How Do Solar Hot Water Heaters Work?
With the rising cost of fuel and concern
over carbon footprints, many homeowners are turning to green technologies such as a
solar water heater. These
heating systems not only lower your fuel costs over the lifetime of the system but
will also help the environment by cutting back on harmful carbon emissions. Developing
a set of workable solar hot water heater plans could be your first important step
toward leading a “greener” lifestyle.
The U.S. Department of Energy provides a complete
breakdown of the basics of solar hot water heater systems. As they explain, there are
basically two types of solar hot water heaters: active systems, which contain
circulating pumps and controls, or the passive systems, which don’t. Both of these
plans will require
panel collectors and storage tanks for the water.
The solar storage tanks will need to be
well-insulated to lock in the heat and keep out the cold. You could opt for a two-tank
storage, where your system would preheat the water before it enters your conventional
water heater. Or you could decide on the single-tank storage option, which combines
the back-up heater with solar storage within the same tank.