Frequently Asked Questions about Solar water heater systems
What can Solar Hot Water Systems be used for?
Solar Hot Water Systems are used across the United States and around the world for nearly every water heating application imaginable. Whether your application is residential, commercial, industrial, municipal or agricultural, Evacuated Tube Solar Collectors and Flat Plate Solar Collectors are perfect for the job. Solar Hot Water Systems shine in systems designed for Domestic Hot Water production, Radiant Floor and Space Heating, and Solar Pool and Spa/Hot Tub Heating.
How does Solar Hot Water Differ from Solar Electricity?
Solar Electric, uses the energy trapped within sunlight to generate an electrical charge. This charge can then be stored and used to power any number of electronic and electric devices. Solar Hot Water, however, is also known as Solar Thermal, and uses the tremendous energy trapped within sunlight to generate heat. The heat is then transferred by any number of mechanisms to water. We can use that water for nearly every hot water application from domestic hot water use to radiant space heating to pool/spa heating. In, fact, Solar Thermal technology is much further advanced than PV technology today – a typical PV panel has an efficiency of 14 – 20% where a Solar Hot Water System has an efficiency of 80% or better. This makes Solar Hot Water Systems one of, if not, the most cost-effective and affordable uses of Solar Energy available today.
Will a Solar Hot Water System Work on a Cloudy Day?
Yes, to an extent. Solar Hot Water Systems do not only work with direct sunlight, but also with Solar Radiation. Even on cloudy days, there is ample solar radiation, which allows Evacuated Tube Solar Collectors to provide significant performance, even in these conditions. However, the performance of the Solar Collector will be less than it is on a bright, sunny day.
How Much Money Does the Average Household Spend on Hot Water?
This is a calculation that is made using the price of your heating fuel and how much hot water you use. You know better than anyone how much money you spend on water heating every month and year – just by looking at your hot water bill. Of course, most Americans find that just heating water accounts for nearly 20% or more of their annual energy bills. When you take Home Heating into account as well, overall heating at your home can cost 40% or more of your annual energy bills.
Can I use Solar Hot Water Systems to Heat my Pool or Spa?
Yes. In fact, Pool Heating is considered one of the most affordable, efficient and cost-effective uses of Solar Hot Water Systems today. Heating a pool or spa can require a significant amount of propane, natural gas or electricity, and as energy prices continue to rise, it is becoming a more and more unnecessary and unaffordable expense. However, a heated pool often provides the benefit of being able to swim earlier in the spring and later in the fall in all locations, and even all year round in some locations.