15 Aug Using PV Solar to Generate Hot Water for Your Bathroom
Wow energy bills are increasing at an eye watering rate!
As we all try to cut our dependency on fossil fuels and do our bit for the environment we wanted to look at how you can use solar energy to generate hot water for your bathroom. Whilst we don’t get involved with installing solar systems ourselves we do sometimes work alongside solar installers.
It is important to note that there are 2 types of solar panels.
- Solar panels that produce hot water are known as solar thermal collectors or solar hot water collectors. These are tube like panels that directly heat hot water
- Solar panels that produce electricity are known as solar photovoltaic (PV) modules. These panels generate DC electricity when exposed to light. The electricity generated from these can then be used to heat hot water.
The benefits of installing PV panels are that you are generating electricity which you can then choose to use as you wish in your home, or if you have excess you can sell back to the grid.
Whereas thermal collectors will only heat hot water, and therefore aren’t as flexible.
PV panels can be installed on your roof and angled towards the south for maximum solar exposure. Increasingly solar PV installations are set up as follows:
- First power all of the current needs of the house.
- Then if excess is being generated that the house doesn’t need then divert to heat the hot water cylinder.
- Once the hot water cylinder reaches maximum temperature then divert the remaining power generated back to the grid.
Some installations have battery storage also so have an extra step of storing electricity in the battery before diverting to the grid.
With this set up, in the summer months at least, you should find that a good chunk of your needs for electricity and energy for heating water are significantly reduced.
Even better is that this year the energy companies are now offering to pay you for the electricity you send back to the grid, albeit at a lower rate than you typically buy from them.
For example you can learn more here about Electric Irelands Microgeneration scheme
So perhaps now is the time to think about Using PV Solar to Generate Hot Water for Your Bathroom?