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Old 03-03-10, 03:43 PM   #22
Trevor
Lurking Renovator
 
Join Date: Mar 2010
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I am a newbie to solar, I have been reading a lot and Gary's design really caught my eye. I live in Vermont with my wife and three daughters (teenage years are coming so hot water is going to be in short supply at my house). I heat my house 90% of the time with a Vermont Castings Defiant wood stove located in the basement next to my current hot water tank. I also have an oil fired boiler that I use for heating my DHW and base board heat. I am in the process of installing a secondary hot water tank that will feed the primary tank. The water in the secondary tank (80 gallon electric tank that will not be wired) will be preheated by circulating water through a heat exchanger on the back of my woodstove.

I had seen quite a few people that had put an exchanger inside the stove, but that just scared me, we lose power occasionally and I really did not want to come home one day and find pieces of my stove in the living room because it blew up.

So now you know a little about my setup, here is the solar question. Since I have a way to heat my hot water in the winter months with the woodstove heat exchanger could I use Gary’s PEX panel design to preheat my water in the summer months? I know it would have to be drained in the winter and I would probably move it into the garage. It would be considered a Direct Pumped System.

I know a couple of things would need changing, like the fact that I can’t use PEX-AL-PEX for potable water so I would probably use 1/2” PEX with elbow on each end. I would also have to put a pressure release valve and probably an air vent at the top of the panel where the water exits. I would utilize the same secondary tank and circulator so I think I am looking at about $300 to create the panel with enough pipe to bring it into the cellar. Any thoughts?


I had a couple of links to show examples but it would not allow me to post them, so if you have a question on my design please email me or post a reply. Thanks
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