- September 18, 2012
Proud Green Home
When installing a geothermal system, if there isn’t enough room for a horizontal racetrack maybe you can still get a horizontal slinky loop system to fit in the space you have. You only need 90 feet of trench per loop versus 300 feet for a racetrack. If you still don’t have enough room then you have two options: directional bore or vertical loop. The directional bore is slightly cheaper and less messy but the vertical loop is a safer bet to not encounter unforeseen problems.
A vertical loop system is installed by drilling vertical holes, or bore holes, at a depth of 150 to 300 feet per ton capacity and spaced 15 to 20 feet apart. U-shaped loops are then placed in the holes then backfilled and sealed to enhance thermal conductivity for maximum efficiency. As you can see the space needed for vertical loop is quite minimal.
A directional bore loop system is cheaper and less messy because it does not require any excavation other than the header trench. This is a process of drilling horizontally 15 feet under the ground surface to install the loop field. Another advantage of directional boring is the ability to go under obstacles and disturbs less surrounding landscaping.
This expert insight brought to you by Jerry Brown, owner of Brown Heating and Air Conditioning and a GeoComfort Geothermal System dealer for Enertech Global LLC.