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Monday, June 28, 2010

Un-happy with my Solar Hot Water Service - Peter, Morphett vale

Approximately 12 months ago we had installed a 300ltr Chromogen Solar water heater on the roof and whilst the hot weather was here ample hot water.We now find during the winter,even on sunny days,there is insufficient hot water at the end of the day for one person to shower even if we use only one third of the tanks capacity.

Is this normal and if so,can the temperature be boosted at anytime during the day.

We are particularly disappointed with the system.

Solar units rely on the boost element during the winter months as there is not enough heat generated from the sun. A rough guide to determine the solar gain on a two panel solar system is double the day time ambient temperature. e.g. An 20 degree day time temperature will on average generate a full tank of 40 degree C the boost element will then heat the water overnight up to the temperature set on the thermostat approx 65-70 degrees C, due to the placement of the element on solar units you would only ever heat half a tank. For this reason the tank manufacturers always recommend installing a larger capacity tank. I believe the most cost effective method to repair would be to contact your electrician to see if they could provide you a day/ night switch or boost button. In times of heavy demand you could put the element onto a day rate. It is important however to remember to put the switch back to night rate to avoid paying the higher rates a boost button would revert back to the cheaper night rates once your thermostat is up to temperature.

- Ken

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