Solar Water Heaters in Seattle
The Most Energy-Efficient Hot Water Equipment
Domestic Hot Water (DHW) systems use the sun’s energy to heat water directly, which is more efficient than creating electricity and then using that electricity to heat hot water. Current technology allows us to capture about 70% of the sun’s energy and use it to heat water where photovoltaic systems typically capture about 15-20% of the sun’s energy.
These extremely efficient systems are typically designed by Smart Solar Solution to heat 50-75% of your annual domestic hot water needs. For example, you may get 160-degree water in the summer—more than you can even use—whereas a cloudy winter day may only provide you with 60- to 90-degree water. This is great as compared to the approximate 48-degree ground temperature water typically found in Northwest.
Solar Equipment That Best Fits Our Climate
Due to the cool nature of our area, Northwest Mechanical, Inc. typically installs Apricus evacuated tube solar hot water systems. These slightly outperform flat plate collectors when there are clouds in the sky, or the temperatures are cold, thus making them ideal for our climate. We also install flat plate collectors for a large array of commercial and pool heating applications. You also get rebates for your solar water heater in Seattle. Currently, one of the incentives for solar hot water systems is 30% federal energy tax credit based on the installed system cost.
How Do Solar Hot Water Systems Work?
In evacuated tube systems, the sun hits the evacuated glass tube which traps the heat. Inside of this glass tube is a ¼-inch copper pipe with a little less than an ounce of water in it. This little bit of water boils and turns to steam that carries the heat to a manifold that runs through the top of the collector. The manifold is typically filled with part glycol to avoid any chance of freezing, or the system is designed to completely drain during freezing weather.
This solar-heated fluid is then pumped down into a separate solar water tank where a heat exchanger transfers the heat into the domestic water supply. Your current water tank or on-demand water heater will then draw on this tank for water. If it’s too hot, it will add cold tap water to get it down to the temperature you want coming out of your faucets. If it isn’t hot enough, your existing tank will turn on and give it a boost.
For more information about our solar water heaters in Seattle, please call (206) 900-9231. A member of our team would gladly explain all your options.
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