Solar Hot Water Systems
Solar hot water is using the sun’s energy to heat the water, which will help you save energy, lower your hot water bills and reduce greenhouse pollution. With Solar you can save you up to 80% on your hot water energy costs.
Solar hot water systems can only be installed facing true north with an allowance of 45 degrees either side.
A typical solar hot water system is made up of solar collectors, a storage tank, a gas or electric booster and a solar controller and pump in the case of a split systems. The two types of systems available are:
The solar collector is the most important component within the system as it absorbs the energy from the Sun and heats the water. The solar collectors are roof mounted and must face north when installed in Australia. Avoid having the collectors shaded by adjacent buildings, structures and trees. There are two types of Solar Collectors:
A storage tank should hold a one day’s supply of hot water and have enough capacity to store the amount of solar energy collected by the solar collectors. Once the tank size is chosen to match your household hot water use, the number of solar collectors is matched to the tank. For help with selection please contact our free call number 1800 689 919 or you can simple fill in the quick quote form and we will be in touch within 1-2 hours (within business trading hours).
A booster is required to ensure you never run out of hot water in times of low solar contribution or times of excessive hot water consumption. The 2 booster options available are gas boosted or electric boosted hot water storage tank.
Solar Tempering Valves
A tempering valve mixes your hot and cold water to deliver hot tap water at a constant temperature. Tempering valves have a temperature sensitive element which adjusts the mix depending on the temperature of the incoming water flowing through the valve. The valve is designed to maintain a constant outlet temperature, reducing the risk of accidental scalding. The regulation in NSW is 50ºC for all bathrooms and 45ºC for childcare and elderly care facilities. Your tank temperature setting at the thermostat must be a minimum of 60c. This prevents bacteria and diseases growing. The average temperature of domestic hot water is 70 ºC. A much safer temperature for domestic hot water is 50 ºC. This is because water at a lower temperature takes longer to cause injury. For example:
- At 60 ºC, it takes one second for hot water to cause third-degree burns
- At 55 ºC, it takes 10 seconds for hot water to cause third-degree burns
- At 50 ºC, it takes five minutes for hot water to cause third-degree burns
For more information on the Tempering valve requirements please click here to see Fair Trading NSW fact sheet
What are STC’s
The Australian Government lists solar water heaters that are eligible for STCs and are therefore eligible to receive a rebate based on the number of STCs awarded. An STC is a calculation of how much energy is expected to be saved over ten years when using a solar water heater compared to the electricity consumption of an equivalent electric water heater. 1 x STC is 1 x MWh of electricity saved over 10 years = 100 kWh saved in a year. Performance calculations take into account geographic location, solar radiation, the angle of the sun, the efficiency of the solar collector, tank heat loss, cold water temperatures, the quantity of hot water used and hot water usage patterns. The more STCs awarded to a system equate to a higher rebate available on the purchase of that system.