Solar geyser installations
SOLAR WATER HEATING SOLUTIONS
Commercial | Residential | Industrial Experts
sOLAR wATER hEATING
Solar water heating (or solar thermal) uses sunlight to heat the water you’ll then use in your bathroom or kitchen.
Solar water heating should not be confused with solar photovoltaic (PV) technology, which produces electricity. The output of solar PV panels can be diverted to heat water, but solar water heating is more efficient. This means it will take up much less roof space than PV panels would for the same energy output. Your home could even have both solar thermal and solar PV, to generate the largest amount of renewable energy from your available roof area.
Producing domestic hot water for showers, baths and hot taps can be a significant proportion of a household’s energy use. This is particularly true once a house has been well-insulated to reduce the space heating demand. Solar collectors facing anywhere between south-east & south-west, at an angle of between 20 and 50 degrees, will give the best performance. However, even an east or west facing panel can still be worthwhile – it just needs to be about 20% bigger. Solar water heating will be best in a house that has a larger hot water demand – such as for a family or a house-share. For a one person household, with low hot water use, it won’t be as cost-effective.
As with heat pumps and biomass boilers, you will need a cylinder or tank to store solar-heated water. This means it’s not easy to combine solar water heating with a combi boiler. See the related question below for more on combi boiler and solar energy. Rooftop panels are the most common, in a spot that will minimise pipe runs to the cylinder. Or you could mount panels at ground level if they’ll have a clear outlook. See the related questions below for more on planning permission for installing the panels.
A solar thermal system uses the energy from the sun to heat up water to use in the home. The way a solar thermal panel works is quite simple: it absorbs the heat from the sun with panels that are called solar collectors. The heated water or heat-transfer fluid then runs from the collectors to your hot water cylinder. This way a solar water heating system can provide your home with free heated water. Solar thermal panels are not to be confused with solar panels, which use the energy from the sun to generate electricity. As such, solar panels and solar thermals are two very different technologies. Using solar energy has many advantages, among them the money saved on energy bills, the reduction of your carbon footprint and the low maintenance, making solar thermal a great investment.
Are Solar Thermal Panels Suitable for Your Home?
Purchasing a solar thermal system is a significant investment at first. Therefore, before purchasing one, it is important to ask yourself a couple of questions. The three most important things you have to keep in mind are:
- Do you have a spot that catches a lot of sun?
- Do you have enough space for a hot water cylinder?
- Do you have a boiler that is compatible with solar water heating?
Spot in the Sunlight
Solar thermal power generation needs the sun as the main energy source. Therefore, the optimal position to be situated is somewhere with direct sunlight for the most part of the day. This could be on a roof space which faces east to west through south. Different placement is still possible, however, the efficiency of heating water will be decreased. However, they don’t necessarily need to be placed on a roof. Other possible places could be on a flat roof or hang from a wall, as long as it gets direct sunlight.
A solar thermal requires a dedicated solar cylinder. If you don’t own a solar cylinder, the existing cylinder is replaced or a dedicated cylinder with a solar heating coil is added.
Fortunately, most conventional boilers are compatible with solar water heating systems. Your home is not compatible when you have a combination boiler without a hot water tank, however.