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Story #50EarthHeatDuvall, WA

Every time we start a system up and I feel that energy coming out of the system from the Earth, that’s the “a-ha” moment, and it continues to happen today. It’s a beautiful thing.

Just as we can harness the energy from the sun and convert it into electricity, what if we could capture the natural temperature of the earth and use it to heat a space?

For Gerard Maloney, owner of a plumbing and heating business in Duvall, Wash., the moment a coworker showed him that geothermal technology was possible, he was sold. Maloney changed his company name to EarthHeat in 1998 to reflect the still very new method of geothermal heating. Using the Earth as a solar panel in a sense, the technology relies on a system of pipes to transfer heat from underground into a refrigeration compressor. The resulting change in temperature creates heat energy that is then distributed into a home, building, or pool through various passages. “We don’t create energy, we just exchange it,” said Maloney.

Maloney went into trade school for plumbing and heating at the age of 15, with the dream of creating his own path in the industry by doing things no one else was doing. He knew early on that “working with my hands was going to be my avenue through life. And it paid off.” Green energy has seen a larger market adoption over the last decade, and EarthHeat has expanded their service area beyond Washington to include Alaska, Oregon, and California.

Over the years the company has had peaks and valleys of work due to the cyclical nature of the construction industry. Maloney and his team of 14 employees have met this challenge by diversifying the services they offer to include plumbing, heating, gas piping, and excavation work. He hopes that they can continue to grow for years to come, and bring their geothermal technology to more large-scale projects.

“It was something that we put a lot of time into creating from day one, to plant the seed if you will, and now the seed’s starting to grow and we want to see it flower.”

 

Photos by Jared Moossy

  • Tim Borup, an employee of EarthHeat, inspects a plumbing job he has been working on for the last six months.

  • Timm Borup, an employee at EarthHeat, inspects a heating system that he has been working on for the last six months. EarthHeat offers plumbing, heating, gas piping, and excavation work, and has recently expanded their services beyond Washington to include Alaska, California, and Oregon.

  • Gerard Maloney talks to a customer on the phone at his office in Duvall, Wash. In the early years of EarthHeat, the use of geothermal technology was still very new, and the company spent a lot of time educating the community and clients on its benefits.

  • Gerard's son Kellen cuts old copper tubing into reusable sections. EarthHeat specializes in green energy and tries to recycle products to help eliminate waste.

  • Gerard Maloney stands in front of the EarthHeat office in Duvall, Wash. He hopes that EarthHeat will continue to grow for years to come, but admits "there is a comfort in being small and knowing your employees, knowing your customers on a personal level."

  • Gerard Maloney, owner of EarthHeat, went into trade school for plumbing and heating at the age of 15. "Working with my hands was going to be my avenue through life. And it paid off."

  • Gerard Maloney, owner of EarthHeat, ties together tubing in a pattern to later be laid under the Earth's surface as part of one of their geothermal heating and cooling systems. The process is essentially transferring heat from underground into an indoor space. "We don't create energy, we just exchange it."

  • Gerard's son Kellen welds piping together for use in EarthHeat's geothermal heating and cooling system. The welding process is not a typical metal weld but a joining of incredibly hard plastics by melting pipe and fittings or pipe to pipe in a process called fusion welding.

  • The EarthHeat office in Duvall, Wash. This small family-owned business focuses on using geothermal technology to transfer the heat below the Earth's surface into residential and commercial spaces.

  • An American flag hangs outside the offices of EarthHeat. Owner Gerard Maloney sees his role in the small town of Duvall as an employer, and takes great pride in the fact that they "started from nothing and now we have our own building on Main Street."

  • Gerard Maloney, owner of EarthHeat, meets with his employees to discuss the day's schedule before heading out on service calls. Since the business was founded in 1995, the number of employees has grown from two to 14, some of whom are Maloney's family members.

Business Details

Proprietor: Gerard Maloney
15728 Main St NE Duvall, WA 98019
PH: 425-788-5214 / Website
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