Drilling Completed

The drilling is done. It was loud. It was dusty. It was awesome!

The drill holes were done at 11 degrees in one direction, and 22 degrees in the other. This is approximate based on my measurements.

Top view, looking down on the roof of the house:

Front view, looking at a cross section towards the front of the house.

Some videos:
Drill through overburden (aka. top soil).

Drilling through sandstone.

Feeding the copper heat exchanger down the 100ft hole.

The target.

The equipment arrives at 09:00.

45min later it's ready to go.

What I see from my living room.

Drilling gets underway.

It makes a mess.

What the drill bit looks like. It sounded LOUD. I measured it at 105dB at 5 meters away. When the drill shaft is pulled up and each link is separated - it would spike at 120dB.

Examine the hole.

Prepare the heat exchanger to go down. Notice the block of metal for grounding in case of lightning strikes.

Send the copper heat exchanger down the hole.

Fill it with silica sand (crushed quartz) up to the rock-overburden interface.

Then fill the top with "hole plug" bentonite. This is a form of clay that seals the top of the drill hole to prevent surface water from getting down deep in the rock.

Repeat 2 more times, and you're done for the day.

Next - we wait for the furnace unit to arrive and final stages of installation take place.


Drilling today

Well, the contractor from Earth Energy called me last week to arrange a time to start drilling for my furnace. "The phoenix has landed" he announced in his usual colourful exclamation.

And about the same time I got an email from a reader of this blog advising me to stay away from them. I'm not surprised since my experience with the owner was been less than reassuring. When the unit is installed, I'll be asking questions and taking notes. Such a niche furnace - it'll be hard to find good maintenance should this contractor go under.

Your thoughts on what info to ask for is most welcome fellow readers. Here's me list so far.
  1. What's the refrigerant used in the heat exchanger?
  2. How much refrigerant?
  3. At what pressure is the heat exchanger filled to?
  4. Make a list of parts inside the unit (small moving parts will likely be the first to break down)

And yes, there will be photos and videos of the mess they'll be bringing down on our house.