In This Article
- Types of Solar Heating Systems
- Passive Solar Heating System
- Active Solar Heating System
- How Much Does Solar Heating Cost?
- Solar Heating Cost Breakdown
- Cheapest Solar Heating System Installed
- Solar Heating FAQ
- Why Are You Guys So Concerned About Alternative Energy Options
- Where should I put my solar panels?
- Can Solar Panels Run Even If There Is No Sunlight?
- What can I do if there are no sun rays coming into my home?
The winter months can be a challenge for anyone looking to stay warm, however, those with a heightened environmental conscience now have the opportunity to not only keep their home warm but also reduce their energy bills. Solar heating systems harness and transfer the sun’s heat directly into your house using solar panels, and it is surprisingly easy to install.
But before getting started on installing your solar heating system learn about what exactly you need to know. We hope that this post helps you make an informed decision about whether or not solar heating is right for you!
Types of Solar Heating Systems
There are two general types of solar heating systems in the market today, active and passive. An active system is one that requires a pump to transfer the heat from the solar panels into your home while a passive system requires no such pump but can be more expensive to install. We will now provide a brief overview of each so that you can decide which is right for you.
Passive Solar Heating System
A passive solar heating system absorbs sunlight within its collector tubes, uses natural convection and radiation to transfer the heat throughout your home, and if it can’t generate enough heat during a given day it stores it until the morning when solar rays are once again available. This type of system is often installed on the south side of a house to maximize heat transfer.
Active Solar Heating System
An active solar heating system, as the name suggests, uses a pump to transfer the heat from the solar panels into your home. This makes it possible for you to run your central heating even when there is no sunlight available. It can even double as an additional heat source if you have a gas furnace or electric water heater as well.
How Much Does Solar Heating Cost?
Depending on which type of solar heating system you decide to go with, installation costs will vary and some types are significantly more expensive than others. The cost will also depend on where you live and the area where you want to install your system. Some of the factors that will influence the cost are:
Area – more expensive systems are typically found in warmer areas because it takes more thermal energy to heat them up.
– more expensive systems are typically found in warmer areas because it takes more thermal energy to heat them up. Size of your house – larger houses may need a larger sizing panel which results in a higher price tag.
– larger houses may need a larger sizing panel which results in a higher price tag. Your roof type – flat roofs tend to be more difficult to install, so if you live in a hilly area, this will increase the cost.
– flat roofs tend to be more difficult to install, so if you live in a hilly area, this will increase the cost. Your garage type – it is possible that your garage has poor insulation which will alter the cost of installing heat.
– it is possible that your garage has poor insulation which will alter the cost of installing heat. What type of attic is in your house – some types cannot be installed on attics and may need to be installed on a crawl space or under-roof. This will result in additional costs when installing your roofing system.
Solar Heating Cost Breakdown
While solar heating costs vary according to the factor above, it is possible to predict a ballpark figure for the overall cost of a solar heating system. Here is a brief breakdown:
Size of your house – As stated previously, larger houses will likely need more panels than smaller houses. A single 6-watt panel will provide enough energy for most 1-1/2 story homes, but larger ones will require more panels. You don’t need to have an array that is gigantic or risk overheating your home.
– As stated previously, larger houses will likely need more panels than smaller houses. A single 6-watt panel will provide enough energy for most 1-1/2 story homes, but larger ones will require more panels. You don’t need to have an array that is gigantic or risk overheating your home. Type of roofing – the type of roofing you have will dictate how many panels you need. Flat roofs are ideal and allow you to use the roof itself without having to cut into it and add a mounting platform.
– the type of roofing you have will dictate how many panels you need.
Cheapest Solar Heating System Installed
Get more than one estimate and request references from other customers who have used their services. This helps ensure that you are hiring someone qualified and professional.
Choose a company that specializes in solar heating systems and not just a general contractor or roofing company. If you are a go-getter, you can definitely learn how to install and build your own solar heating system.
Ask about financing options so you can get the system installed as soon as possible. This will pay for itself in less than a year!
Consider getting an energy efficient air conditioning unit instead of a traditional one. A unit like this could save you up to $360 each year on your energy bill.
These are just a few ideas on how you can get a solar heating system at a reasonable price. The important thing is that you take the first step and install one immediately before you find yourself stuck in the past with an obsolete heating system.
Solar Heating FAQ
Why Are You Guys So Concerned About Alternative Energy Options
The reason we are so concerned about alternative energy options is because they are sustainable and not based on fossil fuels that will run out at some point in the future. As a society, we should use all options that will benefit us as a nation and this includes solar heating systems. The benefits include:
No upkeep. No monthly bills to keep up with. No filling up the plant with gasoline or propane. Solar heating systems are very maintenance free and therefore provide you with greater comfort at a much lower cost than any other type of modern heating system available today.
Affordable. Solar systems cost around 3-6% of what a gas furnace or central heating/cooling system would cost. This may seem like a small amount, but for people living on a budget, it is often the difference between paying rent, buying food and paying your bills on time. The savings are truly impressive when you look at the lifespan of these systems. Solar heating systems last upwards of 20 years so there are no worries about them breaking down in the middle of the night and having to call an expensive repair service in the middle of winter. You simply have to maintain them as part of your normal home maintenance schedule and enjoy the lower utility bills without having to worry about them running out unexpectedly.
Eco-Friendly. Using solar heating systems and other green technologies reduces your carbon footprint substantially. This is important for everyone living in a developed country because pollution and the use of fossil fuels are two of the main reasons why we are losing the battle against global warming. If we don’t find alternative energy sources to use, our planet will become uninhabitable in less than 200 years. We need to take action now before it is too late.
Where should I put my solar panels?
maximum efficiency. You also want to consider the orientation of your roof when you are deciding where and how to install your solar heating system. You can get benefits from any part of the day, but if possible, try to maximize the amount of energy that will be collected at these times if you are interested in making use of your panels during peak sun hours. Can you operate a solar heating system on a shaded roof?
Can Solar Panels Run Even If There Is No Sunlight?
Yes. Solar systems are designed to operate on partial shade and no shade. They will draw in any available sunlight and convert it into usable heat for your home. This is in stark contrast to other forms of heating that can only be used if there is direct sun shining down on them, such as a coal boiler.
These types of boilers need direct sunlight to heat up to the proper temperature needed. By using a solar heating system, you can keep your home warm no matter how much shade it gets from other houses or structures around it because they don’t have this requirement.
What can I do if there are no sun rays coming into my home?
If your home doesn’t get enough sunlight, you may find that the temperature in your house dips far too much with the temperature outside. This is due to the fact that those systems will not function without sunlight.
Most home owners will have to put their solar panels in an attic or on a north-facing roof to get a good amount of sunshine throughout the year. However, this isn’t always possible and if it is not possible, you may have to consider other options such as heating with propane or even using electric heaters.
Solar heating is one of the best ways to cut energy costs and to do your part to protect the environment. It is easy, affordable and a very efficient way of keeping your home warm without adding any additional energy or pollution to the environment. Instead of using fossil fuels, you can make the switch over to solar heating and lessen your carbon footprint at the same time.
If you are considering this option, talk to a contractor about installing a solar heating system for your home. You can even get a grant to help pay for it if you qualify. Make sure that you do your research and learn about these systems before making any decisions so that you are getting exactly what you need for your home.
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