The solar collectors are placed on rooftops to absorb thermal energy during sunny weather. The absorbed heat is transferred to a special pump and stored in large storage solar water heater. From the storage tank, heat is transferred to other rooms through the central heating system. This is the simplest description of the principles on which the solar home system works. However, read more detail in the following text, what are solar systems for home heating and how they work.
The solar system is the perfect solution for floor home heating. Significant influence on energy savings represents a good home insulation – insulation of walls, roof and attic. Standard economical solar home system make: solid fuel boiler (can also be used electric or gas boiler), accumulation solar boiler, solar collectors and control station.
Today, approximately 1/3 of the total energy is spent on heating buildings and water heating. The tendency in the whole world is to get more energy from alternative renewable energy sources such as the sun. About 30% of the sun’s energy is lost through the layer of the atmosphere due to the diffuse radiation, so the maximum value of solar radiation that reaches the earth’s surface is 1000 W. From these values, depending on the type of collector and size of a solar home system, we can use up to 75% energy. To make the system more functional it is necessary that it be optimally dimensioned. For one household optimum number of solar collectors is 2-3. It’s also necessary: one boiler (of 422.58 – 633.88 pints), solar pump groups, expansion vessel, the corresponding Cu pipes and so on.
Except for domestic hot water, solar collectors can be used for the purpose of:
- The heating support, especially in case of low temperatures
- Heating of swimming pool
- Room air conditioning (absorption cooling)
Solar home system required for one average household
For an average household (4-5 members) we need approximately 4.78 yd² of solar collectors for domestic hot water. Estimated total annual energy savings per household is about 1,380 kWh. Solar home system covers over 60 % of annual household needs for hot water, while the lifetime of the system is about 20 years. In the case when the household uses solar energy for space heating, average annual savings of thermal energy are about 3,600 kWh, which represents a potential annual carbon dioxide emission reduction of approximately 2,500 lbs.
To calculate the cost of a home solar system, we need to take into account all technical components (solar collectors, the piping, insulation, regulation, special pump, expansive vessels, solar fluid, and other necessary materials) and the cost of works required for installation. With the savings achieved over 30 percent of the energy needed for heating, the investment can pay off for five to seven years.
Solar home systems used to support central heating, can cover from 30% to 40% of energy needs for home heating during the winter. In addition to these savings, during the year, this system can cover 80% of the demand for hot water. The combined solar system also provides water heating in the interim and summer period for bathing, kitchen and washing machine.