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Old 07-29-11, 08:55 AM   #21
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Just wanted to add these links:

Outcome of my Pex Solar Water Collector project

Video of my first DIY Solar Collector Box using 300' Pex Coil

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Last edited by Daox; 08-10-11 at 01:20 PM..
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Old 07-29-11, 09:13 AM   #22
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Originally Posted by raydias View Post
What I was thinking is if the water in your tank can be circulated through the pex during the day you could conceivable have the tank up to 120 or higher by the next day. Insulate the tank and the temp should remain within a reasonable range

Just thinking out loud for my own design ideas
I think you are correct on having a 40 gallon tank full of hot water on hot sunny days, but i think in the winter months or days when its very cloudy then I dont think the tank will be at sufficient temp. But if im just using the stored Collector water directly into the hot water line to the house, then that water will be much hotter and be enough for a long single use at the end of the afternoon, and will get recharged the following day. Ive got a couple days history now on the operation , and yesterday was 84 f. outside , very cloudy , and rained most of the day --- at 5 pm when i took my shower, I still got 100 f. for a 5-10 min. shower. WHen i finished with my shower, it was just starting to get cool . Today, we have full sun all day long on a 93 f. day so I expect the Collector water to be around 150 f. which will give me a longer shower because ill be diluting that temperature water with the cold faucet . This project works great for the single person as myself, but obviously for a family it wouldnt be sufficient.
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Old 07-29-11, 09:25 AM   #23
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Is the collector plumbed inline with your hot water heater? Is it before or after it? Or, is it in parallel and you throw some valves to select what to use?
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Old 07-29-11, 10:11 AM   #24
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Is the collector plumbed inline with your hot water heater? Is it before or after it? Or, is it in parallel and you throw some valves to select what to use?
It is in parallel to the water heater and i put a 3 valve bypass on it so i can either use just the Collector water into the house hot water line, or, just the water heater into the house water line. Ive taken a video as i was installing the entire system and ill post a URL here soon. THe entire project came in at just under $400.00 for materials which i figure is roughly a 1.5 year payback.

Some changes im going to make are :

1. Add some swing legs to the sides of the Collector Box so i can alternate between a 30 degree angle from vertical for winter months and horizontal to ground for summer months.

2. Add some 36" long 3/4" i.d. hi temp. flexible stainless steel Water Connectors at the Collector Box to accomodate the above change .

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