Explained Solar Water Heater: Benefits, Savings & Payback Time

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The solar water heater uses the energy of Sun to heat the water. Thus it does not use any conventional and popular source of energy. The Sun’s energy being free, the energy generated is also free of cost except for interest on capital cost and its repairs and maintenance cost.

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The solar water heater uses the energy of Sun to heat the water. Thus it does not use any conventional and popular source of energy. The Sun’s energy being free, the energy generated is also free of cost except for interest on capital cost and its repairs and maintenance cost.

Why should I install a solar water heater?

Solar water heaters save both electricity and money. As electricity is becoming more expensive, a solar water heater is a great way to access 24/7 hot water at far cheaper rates. They are also safer than gas geysers/electric geysers as they are located on the roof. Further by saving energy, it ultimately reduces carbon footprint and saves natural resources and conserve the environment.

Solar water heaters operate with a fixed cost following installation. Free solar energy exempts you from fuel shortages or price hikes.

Saving in India:

A 100 litre per day capacity system suitable for 3-4 people can save up to 1500 units of electricity in a year i.e. the saving of around Rs. 7500/- to 12000/- per year in energy bill (considering the prevailing cost of power in different Indian states), depending on hot water used. It can also save around 140 litres of diesel in an establishment using oil fired boiler beside reducing greenhouse gas emissions in the atmosphere. Higher

capacity systems will save the higher amount of electricity/fuel oil besides reducing the higher amount of greenhouse gas emissions.

Electricity is expensive and is not available due to power cuts in many areas when required for heating water. Solar Water Heater, since it stores hot water in an insulated tank, provides water all the time when required. Fuel oil is also expensive and creates pollution. Storing the fuel oil for long term use in commercial establishments is another problem.

Also Read: Solar Water Heaters All the Basic Things You Need to know!

The table below gives approximate likely electricity and money savings for a typical 100 litres per day system located in different parts of India.

Northern Region Eastern Region Southern Region* Western Region*
Expected no. of days of use of hot water per year 200 days 200 days 300 days 250 days
Expected yearly electrically saving on full use of solar hot water (units of electricity) 1000 1000 1500 1250
Monetary savings at different prices of electricity, Rs. / year
Rs. 4/kwh 4000 4000 6000 5000
Rs. 5/kwh 5000 5000 7500 6250
Rs. 6/kwh 6000 6000 9000 7500
Rs. 7/kwh 7000 7000 10500 8700

These are very general and will vary depending upon local climate.

Saving in the US:

It will depend on in which state you are living. But say if you are in Florida, then due to the ample availability of the sunshine in Florida, solar savings can be as high as 85% of your energy use, for heating domestic water. These results vary and depend entirely on the specific circumstances of your hot water consumption. For a customised solution please contact the manufacturer who will guide you based on your unique consumption/location.

For a family of three, the typical hot water usage is 70-gallons per day, so using 4990-kilowatt-hours per year to heat the water electrically, or $724 per year worth of electricity at 0.145 per kilowatt hour with all charges included is your saving.

Pay Back: Recovery of Investment

In general, payback times tend to be shorter for gas i.e. propane and electricity based hot water systems and longer if you are currently relying on natural gas. Due to the magnitude of these factors of influence, it is impossible to offer one precise figure here. However, from our experience, we may say that the payback times vary from as low as 3.5 – 8 years for a solar hot water system with a design life of over 30 years. For a more accurate figure of the payback time, please contact some reputed manufacturer.

Does use of solar water heater help the environment?

A 100 litre system, the average size of a household of 3 – 4 people, can prevent emissions of 0.4 to 1.0 tonnes of carbon dioxide per year. It reduces the carbon footprint and saves natural resources and conserve the environment.

Also Read: Solar Roof Top System for Electricity Generation

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