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People emPOWERing Princeton: Hello Sunshine Goodbye Gas

Hello Sunshine Goodbye Gas

Meet Mike, owner of the Hello Sunshine Goodbye Gas House from Princeton’s 2023 Green House Tours event. If you missed the event head over to the Municipality of Princeton YouTube channel and watch four of the homeowners give tours of their houses, including Mike! This almost fully electric house has a rooftop solar array, geothermal heat pump, battery backup system,  induction cooktop, and electric vehicle chargers. Mike has plans to fully electrify his home when those appliances require replacement.

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Geothermal Heat Pump

This is a vertical closed loop system with two pipes drilled 600 ft. deep. Mike shared that the drilling process, machinery pictured to the right, took three to four days and was set up to allow him to heat and cool the entire house as well as help to heat their water heater so the gas system does not have to work as hard. He also noted the importance of having the ducts insulated and sealed, and maximizing the insulation to get the most efficiency from the system.
To heat and cool the Hello Sunshine Goodbye Gas house a four-ton Geothermal Heat Pump system was installed which utilizes the temperature below ground. A Geothermal Heat Pump is very efficient as it exchanges the more favorable temperature in the Earth through a heat exchanger. The temperature below ground stays relatively constant and depending on the climate ranges from 45℉ to 75℉ which is used to heat or cool a water supply in the pipes and then through ductwork. There are a few different types of Geothermal Systems that are determined by climate, soil conditions, land, and cost.
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Solar, Inverter, and Backup Batteries

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The batteries are charged by the solar array but can also be charged by the grid through the inverter. The batteries Mike has, which can been seen pictured, are Lithium iron phosphate batteries. Mike shared how the batteries he has can be recycled many more time than the ones currently used in electric vehicles. These batteries provide the Hello Sunshine Goodbye Gas house with power in the event of an outage and make him and his home more resilient.
Mike has 7.3 kW of solar panels on his rooftop. These solar panels send DC power to the inverter and the inverter converts the DC power to AC which is what is used in our homes and outlets. To provide Mike with reliability and resilience he also has a battery backup system. The inverter can also deliver DC power to the batteries which are used for backup storage for the house. 
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Where to learn more!

Want to find out more about how to electrify your home? Register for our Sustainable Home Expo at the Suzanne Patterson in Princeton on Saturday, March 9. You will be able to: 
  • Talk directly with contractors, solar installers, and sustainable landscapers
  • Speak with homeowners who have made upgrades
  • Learn more information in our breakout sessions:
    • Community Solar
    • Electrifying Your Home
    • Princeton’s reCAP
    • Live Induction Cooktop Demo

Are you or someone you know emPOWERing Princeton?

We are looking for a renter to be featured next in the People emPOWERing Princeton series. This renter may make sustainable energy choices such as:
  • Being subscribed to community solar
  • Uses an induction cooktop
  • Has had an energy efficiency assessment
  • Uses smart power strips, bulbs, or thermostat