The Big Dig

Apologies to anyone with a slow internet connection, because this is going to be a very photo-heavy post. I just got back from the house and an accompanying near-panic-attack, and I think the story of my visit is best told in picture format, with captions detailing my thought process.

Whoa! It looks like they were here to do the digging for the geothermal system! Neat!

Yup, that’s definitely a lot of dirt – can’t wait to see what they did!

 HOLY COW there is a dirt ravine and peninsula and dirt mountain
in what used to be the back yard! 😮
(Turns slightly to the left)
OMG THERE USED TO BE TREES THERE
…AND THERE TOO!! AND NOW THERE ARE ONLY TIRE TRACKS AND MISERY!!
(At this point I may have burst into tears.)
OMG MY STREAM IS GONE, AND THE SPRING AND THE TREES AND
EVERYTHING GOOD IN THE WORLD… SOB
AND IT’S YOUR FAULT!!! (sniffle) i hate you backhoe
(Walks further along desolate moonscape)
 
Oh wait… there’s the stream. And the spring. And most of the big trees…
I guess this area was probably really mostly honeysuckle
(sniffle)
and wow, this is really a remarkably large hole…
hey dogs, come check out this trench
NOOOOO WHERE ARE YOU GOING?!
Well, I guess I have to follow…
this is sort of an interesting perspective on the house
And geologically, really quite fascinating…
Sand!

Doo de doo… I will just pretend I am walking on the beach.
How the &#%$! did you get up there?!?!
ARGH! Get in the truck, we’re going home!

4 thoughts on “The Big Dig

  1. It's kind of terrifying to visit the house every day and see what's changed, isn't it? Also, we put a 3 ton geo system in the Memorial house and love it… we only had one issue when the power went out with the electric backup coming on and having one whopping electric bill.

    When is your planned move-in date? Things are definitely coming along.

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  2. Totally frightening, Kit! I am scared to think what I'll find today… I think that whole area they cleared must be in preparation for another giant trench. I knew we'd need a ton of pipe because our soil is so sandy – I think they are laying something like 4000'!

    Didn't realize you guys have geothermal too – did you post about the installation?

    We are hoping to move in November – fingers crossed! They are starting drywall today. I am obsessing about paint colors so much that I'm pretty sure Benjamin Moore and Sherwin Williams will be appearing in my dreams.

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  3. LOL I have pictures like this too only it's in our front yard. Our neighbors thought we were insane. We did vertical bores so there wasn't as much digging involved but they still did a number on the yard. The grass still doesn't grow there very well.

    Yes with sandy soil you need significantly more pipe per ton. My parents put in a geothermal system not too long after us and they have pure sand too. They put in two extra bores for the same size system.

    Do you mean 400' feet though? 4000' is way too much for a residential install. Did they do a load calc on your house? Did you calc one yourself to compare?

    Didn't you tell them where to run the lines? Typically you run horizontal lines in a flat open field. Sorry to tell you but those trees along the trenches will have a hard time surviving with their roots cut like that especially this time of year. That's why we had to put ours in our front yard. The one tree that was close to the trench took a big hit be we think it will survive. We had to cut down another before we started because there was no way it could have made it. And how exactly are they going to make all of those curves in the lines? I mean you can bend the pipe but there is nothing to keep it from staying curved and you don't want it touching sand directly you want to surround it with some good fill. Just make sure that is what they did before they cover it all back up again.

    Sorry for all the questions just trying to help. : P

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  4. Thanks for the food for thought! Not sure I can answer all your questions, but we'll definitely keep an eye on things. I was basing the 4000' on the specs, which said they were digging five trenches, and that each trench would have 800' of geothermal pipe. Seemed like a lot to me, but I have nothing to compare it to!

    I don't think there was a good way for us to avoid all the trees – the loops had to go in the back meadow area, which has a steep hill and pond on one side so it was pretty constrained.

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