Solar Hot Water Information
Benefits of installing solar hot water at your home
Solar hot water is a great way of reducing your household electricity bills. Would you like to produce hot water for your home using free energy from the sun? A solar hot water system can save you more than 70% on your hot water heating costs! We have listed the key benefits of solar hot water below:
Reduce your current electricity or gas bill!!!
Protect yourself against continually rising gas and electricity prices
Produce free hot water from the sun
Reduce your home’s carbon footprint
Government solar hot water rebates make solar hot water very affordable
Your Solar Quotes take the hassle out of finding solar hot water quotes from top rated local solar installers. The best way to learn about solar hot water and decide which type of solar hot water system best suits your needs is to talk to an expert. Enter your postcode in the box at the top right corner of this page and fill in your details to claim your free quotes. It only takes 30 seconds to arrange free quotes from local solar hot water experts!
What is a solar hot water system?
Solar hot water systems use solar collectors (either evacuated tubes or flat panels) which absorb energy from the sun to heat water for your home. The heated water is then stored in an insulated tank for when you need it. (see image to the right for reference on how solar hot water works)
How solar hot water works
Your Solar Quotes understands that you probably have a lot of questions about how solar hot water works – so we have outlined the basics for you below:
- When the sun is shining, water in the solar collector(s) located on your roof is heated through solar irradiation.
- This hot water then travels into the storage tank which may be on the roof in the case of traditional flat plate systems or on ground level in the case of evacuated tube solar hot water systems.
- The hot water in the tank rises naturally through the process of thermo-siphoning, where it is then made available to the house through a hot water fitting located at the top of the storage tank.
- The colder water at the base of the tank then travels into the solar collector where it is heated and the process repeats itself
- This continuous cycle is either gravity fed or run by a small pump and can reduce your water heating bills by up to 70%
Types of solar solar hot water systems available
There are three main types of solar hot water systems available. These are traditional roof mounted systems (typically with flat plate solar collectors), split solar hot water systems and solar heat pumps.
Roof mounted systems – Traditional roof mounted solar hot water systems typically use flat plate solar collectors and a roof mounted storage tank. These systems work off direct sunlight and should be positioned on the north facing aspect of your roof in order for you to gain the maximum benefit from your solar hot water system.
Split systems – Split solar hot water systems consist of a roof mounted solar collector (either flat panel or evacuated tube) and an insulated storage tank that is typically located near at the side of your home near the bathroom (or other areas where large volumes of solar hot water are used). Water is heated in the solar collector and once the water reaches a desired temperature, a sensor device activates a circulation pump that starts to pump the hot water into the storage tank on the ground.
Solar heat pump – Heat pumps work differently to traditional solar hot water systems in that they use heat energy from the surrounding air to heat water and they do not have a solar collector. Heat pumps can be extremely effective at slashing your water heating bills as they use about one third of the energy that a conventional electric hot water system uses! Solar heat pumps are extremely effective in hot climates and areas that experience an average temperature of 19 degrees celsius and higher throughout the year. Although heat pumps still work in cold weather, installation in cold climates will cause can lead to reduced unit life expectancy and greater energy consumption due to longer compressor run times. For this reason Your Solar Quotes do not recommend installing heat pump in areas with low average temperatures such as Hobart or Melbourne.
Which type of solar how water system should you choose?
Which are better – roof mounted or split systems? The energy benefits of traditional roof mounted systems and split systems are very similar (unless the split system has an evacuated tube solar collector in which case it is far more efficient/superior). Split systems have less heat loss than roof mounted systems due to the storage tank not being as exposed to the elements; however, there is a small amount of additional energy required to operate the low wattage pump on the split system. When choosing between the two, you need to take the structural design of your roof, ease of access for servicing and aesthetics/your personal taste into consideration.
Which are better – flat plate or evacuated tube collectors? Evacuated tube solar hot water collectors are vastly superior to traditional flat panel solar collectors as they can extract the heat out of the air on a humid day and they do not require direct sunlight to work. The total efficiency of evacuated tube solar collectors is higher due to the vacuum inside the glass tube and there is better performance in the early morning or in the late afternoon when the sun is not at the optimum angle for solar hot water heating.