left the building. On the weekend I got two of my McQuays hung from the ceilings (1 in my garage and 1 of 2 in my workshop) The garage one will just be fed munipal water, mostly in the winter when we are a rain forest so no one cares, we are in 1st stage water restrictions now so "they" really care. The workshop ones are the shallow well fed units and Im just working on the plumbing for that set up.
  11. Awesome sounds like a fun weekend. :) I got two brass circulating pumps given to me.
    I'm planning on useing them for my flow center, how do you guys wire them in?

    Im thinking I was going to piggy back a relay of the fan or compressor but their is a few extra imputs on pcb I cant seem to find what they do. any other ideas?
  12. This is the board

    Attached Files:

  13. Im also using a nest 3rd gen tstat
  14. urthbuoy

    urthbuoy Well-Known Member Industry Professional Forum Leader

    edit: sorry saw relay afterwards.

    Usually pump call with compressor call.
  15. weedy64

    weedy64 New Member

    What model is your McQuay? The manual I have for mine WCCW..... shows a MicroTech III board and it has an H8 terminal strip that energizes relays for motorized valve \ pump in sync with compressor per Chris.

    Try not to electrocute anyone in the hot tub, a GFCI for HP might be a plan.
  16. wcms1012
    part # 667168100
    model #
    Urthbuoy what would be the proper way to install the relay? Piggieback of the 24vac signal from the tstat? Or piggy off the 265v swich side of the compressor relay?
    I would really like to find out more about the h8 terminal strip, it sounds like a more perfeshinal instillation.

    Attached Files:

  17. is there some literature on what all the other letters on the board mean?
  18. the hot tub and the circulation pump are bot on gfci, the heat pump is not. But that's a good point. I'm thinking I can switch the hp over to the gfci the tub is wired to, its a 50 amp circuit and the hot tub calls for 40.
  19. The manual says never to instal field relays in series with imputs. But the board has other unused conections next to the compressor the appear to light up with the compressor. One is labled l1

    Attached Files:

  20. weedy64

    weedy64 New Member

    I am only showing the additional relay only with the Microtech control board. If yours is the Mark iV board then its n/a and tying another relay in parallel to the compressor relay control would be the answer. The Mark iV was made to optionally run dual compressors so the extra L1 terminals would be a good parallel control point.

    The H8 terminal I was referring to is on a Microtech III control board on a newer model HP (WCCH, WCCW)

    I have the Install Manual IM526-11, it does not breakdown your model # past wcms101232. Call McQuay service, they will probably decode for you.

    Not to overstate the obvious but your unit is a standard range hp meaning the min EWT is 55F, does your ground loop meet that? The extended range in that era are the geothermal variety with the min EWT of 40F.

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