Recent Review: With all of our HAVC units (2 AC and a boiler) past their expected lifespan (all >20 years old), we decided to consider switching over the whole system in our 105 year old house to geothermal. We first met with Robert Hoffmann in August, 2012 to see the house, explain geothermal HAVC to us and give us a bid. He is an engineer and gave us all the nitty gritty detail we wanted to see on how it works, where it goes, what problems they had in the past and how they have changed things to avoid those problems. Because of the drilling needed, geothermal is very expensive to install ($60,000 for us), and only really feasible because of the 30% federal tax credit (that's credit, not deduction) which is currently offered. Of course, it would also have been expensive to change over 2 AC units and a boiler to high efficiency new ones. We thought about it for a couple of months. We took Robert up on his offer to show us the similar units he had installed in his own home. By November, we were ready to sign the contract, but put it off a few weeks to arrange a home equity loan to finance the project. Once we signed the contract, we were given a start date of Monday January 7. On Wednesday Jan 2 I got a call asking if the drilling people could come by that afternoon to look over the yard. Geothermal is basically a heat pump that uses the ground for heat exchange. It required drilling 200' (some companies only do 150 - go with 200!) holes in the ground. Then long hoses go down one hole, back out, and down the next. The drilling requires a drilling rig fit into your yard (they have different sized rigs for different situations). The person from Durbin drilling (which contracts with Hoffmann Brothers) came out and did an expert evaluation of where to put the wells with the least disruption to the yard. On Friday Jan. 4, the drilling rig showed up to set up to begin drilling on Monday. I have to say, I was amazed at the skill of the person who drove the rig. That truck was as long as our house, and he maneuvered it around with inches to spare, without damaging my maple tree, dogwood tree or house. Drilling took a few days - it leaves a big mess, but that gets taken care of in stage two. Meanwhile, the inside work started. This required changing out the old AC units for new air handlers and getting them set up, taking out the boiler (and pipes and radiators) and old hot water heater and setting up new water heaters and the geo pump units. Planning was required to switch out the old boiler and turn on the new furnace without losing heat for more than a few hours. Long story short - they did a superb job. The inside work also included taking 12 radiators all through the house. They had to break them into pieces because they were so big and heavy. They were very careful about protecting floors, etc in the process. New ductwork was put in as needed. As the inside work was finishing up, a second team from Durbin Drilling came to dig trenches to connect the 6 wells, drill through the foundation to connect the system in the basement, and fill in the trenches. They were great, too. They did their best to compact dirt (and ground limestone) from the drilling back into the trench and smooth out the dirt. Doing a nice job of that was an add on to the standard contract - be sure to ask for that... it would have been really hard for us to do that. We will be responsible for final grading and re-seeding the lawn. Once all installed, the main guys on the job (Jordan and Scott from Hoffmann Bros) made sure everything was set up and working well. After a few days, we figured out that one of the really fancy thermostats was not working. Once they confirmed that, it was replaced right away and assured me they will come back to tweak whatever is needed for a year. The whole job, start to finish, took just over two weeks. We now have Of course, we have follow up to do - besides the lawn, we have radiator holes to patch and walls to paint. But we knew that from the start. Because it was so quick, it the timing of payments had to be adjusted to fit with the loan approval. Robert Hoffmann was completely understanding about that. We now have two new AC units, geothermal heat (with back up electric & gas heat) - and hot water as a bonus. We were very happy with Hoffmann Brothers, start to finish. They communicated quickly and clearly, answered all of our questions, and were careful about things like pets in the house.