The most widely used solar water heating system consists of solar collectors, circulating pump unit, controller and solar cylinder. The solar panels are usually installed on top of a roof or integrated into the roof covering. They can also be wall mounted or free standing. Orientation should be between south-east and south-west. The ideal inclination to the horizontal is 25 – 45 degrees.
The solar cylinder can be situated anywhere inside the house. They range in size from 300 litres to 1000 litres. They are glass enamelled steel tanks fitted with magnesium anode and up to 100 mm insulation for excellent energy efficiency. Stainless steel and pre-heat cylinders are also available.
The solar collectors and the cylinder are connected via insulated copper pipes, through which the heat transfer medium (water & solar anti-freeze) is being pumped. Solar radiation is converted into heat by the absorber inside the panel and then transported to the heat exchanger at the bottom of the cylinder. The controller regulates the pump, ensuring that circulation only takes place when the temperature in the panel is higher than in the cylinder. Our solar systems are fitted with safety valve, membrane expansion vessel, air vents, thermometers & sensors, pressure gauge and fill & drain valve.
The size of the solar panel array and cylinder is determined by the expected hot water demand. A typical solar water heating system for a family of 4 or 5 would consist of 5 or 6 m2 of selectively coated flat plate collectors and a cylinder with 300 litres capacity. A solar contribution of up to 70% for the whole year would be achieved. The calculation for space heating assistance also takes the floor area and energy demand of the building into consideration.
With a 12 m2 panel array and a 750 litres solar combination cylinder (two tanks in one), up to 40% of central heating demand can be supplied by the solar system for a 120 m2 (1300 ft2) house.
Another highly cost effective application is the heating of swimming-pools. There is generally no requirement for a heat store, since the pool acts as a huge store. The main season for swimming-pools corresponds perfectly with the period of the highest solar radiation – from April to September.
Enquire about our extra efficient CPC tube collectors, if space is limited.