Heat pump in basement?

Page 1 of 3  
I live in the upper Hudson River Valley(Albany, NY). The temperature in the winter hovers around 25 degrees for about 2 months. My full basement stays around 55 degrees. I know that it is considered very impractical to install it outside. What are the pros and cons of installing an air source heat pump in the basement? The relative mild temperature there should allow for very efficient heating. Richard
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
snipped-for-privacy@gmail.com wrote:

Far too small a volume--you'd heat or cool the basement faster than the rest of the house. Not feasible at all.
In that environment, your best bet is ground source of one kind or another. They're great--had one (Water Furnace brand, one of the best).
--
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

I am not sure what you mean by small volume. The basement is 1400 square feet, 8 feet high and the floor is 6 feet below grade. Are you implying that the basement would cool so much that the heat pump would not work efficiently? Richard
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
snipped-for-privacy@gmail.com wrote:

Of course...what's the volume of the living space you're trying to heat/cool in comparison? On top of that, since the area is closed, there's no where for the now heated/cooled air to replenish from so next cycle you're starting from essentially the ending point of the last.
Every degree you change the temperature in the living area will have to make a corresponding change in the temperature of an equal air volume plus the efficiency factor--the old saying of "you can't beat Mother Nature, the 2nd Law says you can't even break even" is still true.
It simply can not work...
--
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

I am assuming that the replenishment of heat comes from the basement walls, they are concrete block with no insulation. If the ground in which they are in contact with is 55 degrees? or so, there would seem to be a lot of heat transfer if the air in the basement got very cold.. I will, however, consider what you have said. Anyway, it was just a thought to try and save fossil fuels and money. I should have pointed out that my house is very well insulated and we keep things cool in the winter and supplement my gas furnace with electric heaters. My total heating bill for last winter was less than $600.(natural gas at $1.40/therm). Richard
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
wrote:

You got him to bit twice, be satisfied with that.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
On Wed, 2 Jul 2008 20:05:45 -0700 (PDT), " snipped-for-privacy@gmail.com"

The replenishment heat from the walls won't be able to conduct from the earth outside the walls fast enough to keep up with the heat pump. The "heat" flows like this:
Earth (1) ==> Basement Walls (2) ==> Basement Air (3) ==> Heat Pump (4)
Heat flow from (1) to (3) will be much slower than from (3) to (4). The only way to compensate for that would be for the volume of (3) to be much larger than the volume you are heating.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
snipped-for-privacy@gmail.com wrote: ...

That's nice to assume but don't believe it'll be adequate. No estimate of the size of house to heat and I'm assuming it's desirable to keep the basement at something near a habitable condition.
If there is no restriction whatsoever on that, I it could manage to be a contributor but would imo not be the economical use of the investment. Of course, besides the size of the heat sink/source issue, the outdoor unit would noisy if installed in the house.
The ground source, otoh, would be quite economical to operate.
--
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

it is an interesting question...
before writing it off.... compare... what is the surface area of the basment walls compared to the surface area of the buried pipes...?
Mark
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
Mark wrote: ...

More directly to the point is the comparison of the conductivity and heat capacity of the soil vis a vis the air.
The problem of yet not knowing even the size of the heated space relative to the basement is also limiting in having a clue as to the sink/source sizing.
--
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

the heat from the living area would sink into the basement...
what the OP needs is a ground water heat pump.......
and lots and lots of insulation!
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
snipped-for-privacy@aol.com wrote: ...

That's occurring anyway and certainly not by "sinking".

Which, if you will read my first response is precisely what I recommended...

Given the level of cost he claims for last winter, it would seem either the house is very small, the setpoint is extremely low, or the house is pretty well insulated. Then again, maybe it's global warming and the winter was mild last year...
--
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

Good idea, esp if it's damp. If it isn't, you might use a soaker hose and a solenoid valve and humidistat to keep the basement air 50% RH while you put a window AC through a stairwell wall, with the warm side in the living space. The main mechanism for upward heatflow in soil is evaporation from lower soil layers and vapor movement through voids and condensation above.

That's irrelevant, since the heat would come from the ground.

That also sounds good, with a large cheap swimming pool in the basement with a thick layer of ice on top and a little fresh water flow as needed. The Climatemaster 27 is a nice $5K 3-ton water source heat pump with a COP of 5.

Balderdash :-)
Nick
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
On Jul 3, 8:08am, snipped-for-privacy@ece.villanova.edu wrote:

That is true, but even without insulation the surface area of the basement is not large enough to move enough heat. It also is a problem because over weeks, the temperature of the surrounding ground will become saturated (heat or cold) and will no longer be efficient. The standard method is to bury pipes and pump air or liquid though them. They should cover a large area depending on local ground conditions and heat - cooling loads.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

Looks like you didn't read the part of my posting you snipped.
Nick
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
On Jul 3, 4:43pm, snipped-for-privacy@ece.villanova.edu wrote:

Sorry it still will not work. The efficiency will drop to almost nothing. You don't have enough exchange area.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
snipped-for-privacy@ece.villanova.edu wrote: ...

As proposed as an air-exchange unit w/ the basement volume, no way...
--
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

That space will warm up as you cool the living area (cool down as you heat the living area). That means it shortly will become very hot or cold and will not allow the heat pump to function efficiently.
Your idea is a good one however. It is possible to put long pipes into the ground and to move air through them to supply the heat pump. Those pipes need to be about six foot below grade and you need a lot. Local conditions will determine if the idea will work for you. I have seen several people around me use that system.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
On Wed, 02 Jul 2008 18:32:44 -0700, snipped-for-privacy@gmail.com wrote:

At one time I had a Thermastor heat pump water heater in the basement. It worked quite well to heat the water. Not only did it dehumidify the basement efficiently, it also turned it into a walk-in cooler.
Basement temp ended up around 55F.
--

=================================================
Franz Fripplfrappl
  Click to see the full signature.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
it wouldn't take long for the heat pump to remove all the heat from the basement, then you'd have 32 degree floors and frozen plumbing.
s

Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

Site Timeline

Related Threads

    HomeOwnersHub.com is a website for homeowners and building and maintenance pros. It is not affiliated with any of the manufacturers or service providers discussed here. All logos and trade names are the property of their respective owners.