Solar Hot Water Systems

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Solar Hot Water Systems

Factors that will help determine what solar hot water system is best for your home.

Have you been asking yourself if you should install a solar water heater in your home and wondering what system was the best?

There are several factors that must be considered before installing a solar hot water system. A professional plumber will help recommend the right system for your home.

The solar hot water system they recommend will be based on:

  • The number of people that live in your home
  • How much water your household uses
  • The time of day the water is used
  • The quality of the water
  • The roof’s pitch
  • The climate

It is important that you understand how a solar hot water system operates.

The plumber will need to know and the needs for your household. If the tank is too small then you may run out of hot water. If the tank is too large you may waste energy storing the extra hot water,

The average person in Australia uses around 80 litres per day. The appliances you have in the home will also affect your water usage.

Factors that affect your consumption include:

  • Spa baths
  • How long you are in the shower
  • The climate of the area where you live

This is a guide the Apricus solar hot water system sizes are as following:

  • 1-2 bedrooms, 22 evacuated collectors and a 250L tank
  • 3-4 Bedrooms, 30 evacuated collectors, 315L tank
  • More than 4 bedrooms, 44 evacuated collectors, 400L tank

What exactly is a solar hot water system?

A solar hot water system uses solar collectors mounted on the roof of the home to collect energy from the sun and use it to heat up water.

There are different options that include:

  • Flat plate panels or evacuated tubs
  • Different boosting options
  • Natural has or LPG
  • Electric
  • Configurations of the system

A complete kit usually includes the following:

  • Solar collector
  • Storage heater for hot water
  • Controller
  • The pump station
  • Backup energy source

Types of Solar Collectors

The solar collector takes heat from the sun and uses it to heat up the water.

There are two main collectors:

.1 Evacuated Tubes

  • They are more modern and use the latest technology
  • They are glass tubes that have an inner heat pipe that are surrounded by a vacuum
  • They have a round surface and they are able to collect more energy
  • They are good for cooler climates since less heat will be lost
  • Efficient heat transfer
  • Very durable, cheap to replace
  • Works well with overcasts skies
  • Can be put on a smaller section of the roof

These tubes are high performance and easily transfer heat from the sun into hot water. They can be used in many different climates

.2 Flat Plates

This collector uses copper pipes that go through a glass covered collector that is connected to the water storage tank and the roof. The sun will heat up the copper pipes and the water will turn hot in the storage tank.

  • Efficient when perpendicular to the sun
  • If they are not protected frost in colder climates can lead to loss of heat
  • If the plates become damaged they are expensive to replace
  • They work best when they are facing north on the roof
Which solar collector is best?

When a person is looking for a higher performance or they live in a climate that gets cold the evacuated tubes are the best for their home. They offer several advantages that the flat plate collectors do not.

Evacuated tubes are the most efficient type for collecting energy from the sun. They are durable and if there is an accident they are less expensive to replace.

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