What is Solar Thermal? Using the suns energy to heat water or propylene glycol and run the transfer fluid through a heat exchanger to transfer the energy to either one’s domestic hot water or to their hydronic heating systems fluid to heat the house.
Propylene glycol is a food based antifreeze that is non-toxic and is used in pressurized systems where the fluid will need to be in the system at all times, in essence it is for freeze protection.
We do use and design “drain back “ solar systems, where the fluid travels through the collectors and when the system has reached its goal temperature it will shut down and the fluid will drain back into a tank into a conditioned space. In these systems, propylene glycol is not necessary; however it can be used for extra safety measures.
The national average for hot water usage is about 20 gallons per person per household; this includes showers, dishes, laundry, and other miscellaneous uses. In some households this can be a lot of hot water needed to get through a day. We as a people use a lot of fossil fuel energy to heat our water for everyday uses. When in this climate the sun can be used almost every day to heat our domestic hot water. Also included in the system is a “backup” for the few times that we have 3-4 cloudy days. There can be an electric element or through another heat exchanger one’s boiler can be used to heat the tank for domestic uses.
Solar thermal heating is using the sun to heat a much larger amount of fluid that can be used to heat one’s home either through radiant floors and or radiators. Storage can either be in large storage tanks or in one’s concrete slab. These systems will also have “backup” from the boiler which will pick up the load if there are a few cloudy days in a row.
WHO WE WORK WITH:
We install systems from Wagner Solar, Solar Skies solar, and control systems from Solar Logic LLC. We are not limited to these suppliers; we have installed solar components from a number of other manufacturers. These companies have teams of engineers and technical support technicians that we are familiar with and trust who have years of practical knowledge and experience.
Right now there are tax credits offered from the government for the installation of solar thermal systems. 30% federal and 10% state tax credits are offered, meaning that 40% of the total cost of the system including the installation is returned through a tax credit. There are calculations available to you provided by Solar Logic LLC that can calculate one’s Hot Water Needs and how much we can offset your payments to the gas company/electric company. These numbers can give a realistic idea of when someone could have positive cash flow and what they may save over the lifetime of the system not including any repairs or unforeseeable problems that may occur to the system.