Sunday - January 13, 2001: Contractors, Don’t Overbid On Geothermal Projects
Customers like the idea that they:
Bauman also recommended that parties interested in promoting the technology throw in a bit of Ed McMahon showmanship, in the form of large novelty checks for the first rebate (for commercial projects), presented at upbeat public events with a lot of publicity.
He also recommended that utilities form partnerships with the design and installation trades, and that they promote geothermal technologies with something like tabletop presentations at local professional meetings.
And don’t neglect the impact of tours and field demonstrations for end-users and professional trade partners, as well as joint training programs.
FERTILE GROUNDThe best market for geothermal, said Bauman, is an expanding school market. In order for such projects to be accepted, “You need a receptive architectural and engineering firms,” he said. A successful project also needs proven loop designers and installers, he continued. And remember to choose your drillers carefully. Don’t hire a water well driller who doesn’t also have specific experience with these projects. For example, he said, the grouting is different; applying it successfully requires experience.
Finally, “Look for a favorable geology.” Areas with caves, for example, are not good choices. Neither are areas that contain hazardous materials, which should not be disturbed. “Some things you can control, others you can’t,” he said. Geology falls into the latter category.
Publication date: 01/14/2002