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Old 07-28-2008, 11:03 AM   #1 (permalink)
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New member from NY

Howdy. New member from NY as the title says. I have a 98 Corolla I've been getting 40+mpg in without much effort or mods, but I'm more interested in the home efficiency info I've been reading on here! The $5/gal fuel cost is killing me more than gas prices at this point, and I think I can do more with the house than the car and truck at the moment.

I'd love to get PV or wind generation setup at my house, and have been reading up on geothermal. Anything to cut my oil usage and electric too if I can.

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Old 07-28-2008, 12:40 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Welcome to ecomodder! That car is definitely a good place to start.
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Old 07-28-2008, 01:26 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Thanks! Unfortunately it's starting to require more work than I want to put into it. It has 190,000 on it, second transmission, and is burning oil apparently. The oil is then fouling the cat which throws a P0141 error which has to be fix each year so it'll pass inspection. So far it's had 3 cats in as many years, needs new front suspension, and a lot of the interior plastic is crumbling. Good gas mileage, but I think that's being negated by the repair costs.
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Old 07-28-2008, 01:33 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Time to toss a new engine in, sounds like,
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Old 07-28-2008, 01:52 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Yeah. I just don't want to spend $1500-$2000 to have someone else do it. My only other option is try to wrestle one from a u-pullit junkyard nearby. I just can't see pulling an engine without a hoist or any power tools in the rain/snow, and then trying to get it to where their loader can pick it up.
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Old 07-28-2008, 05:12 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by piercedtiger View Post
Howdy. New member from NY as the title says. I have a 98 Corolla I've been getting 40+mpg in without much effort or mods, but I'm more interested in the home efficiency info I've been reading on here! The $5/gal fuel cost is killing me more than gas prices at this point, and I think I can do more with the house than the car and truck at the moment.

I'd love to get PV or wind generation setup at my house, and have been reading up on geothermal. Anything to cut my oil usage and electric too if I can.
Hi
I always knew a 98 Corolla got 40+ mpgs. You have my deepest sympathy. but dont feel bad. There are so many people out there that get even worse mpgs than you. Before I worked the kinks out of my GreaseCar I was getting only 50-60 mpgs, diesel. Now with shorter switch over time, shorter pruge times, longer distances and summer temps (w/o one-tanking or blending) I'm getting 128 MPG, diesel. That means driving 2000+ miles before seeing a gas station and not even getting to the OEM reserve tank.

Did you price out Geothermal? Do you have the right soil? Wind? You must be on the side of a mountain or water front for that to work. If you have one of these prime locations then you got the bucks to tackle the project. I was thinking for blending or making biodiesel for oil heat. Just worried about loosing heat on a cold night. My wife wouldnt leave the house w/o taking a shower first so she would probbly die first. These oil prices are killing us too.

Last edited by SickMPGs; 07-28-2008 at 07:44 PM..
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Old 07-28-2008, 06:22 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SickMPGs View Post
Hi
I always knew a 98 Corolla got 40+ mpgs. You have my deepest sympathy. but dont feel bad. There are so many people out there that get even worse mpgs than you. Before I worked the kinks out of my GreaseCar I was getting only 50-60 mpgs, diesel. Now with shorter switch over time, shorter pruge times, longer distances and summer temps (w/o one-tanking or blending) I'm getting 128 MPG, diesel. That means driving 2000+ miles before seeing a gas station and not even getting to the OEM reserve tank.

Did you price out Geothermal? Do you have the right soil? Wind? You must be on the side of a mountain or water front for that to work. If you have one of these prime locations then you got the buck to tack on the project. I was thinking for blending or making biodiesel for oil heat. Just worried about loosing heat on a cold night. My wife wouldnt leave the house w/o taking a shower first so she would probbly die first. These oil prices are killing us too.
I'd probably be getting better mpg if it was running right and I didn't still have snow tires on!

I've been trying to read up on geothermal to find out all I can. From what I understand you can have a whole drilled down 100-200 feet or more similar to a well, run some tubing down to pump water down then back up, and fill it with grout. Then you just take the constant temp of the ground to heat or cool the water pumped through the tube. Apparently there are also heat pumps that can take the water from 40-50F to 140F by compressing it. I haven't talked to anyone that actually installs these system to verify it, but getting water hot enough to heat the house and fresh water supply without oil intrigues me! Especially if all they have to do is drill a well, drop some tube, and fill it. (Not including the mechanical equipment) Seems relatively simple and wouldn't require tearing up the entire yard. And the way oil prices are even if it cost $10,000 it would be paid for in less than 5.
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Old 07-28-2008, 06:54 PM   #8 (permalink)
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I priced a geothermal system for my homble abode and it would come to $65,000 for the equipment and was told beause the soil I have in my yard is mostly clay, it would not work well. Silt is easer to dig and would have a better heat transfer, but would make for many cracks in the basement foundation. I guess tankless water heater would be better. I heard of people saving 25% on shutting off their oil burner at differnt times of the day. Solar insentives are pittiful and some deals will be sun-setting soon, in my area. Big bucks and the payback is 11 years off. Bio-D for oil burner seems to be the only semi safe thing to lower fuel costs for home and diesel car.
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Old 07-28-2008, 07:02 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SickMPGs View Post
I priced a geothermal system for my homble abode and it would come to $65,000 for the equipment and was told beause the soil I have in my yard is mostly clay, it would not work well. Silt is easer to dig and would have a better heat transfer, but would make for many cracks in the basement foundation. I guess tankless water heater would be better. I heard of people saving 25% on shutting off their oil burner at differnt times of the day. Solar insentives are pittiful and some deals will be sun-setting soon, in my area. Big bucks and the payback is 11 years off. Bio-D for oil burner seems to be the only semi safe thing to lower fuel costs for home and diesel car.
Wow! $65,000 huh? Damn! I might have to reconsider this. I have been unable to price estimates from anyone so I had no idea what the ballpark was. That's about $20k more than I paid for my house!

Our soil isn't too bad, but it's probably mostly clay as well. I have been looking at the biodiesel to replace our oil, but I'm just not sure on making it. As in, where do I go to get the waste oil, getting the equipment to transport it, and then processing it. I've seen processing kits that supposedly make it easy to do, but that doesn't help transporting it! lol Or what kind of waste oil to get. Some are supposedly better than others. Some people say you can run it in a furnace without modification, some say you need to mod the furnace. Some say bio works fine, others say you can use SVO, while still others say it has to be a special blend. I just get such a headache trying to figure it out.
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Old 07-28-2008, 07:25 PM   #10 (permalink)
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I've been watching yahoo AltFuel Furnace since 2004 and I believe running WVO (waste Veg Oil) through a Becket oil burner is still in its toddler stages. I want a system that works w/o all the tinkering with heaters and dripping siphon nozzles that you have to hire security guards to monitor it 24/7. If you have on oil tank inside, in your basement, you may get away with making bio-D. If your oil tank is old Bio-D is like a solvent and as your dirty HHO tank becomes clean you will have to change filters a lot.(you'll know its time to change the filter when you have no heat or hot water in the house) Rip out old tank and put in new one, first. Getting grease from local Japanese, Mexican and Greek places are better than Burger or Chinese or Deli's because of the flower or the Partially Hydrogenated (Creamy) oils they use. Only pick up oil from places that change it once a week or more. Some places dump 5 - 10 gallons a day in there 55 gallon drums. If they're good about keeping the lid on it you wont have as much water to wash out. Google biodiesel kits. pay $2-3k for a system. It will pay for itself within 2 years depending on how much Methanol goes for. $1 a gallon fuel but not 100% sure on that, they say .75 cents in the add because they want your business. You will have to get the Titration right or your seals will get eaten away. The guys that are doing it end up making glycerin soap or dump the byproducts on their lawn. Good Luck!


Last edited by SickMPGs; 08-11-2008 at 11:30 PM..
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