Turtle Lake Cottage

Turtle Lake Cottage

Wednesday, September 4, 2013

Lessons Learned - 2 years after building

It is hard to believe two years have past since we moved into Terrapin Station.  The house has had time to settle as have we!

Another summer is coming to an end, the song birds aren't singing as loud, the lake has a cold look to it and the tourists or "fudgies" as we call them have gone home.  The hummingbirds are still here building up strength for their upcoming journey to the south.

My brother Richard Dillon, has asked us several times "what would we do differently if we were to build Terrapin Station again?".  So, the rest of this post will address what we would or should have done differently:

1.  Geo-Thermal - Always choose a Closed-Loop system.

Originally we put in a Open-Loop system.  We use a well and have a great deal of Iron in the water.  This ended up causing major issues with the Geo-thermal and well.  So much so that we ended up spending $13,000 to change from an Open- Loop to Closed - Loop system.  3 new wells were dug, along with much of our roadside yard and piping for the new loop.

Neither Jack and I can remember having a discussion about the type of system, Open or Closed.  But, I am sure we did and since we needed to cut over $100k out the construction, we probably said let's go with an Open system and save $13k.....Poor Decision!

The technology for Geo-Thermal continues to get better each year and much knowledge has been gained in Geo-thermal by the professionals.

So, we saved both our regular well and Geo-thermal system and it should last longer than we will.

2.  Solar Hot Water

We chose not to add solar hot water to our solar and in retrospect, that would have been a good idea.  Heating water is a significant consumption of electricity.

3.  Add more Solar Panels

Add 5 more panels on the garage

Other than the above, we couldn't be happier!

Friday, May 11, 2012

Our House was on TV!

Jack sent out press releases to announce our LEED Platinum cerification.  The response has been very good.  Our local NBC affiliate asked to interview us and yesterday Brody McConnell interviewed us and it made the Morning News.  It was all very exciting.

Here is the link to the interview and story :  http://www.upnorthlive.com/news/story.aspx?id=752483#.T60iW3TsWHA.gmail

Monday, April 23, 2012

It has been a long time coming, but today we received official notification that Terrapin Station achieved LEED Platinum Certification US Green Building Council (USGBC).  Our home is the first single family home in Benzie County and only the 28th in the entire State of MI to achieve Platinum, the highest level available.  Our score was 8 points above the required to achieve Platinum.  Needless to say, we are overly excited and delighted.