A solar energy water heater is a great way to save money.
I mean, everyone these days is looking for ways to cut back on their power bills, right?
Well, you may have just found your answer.
A solar water heater is a great way to supplement your current electric or gas.
It saves money in the long run and really is a great way to be kind to the environment.
Not to mention the psychological benefits of being a little more independent.
Let’s dig in to how a solar water heater works.
Solar Energy Water Heater Collector
When heating water using solar energy, a solar collector (not the same as solar cells or PV Panels), connected to a roof or a wall facing the sun, heats working fluid that is either pumped (active system) or driven by natural convection (passive system) through it.
The collector might be made of a glass insulated box with a flat solar absorber made of sheet metal, attached to copper pipes, or a set of metal tubes surrounded by an empty glass cylinder.
In a "close-coupled" solar water heater, the storage tank is horizontally mounted above the solar collectors on the roof.
No pumping is required because the hot water rises into the tank through thermo siphon flow.
In a "pump-circulated" solar energy water heater, the storage tank is mounted on the floor or ground, and is below the solar collectors.
A circulating pump moves water between the tank and the collectors.
Picture A is of a Passive System and Picture B is of a Active System
Solar Water Cost
The initial cost of buying and installing a solar energy water heater is different in each country, and is the most expensive step in owning one.
But once that initial cost is paid, a solar water heater will save you money in the long run. Eventually paying for itself overtime.
Exactly How much money you save depends on the following:
When you install a solar energy water heater, your heating bills should drop 50%–80%.
Also, because the sun is free, you're protected from future fuel shortages and price hikes.
If you're building a new home or refinancing, the savings can really add up.
The price of a solar water heater in a new 30-year mortgage amounts to between $13 and $20 per month.
The federal income tax deduction for mortgages that use solar power lowers that by about $3–$5 per month.
In other words, if your fuel savings are more than $15 per month, the solar investment is saving you money overnight.
On a monthly basis you will be saving more than you are paying.
Cost By Country
In warm locations, where freeze protection is not necessary, a solar energy water heater can be very cost effective.
In higher latitudes, there are additional design requirements for cold weather, which add to system cost.
This has the effect of increasing the initial cost (but not the long term) of a solar water heating system.
The most costly part to consider is the initial installation cost of solar water heating systems.
Offsetting this expense can take a few years.
Just remember that once the system is installed, it will eventually pay for itself.
The sun is free, don’t forget that!
And, using gas and electricity alone, can really add up over time.
The calculation of the long term cost and payback period for a solar hot water system depends on a number of things:
If you are ready to help the environment, cut back on the long term costs of electricity and gas, and increase your overall independence from power company monopolies, then a solar energy water heater is for you!