Solar Home Heating Systems
Solar heating systems are designed to convert energy from sunlight into energy that heats your home. You can utilize either solar water heaters, solar air heaters, or both.
The primary benefit of using a solar heater is the low cost — it won’t cost you much to run. Whether you planning to heat your water or air, thanks to a solar heating system, you will no longer need to spend money on fossil fuels. At most, you will pay to run a pump or fan for the system. However, this cost is very affordable compared to running a traditional gas furnace.
In addition to its affordability, these solar heaters release hardly any pollution. The only potential pollution related to solar heaters is when the heating system materials are built at factories, most of which rely on fossil fuels such as coal or natural gas to do the job.
Solar heating systems are also relatively low maintenance. For most solar heaters, at most you can expect to change out liquids, or replace some hoses, pipes, and seals once every 3-5 years.
3 Types of Solar Heating Systems
There are a few different types of solar heaters for the home. Each is widely used around the world and designed for a specific application. The 3 main types of heaters are:
1. Solar Water Heaters
Solar Water Heaters
Solar water heaters provide affordable hot water for your home by using solar energy
Provides monthly utility savings
Increases home value
Lasts 20+ years
A solar water heater, also known as solar hot water systems, is generally used for showering, bathing, and washing laundry. It relies on solar collectors to convert sunlight into heat, which is transferred to the water in your home. As the sun beats down on the collectors—or insulated containers with dark colored absorbers—they heat up, warming the water that passes through them. Then, this water flows to a storage tank to await usage.
Solar water heaters are very affordable to run since they rely almost entirely on sunlight, and require minimal maintenance.
2. Solar Pool Heaters
Solar Pool Heaters
Solar pool heaters are installed directly to your pool's filtration system to create hot water
Long-term savings for pool utilities
Low operational costs
Lasts 20+ years
A solar pool heater works similarly to a home water heater. The main difference is that it is installed directly to the pool’s existing filter piping.
As water is pumped through the filter, it is then pushed up through an array of solar collectors. Then, it slowly flows back down into the pool again. The water is both filtered and heated, and the pool is warmed over time.
Since the system makes use of the filter, the pump, and the existing lines already and only adds to the pool filter system, it’s quite affordable and can be added easily.
3. Solar Air Heaters
Solar Air Heaters
Solar air heaters are used to efficiently heat a single area or room of your home
Reduced energy bills
For someone looking to heat a single room, or a smaller space such as a garage, a solar air heater is a reliable choice. A solar air heater is essentially an insulated box with a glass front and a dark-colored absorber within. As sunlight shines on the box, it heats up inside, and an air line going to the box pumps cooler air from the room into the box for heating. That hot air flows back into room, raising the temperature to a comfortable level.
A solar air heater is a simple system that offers a stable supply of heat using direct sunlight. While air will naturally flow through the lines on its own without a fan or pump, an exhaust fan is typically employed to speed up air flow even more.
Working with a Solar Heater Professional
Since most solar heating systems are difficult to install, and require expertise for proper functioning, it is advisable to work with a professional solar heater installer. Not only will a professional save you time during the process, but they will also ensure a flawless installation. Additionally, they can ensure your solar heating system is large enough to achieve your intended goal.