My original goal in 2006 was to hit $7,000 for the system. It kept inching up as time when on. The Ventilation system and the Junction Box were unexpected. Quite frankly, Shipping and Rental Costs (especially for shipping the Flush Cart) got out of control. Installation was also more than expected. Also, in early 2008 when I began to re-price everything, I noticed a significant jump in the cost of everything… For instance, systems that I looked at 9 months earlier seemed to jump up by $2,500 or more.
Over the summer of 2008, when propane was going to cost me over $3,000 for the winter, the payoff would have been under 3.5 years. With the sub-prime meltdown and energy prices falling (except at the electric company), the ROI went back up.
Had it not been for the sub-panel, ventilation upgrade, increased installation costs and the craziness at the end with the Flush Cart rental and the huge shipping costs, I would have shaved $2,700 off of the total cost of the system.
I could have saved another $600 on installation if I had:
At least the electricity from the panel and the pumps was ready to go. The vendor said that they would do the sheet metal to connect to the new duct work and I was fine with that. Another issue was connecting the desuperheater to the Hot Water heater. In this case, the installers totally screwed that up (it leaked) and I re-worked it a few days later. You can probably approximate how to run the lines and do most of it before hand.
The Flush Cart and Fusion Welder were not that expensive to rent; however, shipping these devices cost me nearly $400…. not to mention longer rental times because I had a 3 day wait after the unit was installed to get the tubing between the pumps and the GSHP. So… get all of your ducks in a row and you can save a lot of money in this area. Also… try to rent them locally. In my case, I was just flat out stuck.Let me say something about the tubing in between the pumps and the GSHP. The tubing I’m using is 1” tubing from Goodyear. It is a “Washdown” hose that will handle 300psi. The tubing from the installer was 150psi Goodyear pipe. The fitting for the hoses are 1” “serrated” brass fittings that you slide the tube over and clamp each side down with two steel ring clamps. You need a total of 8 clamps. The fittings for the tubes come in sizes that easily screw on to the pumps and GSHP. Again, this is something that you can prepare for ahead of time. You may have to coordinate with the installers to make sure they will not balk at something you did and you need to make sure you get the right brass parts for the GSHP.
With regards to the GSHP vendor/installer, BEFORE you purchase that unit, make absolutely sure that they know what you are doing. If they don’t like you doing much of the system ask them why. If they don’t have a good answer, find the unit from someone else. Typically, these units take two installers… You are paying $150-$200 per hour for the both of them to do work that you could consider doing yourself….
I’m not too disappointed about going over budget since everything that had to be looked at… had to be upgraded. Also, I did not have a good grasp on the entire installation process, so… I paid for things I could have done myself. I hope this saves you a bit of money. I feel that I could have easily come under $8,000 if I knew this stuff ahead of time.
Another "tiny" little fact that I forgot to mention was that my Furnace and Air Conditioner were 16 years old. Although they ran fine, I was due for a replacement soon. Technically, I coud have calculated the cost of the replacement of these and deducted them out of the total cost... I elected not to do that.