The benefits of solar hot water

Solar hot water systems deliver reasonable financial benefits when the Renewable Heat Incentive and RHPP are taken into account:

  • Reduced heating costs: By converting free sunlight into heat, you can reduce your heating and hot water bill by as much as £80 a year, with the RHPP scheme giving a grant of £300. With the Renewable Heat Incentive included, this saving will be even greater.
  • Reduced carbon footprint: Energy from the sun produces no carbon dioxide or other harmful greenhouse gases.
  • Hot water all year: The system works all year round, though you'll need to heat the water further with a boiler or immersion heater during the winter months.
  • Low maintenance: Most solar water heating systems come with a 5-10 year warranty and require little maintenance.

Calculate your savings!

Typical Savings

Solar water-heating can provide you with about half of your hot water needs. In a study by BRE, 6 houses fitted with solar water heating were monitored and the energy savings in heating and hot water varied from 26 – 70%. The average was 50%, which is an average saving of 1,200 kWh of energy per year.

Energy Saving Trust studies suggest savings based on the hot water and heating requirements of a 3 bed semi-detached home with a 3.4m2 collector are £80 a year for a home using electricity, and £55 per year for a gas heated home.

What to do next?

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FAQs

How much do solar thermal collectors weigh?
It depends on the make, but in they usually weigh in the region of about 20kg per square metre. Typical panels can measure around 2m x 1m or 2m x 2m, with 5m2 needed for the average installation.
Are solar thermal collectors or panels fragile?
Not typically - they are designed to withstand the elements so they should be quite robust. All MCS accredited products should last their predicted 20 year lifetime.
How hot does solar heated water get?
Very hot! The water can easily exceed 100°C, therefore it is important that the components are able to withstand these temperatures. All MCS certified products will be able to do so.
Can I heat my swimming pool with solar thermal panels?
Yes, Solar thermal water heating can be a very effective for pools.
What is the heat output of a solar thermal system in kWh?
Outputs from a domestic solar water heating system typically range from 1000 - 2500kWh per year.
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