Solar Hot Water

Submitted by furriephillips on Tue, 05/31/2016 - 18:42

Basic System Diagram

Solar Thermal System Diagram

An evacuated-tube, solar collector array is mounted on the roof and then connected to an additional heating coil, at the bottom of the hot-water tank and the system performs much like a low-powered boiler, heating my water. I say "low powered", but that's just not the case in full Summer sunshine.

It's installed on my NW-Facing Roof ... I know, I know! This will explain why I can't use my SE-facing roof...

The Renewable Heat Incentive scheme will require that the system is signed-off by an MCS approved installer, which was a problem for me, because the RHI had not really been properly born, when I installed my system...

System Components

I got all my equipment from H2 Solar Shop. I'm not a great fan of their website, but there are friendly and experienced human beings you can phone or email, who will advise you on system design and what parts you should order. I was very pleased with theis customer service, pre and post sale, hence the link here.

I had my plumber replace my vented hot water cylinder, with a larger capacity (250 litre) unvented unit with dual heating coils (one for the new boiler which he was replacing and one for the solar thermal system. So I had mains pressure hot water for a few months, while I saved up for the solar thermal system. It feels like gravity-fed (vented) systems are so last millenium.

The system consists of the following: -

  • 1x Twin-Coil Hot Water Cylinder
  • 1x 20 tube collector with off roof mounting kit
  • 1x 20 Tube collector only deal (no cylinder)
  • 2x Universal rhino roof entry
  • 1x FRP21 PVC cable
  • 1x Data logger DL2
  • 1x Sensor extension cable
  • 1x Automatic Air Vent
  • 1x Hand Pump