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Thread: researching a greenhouse

  1. #9
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    Alvin, this greenhouse will be a highland environment. I will have to heat it in the winter and cool it in the summers.

    We already do have a separate circuit that is run out to the spot where I want the GH (hot tub we're getting rid of), but the circuit was shorting out realatively frequently. I still have to have an electrician take a peek at it to see why. At any rate, I will definately want a backup (I, too, was thinking about a backup kerosine heaters).

    I'm not too worried about humidity (at least in the warm months). Also, actual cooling will only be a power draw (nights) for about two months. I think I can cool it off enough in the daytime with just vents, though I will have to interogate the GH people about that.

    Tony, I also saw tripple wall 10MM....but the cost was prohibitive. I need to be able to afford the darn thing! [img]http://www.**********.com/iB_html/non-cgi/emoticons/new/smile_n_32.gif[/img]
    17 Nash Rd.
    North Salem, NY 10560

    YOU! Outta my gene pool!

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    Hi Scholaty,

    I can recommend you on my greenhouse, the manufacturer is Rion and it is also sold as STC in the USA or Oasis in the UK.
    Here's a link of it being built step by step http://www.cpukforum.com/forum/viewtopic.php?t=12372

    If you've got some questions just let me know.
    Yossi

  3. #11
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    You can cool via venting only. However that requires a large volume of air exchange. Something on the order of replacing the entire greenhouse air volume every minute or two. Greenhouse get very hot very fast in the summer when the sun is out!! Also keep in mind that without evaporative cooling your inside air temperature will at best be equal to the outside air temperature. In practice it will run 5-10degrees higher depending how fast you vent. With evaporative cooling it is possible to run the greenhouse inside air temperature LOWER than outside air temperature. While at the same time reducing humidity drop or if desired increasing it above outdoor levels.

    Personally I wouldn't bother with a triple wall 10mm. I think you will find the r factor only slightly better than the double wall 8mm, and noticeably less than the triple wall 16mm. The r value is related to the number of layers but more significantly the thickness of the air pocket.

    Glenn,

    You can design a greenhouse to run at whatever conditions you want on a year round basis. The deciding factor however will be.. can you afford the energy expenses! If your wanting to run lowland conditions in a subfreezing climate then you would need a really well insulated structure. A big wallet for the heating bills. I have been considering something to grow lowland plants in and it might come down to building my own with polycarbonate 8mm walls covered by an inflated 2 layer poly.

    As for winter power failures. They are an ulcer maker.. so are summer power failures! In the past I had one of each.. a winter freeze and a summer roast. That was a hobby greenhouse with just one heater and one set of circuit breakers. In one of the cases the power didnt go out but the breaker tripped.. which has the same effect when everything shuts down ;/

    Now I have my greenhouse(s) set up with an automatic generator. TWO heaters TWO vent fans Everything on it's OWN circuit breaker. Probably excessive for a hobby situation but there other ways to avoid the ulcers. Alarm systems are great. They can be as simple as one of those wireless temperature sensors so you can keep an eye on things to ones that will ring a firebell if the temperature gets too hot or cold beyond whatever setpoint is set. They even make little computer gadgets that monitor a greenhouse environment and will make phonecalls to a couple preset numbers if temperatures go outside preset setpoints. You can even call them up and get a message about the current conditions. They of course require a phoneline within the greenhouse.

    Tony
    Is that a Nepenthes in your pocket or you just happy to see me?

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    Hi Schloaty,
    I knew one grower that put black painted 55 gallon drums of water under the benches as a buffer should power be lost. Heat is slowly released and should give you a day or so of temps above freezing for your collections. If properly placed it can also reduce your heating requirement too if the solar heat gain is exposed to your drums. I'd also seriously consider insulating the North wall with polystyrene panels.
    I saw one cool experimental technology online that blew tiny styrofoam beads into the cavity between glazing panels every night as insulation then in the morning they were vacuumed back out into storage. Gave the equivalent of about R-19 insulation yet didn't block any sun transmission. Don't know if any hobby greenhouses use the technology though (bummer).

    Kirk

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    Well, I'm not too worried about the energy bill - can't be too much more than all my lights + running the hot tub was (hot tub is now drained & off, but at the time it was quite a drain).

    I do think I will have to get a swamp cooler ( I assume that's what an evaporative cooler is, right?) for the summers....

    I like the idea of the black dums of water as heat-sinks. That's inovative!

    The north wall isn't much of an issue, as that will be protected by the house (the greenhouse will be in the backyard about 20' from the house). Though I suppose it wouldn't hurt (east wall, too, in my case) to add the extra winter insulation because it won't block any sunlight.
    17 Nash Rd.
    North Salem, NY 10560

    YOU! Outta my gene pool!

  6. #14

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    LOL,
    My pool pump added nearly $50-60 month to my electric bill
    Usually 90-150 month (use natural gas for hot water/and cooking)
    Yet my brother who lives in Fairport(near Rochester NY) heats his house w/ electric and runs all electric appliances gets a bill maxing at $150 month for coldest months. They have a hydroelectric coop. Consider moving there as schools are great too...

    I've heard of people stacking 1 gallon milk jugs (filled with water) against the North wall too if you don't want to eliminate space under benches w/ drums.

    Kirk

    P.S. Knew Phil sold greenhouses but thought since you were looking for 6MM polycarbonate or greater in your greenhouse, felt it was okay to post links. Hope that was right. If not, I'll discontinue doing that. Sorry in advance if that's the case

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