Build Your Own Solar Water Heater
The amount of hot water that your family requires depends on the number of people, their bathing and washing habits, and the number of tubs and showers available for simultaneous use. Do not judge whether a water heater is adequate by the capacity of the tank alone. Equally as important is its recovery rate the volume of water that will have its temperature raised by 100 F in one hour. The capacity of residential water heaters typically varies between 30 and 82 gallons. The following example, although somewhat exaggerated, illustrates the point. Let us take an average home. Assuming normal water pressure and flow, the typical faucet delivers about 5 gallons of water per minute. Let us further assume that there is approximately a sixty-minute demand for hot water flowing at the rate of 2 gallons per minute. This hot water will usually be mixed with cold water for washing and bathing. If the home is equipped with an electric water heater that has a 60-gallon capacity and a 10-gallon...
In the mid-1970s, a new type of water heater, an indirect-fired storage water heater, was developed. The unit is called indirect-fired because the medium used for heating the domestic water is boiler water, which itself is heated in a separate boiler used for either central heating or space heating. The boiler water circulates through a heat exchanger that is located either within the heater tank or in an external compartment. Figure 16-10 shows one type of indirect-fired storage water heater. This unit has a specially designed heat-exchanger coil mounted in the base of the tank. Hot boiler water flows through the coil, which is surrounded by domestic water. The design of the heat exchanger, which consists of an inner core surrounded by an outer helical coil, is such that it results in a relatively high recovery rate. The typical capacity of this residential indirect-fired water heater is about 40 gallons. With water heaters, whether there is an adequate supply will depend not only on...
A water heater requires replacement only when the tank is leaking. If there are problems with any of the controls, they can be replaced individually as needed. You cannot tell by looking at a unit when it will start leaking. The projected life for an oil- or gas-fired water heater is from seven to ten years, although units have been known to last over fifteen years. Electrical units have a longer projected life than oil- and gas-fired heaters. This is because the electrical heating element is immersed in the water, imparting its heat directly to the water and not to the tank, whereas in an oil- or gas-fired heater the flame imparts its heat directly to the base of the tank. The intense heat results in expansion and contraction stresses that effectively shorten the life of the tank. Look at the temperature control knob (thermostat) on the tank. If it is at the maximum setting, the unit has been operating at a high temperature, and a shorter life span should be anticipated. The age of a...
Tank water heaters 219 Reversed connection 219 Relief valve 220 Rumbling noise 222 Exhaust stack 222 Operational inspection 223 Water heater replacement 224 Water heater capacity and recovery 225 Tankless coil water heaters 226 Inspection procedure 228 Indirect-fired storage water heater 228 Checkpoint summary 229 Hot water for bathing and washing (domestic hot water) is produced through a separate tank-type water heater, through the heating-system boiler (steam or hot water) by a tankless coil, or through an indirect-fired storage water heater. Domestic hot water is considered by manufacturers as cold water whose temperature has been raised 100 F. An important consideration in the design of water heaters is the ability of the unit to raise the temperature of 1 gallon of water 100 F. This criterion is used in evaluating the recovery rate for tank heaters and the water-flow rate for tankless coil heaters. These items will be discussed in the sections that follow. water heaters is...
If you heat with electricity and you have an unshaded, south-facing location (such as a roof) on your property, consider installing a solar water heater. More than 1.5 million homes and businesses in the United States have invested in solar water heating systems and over 94 of these customers consider the systems a good investment. Solar water heating systems are also good for the environment. Solar water heaters avoid the harmful greenhouse gas emissions associated with electricity production. During a 20 year period, one solar water heater can avoid over 50 tons of carbon dioxide emmissions. When shopping for a solar water heater, watch for systems certified by the Solar Rating and Certification Corporation (SRCC) or the Florida Solar Energy Center (FSEC).
The water heater should be inspected while the burner is operational. This can be achieved by opening the hot-water faucet at a nearby sink. Within a few minutes, depending on the size of the tank and the water flow at the sink, the burner should fire. (This assumes that the pilot is lit for a gas burner or that the electronic ignition is operational for an oil burner, and that there is oil in the storage tank .) If the burner fails to fire, there is a problem condition that should be checked. Oil and gas burners and their controls are discussed in detail in chapter 15. Whenever there is a heavy draw of water, if the temperature of the inlet water is low, condensation can form on the tank. If this should occur, you might see some water beneath the heater in a gas-fired unit, you may hear sizzling or pinging sounds caused by water droplets falling on the burner. Consequently, if you see a little water on the floor or hear the pinging noise of droplets, do not assume that the water...
SOLAR THERMAL ETube Solar Collectors from Lumos, Boulder, www.lumossolar.com AIR HANDLER HEAT-RECOVERY VENTILATOR Nu-Air Enerboss Hydronic Air Handler from Lorax Energy Conservation, Loveland, Colo., www.loraxec.com BACKUP ELECTRIC BOILER Thermolec, Montreal, Quebec, www.thermolec.com BACKUP WATER HEATER Marathon Water Heaters from Rheem, Eagan, Minn., www.marathon heaters.com
Wiring a Water Heater with Flexible Conduit Install a 30-amp, 240-volt circuit for most electric water heaters A water heater circuit is wired in much the same way as an air conditioner circuit (circuit map 12. page 160). Install a junction box near the water heater then use 10 2 NM cable to bring power from the service panel to the unction box ieft) Use flexible metal conduit and 10-gauge THHN,THWN wires to bring power from the unction box to the water heater wire connection box trighti Connect black and red water heater leads to the white and black circuit wires Connect the grounding ire to the water heater grounding screw
The only automotive ignition coil I had handy was an old 6 Volt Chevy coil. I used it and placed a ballast resistor in series between the coil and the emitter of the PNP transistor. It took 2.3Ws of resistance to keep the current through the coil in check. I made the 2.3W resistor using some nichrome wire from an old 120 vac electric hot water heater. If you have a 12
When domestic water is heated by a low power heat pump coupled to a 150 litre to 200 litre boiler, there may be hot water shortage for short periods during the year. To economically solve this problem, a flow-through water heater is a reasonable alternative. This heater should be arranged after the heat pump so that direct electric heating is only called for when the heat pump is unable to deliver the needed heating power. If the system is properly dimensioned, such occurrences should be rare. Accordingly, the absolute amount of electricity consumed for this purpose should be minimal over the year.
Is it loose If it is, it must be resecured. This can usually be done with a screwdriver. Sometimes the clamp or screws have corroded and must be replaced. If there is no clamp or ground wire visible, you should question the integrity of the ground system. Sometimes the ground wire is clamped to a water pipe other than the inlet pipe. This procedure provides a false sense of security because a section of the pipe can be removed, causing an open circuit in the electrical ground. Some states require a jumper wire between the hot- and cold-water pipes that are connected to the tank-type water heater. This provides electrical bonding between the two pipes and prevents an interrupt in the ground circuit during that period in which the water heater is being replaced. These states may also require a jumper wire around the water meter (if there is one). This requirement can be checked with the local authorities.
The systems and associated equipment included in this category are electrical, plumbing, domestic water heater, heating, air-conditioning, and swimming pool. The condition, operation, and adequacy of each system in your house must be checked as described in its respective chapter and recorded on the worksheet.
Many of the components and items in a house have the manufacturer's guarantee or warranty against defects for a specific number of years. Items that are usually covered are the furnace, water heater, roof shingles, well pump, air-conditioning compressor, and electrical appliances. If you are purchasing a relatively new house or in an older house any of the above components are relatively new (because of replacement), you should obtain the warranties or bills of sale. Many warranties are transferable to a new owner. Also, if the house has been termite-proofed, do not forget to get a copy of the guarantee if it is still in effect.
In the past, whenever people bought a home, their main concern was the physical house that is, the structural integrity of the building the condition of the mechanical equipment such as the heating system, plumbing, water heater the adequacy of the electrical system the condition of the roof whether the basement was dry and whether there was a termite condition. In recent years, another factor has entered into the decision process environmental problems. Some of these problems, such as a high radon concentration or deteriorating asbestos insulation, are potential health hazards. Others, like a leaky buried oil tank, can contaminate the soil and eventually the aquifer (water table). In all cases, it costs money to correct the problems. This cost should be added to the overall sale price of the house to determine the true cost of purchasing the house.
The first portion of the tankless water heater inspection is performed in the bathroom. Turn on the hot water at the sink and the tub simultaneously and look at the flow. If the flow appears to be low, mineral deposits might have built up in the tankless coil, and maintenance might be needed. On the other hand, the low flow might reflect a constriction in the distribution piping. Record the fact that there is a low flow on your worksheet as a reminder that the condition must be corrected regardless of the cause.
Inside the house, the cold water is distributed to the various fixtures located throughout the house. At the house inlet, there is a shutoff valve that the homeowner can use to close the water supply for the entire house. If there is a water meter in the system, it will usually be located inside the house near the inlet before any branch connections. Sometimes it is located near the curb valve. The cold-water pipe has a branch connection (usually near the inlet) that directs a portion of the water to a heater for generating the domestic hot water. The water heater can be a separate stand-alone unit or part of
Several national and some local companies offer plans that give you some insurance protection for the major systems of your home. Typically they cover plumbing (including water heater), heating, air conditioning, electrical, appliances, and so forth. The idea is that for a set period of time after you move in (usually one year), should there be a problem, the home protection company will cover it (minus a small deductible). The cost is usually nominal, a few hundred dollars for a year's worth of coverage.
After space heating and cooling, the largest user of home energy is usually the hot water heater. Fortunately this energy drain can easily be reduced with only moderate expense. Some people seem to think that solar hot water was a 70's fad, and faded with the times. Not true Solar hot water was very popular in the Los Angeles area in the early 1900's, and disappeared only when the hot water heater manufacturers gave people free gas and electric hot water heaters in exchange for their old-fashioned solar units, assuring a perpetual market for their supplies of then cheap gas and electricity. Well, it may have made sense back then, but one quick glance at our utility bill tells us that we've been had. A family of four often spends 50 per month or more to operate their electric hot water heater. Solar energy is presently making hot water for thousands of people all over the world, many in climates where sunshine is limited. Solar hot water does not have to be complicated or expensive. A...
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All water heaters must have a relief valve that is both temperature- and pressure-sensitive. A relief valve that responds to pressure only will not offer adequate protection for the homeowner. An excessively high pressure alone can cause the tank to rupture. Though this will cause water damage, it is not necessarily dangerous. However, if the tank should rupture as a result of a high-temperature failure, the superheated water contained therein will flash into steam, instantaneously releasing high energy in an explosion. A relief valve that is sensitive to both temperature and pressure can avoid this problem. The relief valve should have an extension that will allow it to discharge into a bucket on the floor. Sometimes, a relief valve is found without this extension. (See FIG. 16-2.) This is a potential hazard because a person standing near the water heater when the relief valve discharges could be scalded. I have also found an extension on the relief valve that leads to a sink or...
We have no electricity in the house (yet). We have kerosene lamps for light, including two Aladdin Mantle lamps. We have a gas stove and water heater and a kerosene refrigerator (Sibir). We heat with wood. The refrigerator averages about a gallon a week and we use about 10 a month in gas for the stove and water heater. We plan to put 12VDC lights in the house (powered by PV and batteries) in the Very near future. We use a gasoline engine generator for power tools.
(2) Overload water heating can contribute a saving of fuel in the AE home, although it has serious limitations. To understand this limitation, consider that a typical (rapid heating) AC electric water heater of 40 gallon capacity draws 9000 watts, while the average home AE system has only a few hundred watts to dump intermittently If you have a solar thermal water heating system, you will already have hot water by the time your PV system is ready to dump. If not, an ordinary electric water heater can be refitted with low voltage heating elements to supply more or less warm water for direct use or preheated water to save gas. Or a gas heater can be fitted with an electric element to save gas. A 150 watt (12 amps at 12.5 volts) heating element will heat one gallon of water from 55 to 125 degrees F. in 1.25 hours. This is a useful amount of heat. Excess energy is FREE we might as well use it
If the domestic hot water is produced in a tank-type water heater located in an unheated area, the tank should be covered with an insulation jacket. These jackets can be purchased in most building-supply or hardware stores. Although tank-type water heaters are normally insulated by the manufacturer, by installing an outer insulation jacket, you will further reduce heat loss and thereby minimize the energy needed to maintain the desired water temperature. The temperature of the hot water should not exceed 140 F. (See chapter 16.) Temperatures in excess of 140 F are not only wasteful of energy but will also shorten the life of the water heater.
Water heater Considering the many electrical appliances that are available to the homeowner, the minimum electrical service is 100 amps at 110 220 volts. However, if the house is small and the intention is not to use many electrical appliances, 60 amps at 110 220 volts will probably suffice. When a house is equipped with an electric water heater, electric range, electric clothes dryer, and a central air-conditioning system, it should have at least 150-amp service. If electric heat is used in addition to the above appliances, the house should have 200-amp service.
All oil- and gas-fired water heaters must have an exhaust stack to vent the products of combustion to the outside. If you find an exhaust stack that is loose or broken, so that the exhaust gases are discharging directly into the house (see FIG. 16-5), you should notify the homeowner of this potentially dangerous condition. As with a heating system, the exhaust Fig. 16-5. Disconnected exhaust stack. Exhaust gases from this gas-fired water heater discharge into the basement rather than a chimney a potentially dangerous condition. Fig. 16-5. Disconnected exhaust stack. Exhaust gases from this gas-fired water heater discharge into the basement rather than a chimney a potentially dangerous condition.
Over the years, sediment scale and mineral deposits tend to build up at the base of the tank. Manufacturers suggest that a few quarts of water be periodically drained from the water heater to help remove these deposits. However, this practice is not always effective, and if sufficient deposits accumulate, a rumbling or pounding sound can be heard when the unit is firing. If you hear a rumbling noise while inspecting the water heater, do not be
We live on 16 acres in Central Texas about 65 miles North of San Antonio. We have no electricity and a windmill pumps our water. We use oil lamps for light, propane heaters or wood for heat (also propane stove) and we have a Calentadora , a Mexican wood burning hot water heater (which is extremely efficient, 30 gallons heated in just 15 minutes with a handful of building scraps ). We use a gas generator for any power we need, power tools, or occasionally a blender or other kitchen appliance, etc. We hope to set up a DC system in our house (which we are now in the process of building) and to use our windmill for power also. We need info on this We live in a WINDY, SUNNY area and we can really envision generating ALL our own power. I, myself, am expecting our 3rd child and would Love a washer and a Real refrigerator. Our propane fridge is grossly inefficient, using almost 20.00 of propane per month in the summer and it doesn't get cold enough to make ice. Those are my only complaints,...
Last issue I discussed various definitions of heat and the ways it moves around us. Heat can be moved, stored, contained, or wasted without us realizing what is happening. A case in point is the propane fired water heater. I have one, and many are in use in aE households. Do you know the BTU rating of this most important appliance Do you know whether it actually delivers the amount of heat it is supposed to How many of those precious BTUs are being lost through your vent pipe and heater casing I want to tell you about a simple performance test you can run on your hot water heater to test its efficiency. You will need a thermometer that registers at least 150 F., an accurate watch, a vacuum and a good stiff wire brush. Turn the hot water heater control to the pilot position. Allow the water heater to cool, or drain the heater and let it refill with cold water. Now turn on any hot water faucet and record the temperature of the water. I started my test with a water temperature of 60 F....
The relief valve will have water dripping from it, and there will be a pool of water on the floor. A high-pressure condition that results in the relief valve discharging will usually be caused by a waterlogged or undersized expansion tank. If domestic hot water is generated through the heating system, another possible cause for a high-pressure condition is pinholes in the coils of the water heater. Regardless of the cause of the high pressure, the condition must be corrected. that there is no blockage at the pipe terminations, that the exhaust pipe is not combined with the exhaust from the water heater, and that the horizontal portions of the exhaust pipe slope back to the boiler. Also check that the condensate pipe discharges into a floor drain or condensate pump rather than a hole in the floor slab.
With a condensing furnace, the exhaust vent should not be combined with the exhaust from another appliance such as a water heater. The exhaust gases can be vented through a side wall, the roof, or a masonry chimney. However, if connected to a chimney, the plastic pipe should run up to the top of the chimney where the exhaust gas can vent to the atmosphere. If the exhaust pipe terminates at the base of the chimney, the corrosive condensate that forms will attack the masonry.
Require a rigid gas-supply pipe for stationary equipment such as a boiler, furnace, or domestic water heater. If the gas-supply pipe to the heating system is other than a black iron pipe, check with your local utility company for their requirements. Check the gas meter to see if it is adequately sized to supply gas to the heating system and domestic water heater during peak periods. An inadequately sized gas meter might be found in a house that originally had a gas-fired water heater and an oil-fired heating system. Sometimes when the oil-fired system is converted to or replaced by a gas-fired system, the installer does not notify the utility company to replace the meter, which was sized to supply gas for only the water heater and kitchen stove. A gas meter is rated in cubic feet per hour, and one cubic foot of natural gas is approximately equal to 1,000 Btu. Therefore, a meter rated at 250 cubic feet per hour can supply gas that is approximately equivalent to 250,000 Btu per hour....
Advantages and disadvantages 194 Distribution piping 194 Radiators 196 Panel heating 197 Controls 197 Steam heating systems 199 Distribution piping 199 Controls 200 Domestic water heater 202 Advantages and disadvantages 202 Hybrid heating systems 202 Steam-hot water 202 Hot water-warm air 203
In addition to copper, brass, and galvanized iron pipes, many communities also allow the use of plastic pipes for both hot- and cold-water distribution. Some communities, however, will allow plastic pipe only for use in cold-water lines. Trace and inspect all of the exposed water pipes in the basement. You will find that there will be a branch takeoff pipe that leads to the domestic water heater, and if the house is heated by steam or hot water, there will be a cold or hot takeoff leading to the boiler. As a point of interest, over the years, cold-water copper and brass pipes take on a darker color than the hot-water pipes. Sometimes you might find sections of cold piping sweating profusely. This is not a problem condition. It is merely condensation
There are four ways to cut your water heating bills use less hot water, turn down the thermostat on your water heater, insulate your water heater, and buy a new, more efficient water heater. A family of four, each showering for 5 minutes a day, uses 700 gallons of water a week this is enough for a 3-year supply of drinking water for one person. You can cut that amount in half simply by using low-flow showerheads and faucets. Insulate your gas or oil hot-water storage tank and pipes, but be careful not to cover the water heater's floor, top, thermostat, or burner compartment when in doubt, get professional help. Buy a new water heater with a thick, insulating shell while it may cost more initially than one without insulation, the energy savings will continue during the lifetime of the appliance. Although most water heaters last 10-15 years, it's best to start shopping for a new one if yours is more than Lower the thermostat on your water heater water heaters sometimes come from the...
Integrated space heating and domestic hot water heaters It is possible to meet your space heating and water heating requirements using one integrated unit that supplies all your needs. There are 'combo' systems that employ the water heater as the main source for heating the house. In some systems, the hot water from the tank circulates through a coil in an air handler, where it heats the air for a forced-air system. Other systems use the water heater to supply heat for a hydronic or radiant floor heating system. In order to deliver acceptable efficiency, these systems should use a mid- or high-efficiency water heater coupled to a well-matched heat exchange unit and distribution system. That means they should be considered as a replacement for your old heating system, rather than as an upgrade to an existing one. While these systems can be retrofitted to existing equipment, they will not operate efficiently if all the components are not properly matched.
When a seller finds that a qualified inspector has determined the roof needs repair or the water heater has outlived its expected life span, he may agree to make repairs or replacements or to knock down the price so that you can cover the cost of having the work done yourself.
We set the low voltage switch point at 13 Volts. When the system's voltage fell below 13 Volts, the resistance controlling the PVs incoming current switched out of series and the array resumed its normal production of 10+ Amperes. Also, when the system voltage fell below 13 Volts, then the auxiliary load was disconnected from the line. The auxiliary load can be virtually anything-- a fan, a pump, a water heater, or whatever. With the charge switch set on manual, the series regulator is defeated & the incoming power is fed directly to the batteries. Even if this series regulator is defeated, the shunt regulator will still function. The user can chose between 4 distinct modes of regulation 1) series & shunt, 2) no series & shunt, 3) series & no shunt, and the transparent mode of no series & no shunt. In addition to these four regulation modes, the switches also offer the OFF state to disconnect the power source and or the auxiliary load from the batteries.
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