Alternative energy gaining popularity with homeowners
Posted at: 09/12/2012 5:47 PM
| Updated at: 09/12/2012 6:15 PM
By: Christine VanTimmeren | WHEC.com
A local company has seen a big boom in business as more and more people go green. Green technologies are being discussed just about everywhere from the presidential election to business to homeowners. One of the technologies that are gaining popularity is geothermal heating and cooling.
News10NBC went to a job site in Sodus Point where geothermal heating and cooling is being installed.
Terry and Gail Wolfe’s home in Sodus Point is under construction both inside and out.
Terry Wolfe said, “Well I hope it becomes a really nice patch of grass and a driveway.”
Unsightly trenches and dirt piles is what Terry sees as technology in the making. The trenches are part of an elaborate system designed to heat the Wolfe’s home using geothermal technology.
Terry Wolfe said, “From what I’m hearing you'll spend about a quarter of the amount on utilities as you would with a traditional system.”
AJ Heiligman, ACES President said, “A little bit bigger cost than a typical heating and cooling system but you factor in the tax credits and the energy costs which are going to keep rising as the years go on, some of the jobs we do have a 2-4 year payback.”
AJ Heiligman is the president of ACES, the company installing the Wolfe’s system. He said more and more people are jumping on board and going geothermal.
Heiligman said, “Five years ago we'd get one or two calls a week, now between emails and phone calls we might talk to four to five people a day.”
So how it works: Piping is buried deep inside the ground where the core temperature remains 55 degrees year round. The piping is filled with antifreeze solution that captures heat. Pumping it inside to heat your home in the winter and pushing it outside to cool your home in the summer.
Wolfe said, “It reduces the dependency on fossil fuel to heat the home and cool it. Which reduces cost and environmentally it's kind of a cool thing.”
Heiligman said, “It's a good feeling for a lot of our customers.”
The average cost to install geothermal in a home is about $20,000, but homeowners do get a 30% tax credit. Not to mention geothermal is designed to pay for itself in less than five years. So a large upfront cost, but as energy prices continue to rise, homeowners say it might not be a bad investment.