With the rising costs of power bills and the emphasis on conserving the earth’s dwindling resources, more people are finding that building a solar power water heater is a realistic alternative and an excellent place to start to reduce and eventually eliminate their electric bill using clean, renewable energy. A DIY Solar Hot Water project can work out to be extremely cost-effective and, therefore, the return on investment can happen very quickly.
Solar thermal power is the most efficient way of harnessing the sun’s power. A photovoltaic system using commercial grade solar cells is about 16 to 18% efficient; for every 6 watts of sunlight that hit the panel, about one watt of electricity is generated. However, the use of a solar power water heater (or solar thermal transfer) is about 45% efficient, due to the way that thermodynamics works and this is a good reason to start your journey to solar home power by looking at building a solar power water heater as your first project.
In essence, sunlight hits a dark colored tube with water in it; the water heats up for the same reason your car heats up in the parking lot in the summer. That water is then circulated to a storage tank, where it fills your solar power water heater, or is piped throughout your home to provide warmth.
What most people don’t realize is that getting hot water is usually the single most expensive part of their utility bill. Water has a high degree of thermal latency which means that it’s a great way to store thermal energy, and because it’s liquid, move it to different parts of the house. However, this also means it’s expensive to heat up in the first place, whether by electricity, natural gas, or propane. Which is why heating water accounts for just over 30% of the average household’s power bill. And why starting your journey to energy-freedom with a DIY solar hot water project makes excellent sense. Tackling just this one area of your energy needs by building your own solar power water heater will significantly reduce your electric bill and your carbon footprint!
There are a variety of methods to choose from when deciding on a DIY solar hot water system, depending upon your own circumstances, such as your particular usage, application, situation and budget. One innovative solution for a solar power water heater is to make a ‘garden wall’ that faces south, and put an underground cistern for collecting the water that’s heated by it. Usually, garden wall solar thermal systems feed into the kitchen sink or the dishwasher, which are big users of hot water. They have a bracket of pipes running through a clay wall that’s painted black; the water is heated and circulates (via normal expansion) into the cistern, which draws cooler water from the storage tank next to it. This won’t give you boiling water, but even on a cool, fall day they can give you water that’s about 100 degrees – a little cooler than a cup of coffee, but more than hot enough to wash dishes in.
Another DIY solar hot water system can bring the ‘garden wall’ concept to the house; the southern wall of the house becomes the ‘garden wall’, and the water is either routed to the main hot water storage heater, or routed through plastic tubing underneath the floor, to give radiant heat in the family room.
Whatever method of building a solar power water heater you choose to use, you need to take into account what is most practical for your home, given your own particular circumstances. But it is definitely worth considering a DIY solar hot water solution – it’s easier and cheaper than you may think and can provide an extremely cost-effective way of reducing your power bill. By building your own solar power water heater, you will cut costs significantly and will find that you can recoup your costs very quickly with the savings that you make on your power bill. Then you’re into pure profit for ever, which is a wonderful feeling. Here’s to hoping that the sun’s warmth runs your showers in the near future!
YEAH! IM NOT DEAD!! JUST THAT SCHOOL CHORES GOT ME SO DAMN HARD
I HAD TOO MUCH HOMEWORK THE LAST DAYS
ALSO WITH THE EARTHQUAKE HERE IN MEXICO I WAS SO SCARED AND WAITING THAT A EARTHQUAKE SHAKE MY STATE AGAIN
SO YEAHHHH I WAS WORKING ON THIS LIKE 1 WEEK AGO
I REALLY LOVED HOW THIS CAME OUT!
ORIGINAL: https://youtu.be/dH8L2gAc-6M by darki draw