Renewable Energy Air Source Solar Solar Thermal
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Solar Thermal

Solar Thermal

Solar thermal systems work together with conventional water heaters by using the heat from the sun. This technology has been well developed offering a wide choice of products that will suit many uses and our solar panel installers will carry out installations to a very high quality.

We can supply and install a wide range of solar thermal systems for clients in Devon, Somerset and Dorset.

Hot Water Cylinder

There are three important parts for domestic hot water:

  • Solar collectors or panels - Attached to your roof and collect the heat from the sun's energy. There are two main types of collector available:
    • Flat plate systems - These consist of an absorber plate with a transparent cover which collects the heat from the sun.
    • Evacuated tube systems - Comprised of glass tubes in a row containing absorber plates which feed into a manifold to transport heated fluid.
  • A heat transfer system - Heats water using the heat collected.
  • Hot water cylinder - Hot water that is heated in the day is stored and then supplied for later use.
Solar Thermal

Solar Energy Benefits

Solar water heating can account for a good proportion of hot water needs and a considerable cost saving. A normal domestic system will save you about £60 per year off hot water bills and reduce the CO2 by about 325kg a year in homes heated by gas but will save a lot more in homes that use alternative fuel. Savings can be increased further with the addition of extra panels.

Fuel Displaced £ Saving Per Year CO2 Saving Per Year
Gas £60 325 kg
Electricity £90 635 kg
Oil £85 365 kg
Solid £65 645 kg

The savings above are approximate and based on the hot water requirements of a three bed house.

Is Solar Energy Suitable For My Home

Solar water heating can either be used in domestic properties or for larger areas including swimming pools. A domestic system will need about three to four square metres of southeast to southwest facing roof which receives direct sunlight for most of the day. Space will also be needed to install an extra water cylinder if it's required.

When choosing a suitable system for your needs then a range of factors will need to be considered which include your budget, the existing water system (some boilers aren't suitable) and the area of south facing roof. Our surveyors will assess your current situation and discuss with you what the best system is to meet your requirements.

Solar water heating can be also used together with a low temperature water heating system such as underfloor heating to help with the heating in a property. The amount of solar water heating that is contributed towards the heating needs of a home will depend on the number and size of solar panels and the demand of the heating system.

Solar Installation In England, changes were introduced on 6th April 2008 to the permitted development rights for micro generation technologies which lifted the planning permission requirements for most solar water heating installations. Stand-alone and roof mounted systems can now be fitted on to most buildings provided they respect certain size criteria. Exceptions still apply for world heritage sites, buildings in conservation ares and listed buildings.

Installation and Maintenance Costs

A typical cost for a home system installation will range from £3,000 to £5,000. Evacuated tube systems are much more advanced compared to flat plate systems so can be more expensive.

All of our solar water heating systems come with a 5-10 year warranty as standard and will require very little maintenance. Yearly checks by the householder and more thorough checks by professional installers will be sufficient.

We also offer a wide range of other renewable energy solutions which include solar PV, biomass, air source heat pumps and ground source heat pumps.