Solar hot water.


I am doing a house renovation.
With central heating not yet started it seems a good time to consider the viability of solar panels for hot water.
I've been on the internet and located suppliers of such panels. They rant on about saving the planet etc. Show complex graphs to supposedly impress me with.
However I'm more interested in hard facts, which are not given.
For example. Supplied and installed price. How much hot water can I expect on a typical June day.
I need hard facts so I can decide if it is cost effective for me.
Can anyone shed any sunlight on this?
Thanks
mark
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
http://www.navitron.org.uk/ is the web site Dick "big tash" Strawbridge used for all the places he added solar water to in the BBC series Its not easy being green - they have a forum and a ton of other general info
HTH
BuGgY
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

Looks an interesting site. I shall study it. Thank you.
mark
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
Mark wrote:

your question, I probably get 95% of my water from solar at the moment.
It is not a case of turning off the boiler as you may need lots of hot water before the sun is shining, but my boiler is really only needed on the rainy days now (or the morning after a very cloudy day).
After a good sunny day, I have 170 litres of water at 60c by 6pm. This is cooled/regulated by injecting cold water in a mixing valve to approx 50c. I get 40c out from the panel on an overcast day at the moment giving my boiler less to do.
I totally agree with previous comments about making this an idealogical decision as much as a financial one. I will get my money back in a few years and there is little maintenance to cost in. Because people use varying amounts of hot water and at different times of day, it is impossible to say you exactly how much you will save.
There are various types of panels to choose from. I chose the expensive schott panels as they work more efficiently than the slightly better looking lens type. If you are looking to install yourself, consider that the lens type panels (Imagination solar?) take longer to install as the panel fits on the rafters. The benefit is the ease of installation in the loft etc using 8mm microbore tubing. The Schott panels fit on top of the roof tiles and are secured by 4 stainless steel straps. This is much easier to install, but uses 15mm tubing, thus taking longer in the loft/airing cupboard. You will probably need to replace your water cylinder to a twin coil type. These will cost in the region of 400. I changed my cylinder when my boiler was replaced last year. This saved a lot of hassle when I installed solar. Have you got a south facing roof? I do, but if not, it is also possible to install one panel on the east facing and one on the west facing side.
Your panels may need planning permission if you are in a conservation area or have a listed building. I am in a conservation area. The local planners were interested in the thickness and location of the panels. My 2 panels are on the back of my house and are only 100mm thick. They were happy with this. Some glass tube panels are considerable thicker and uglier. Hope this is helpful. You could find out more from my installer at http://www.ourbrightfutures.co.uk
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

HomeOwnersHub.com is a website for homeowners and building and maintenance pros. It is not affiliated with any of the manufacturers or service providers discussed here. All logos and trade names are the property of their respective owners.