Solar Hot Water Heaters for Homes
Water heaters are a home appliance that generally uses the most energy of any single source, other than a pool pump. There are a variety of things that affect how efficient a water heater is and they can get kind of complicated. In a gas water heater, gas fuel is burned that moves up through the exhaust throat of the water heater and moves that heat into the water. The tank is insulated and tries to keep the water warm, but it eventually loses some of the heat and the water heater will kick back on to keep the water and the desired temperature. The efficiency of these units is based on how much of that combustion heat is transferred to the water and how well the insulation works to keep that heat in the tank.
An electric water heater transfers all the electrical energy to the water, but electricity is more expensive to use as a heating energy than is natural gas, so electric water heaters are actually more efficiency, but they also cost more… kinda confusing.
Some incredible savings and efficiency increases are possible by using solar energy to preheat the water in a water heater tank. In these systems, water is heated in a panel that is generally on the roof of a home or business. That water is then circulated down in to the tank and if needed, small amounts of electricity are used to get the water up to the desired temperatures. In Phoenix especially, these systems can cut hundreds of dollars off an energy bill.
Solar installations for the typical household before rebates or other incentives, nationwide, average $6,000 for a solar water heater. After applying your solar rebates that cost is cut in half to $3,000 while your normal electric water heater from your local hardware retailer is $500. So think of this as a 5 year investment, after which you save a nationwide average of $600 every year. After the initial investment, solar energy becomes far more economical than other energy alternatives since the resource needed to
power the solar energy systems – sunshine – is free and unlimited.
So, a solar water heater isn’t always going to be a sure thing for you. However, depending on your situation it could create a major cost savings in the future. And while we don’t guarantee prices, our vendors generally pass on their solar water heaters with installation to our residents at a lower price than the national average. Meaning, more often than not it’s benefited our clients greatly to make the switch whenever they’re renovating or upgrading