Monday, December 7, 2009

THREE new Owner Built Solar Space Heating Systems

This has been a good week for new solar space heating systems sent in to Build-It-Solar!
Thanks very much to the Eric, Al, and Tom for describing there well designed and built systems. 
These are all large collector systems that can do significant solar heating -- lots to learn from the detailed descriptions of these systems.

The 1st is Eric's space heating and hot tub heating system that uses 300 sqft of water heating solar collectors, and has both a solar and boiler heat source.

The 2nd is Al's space heating collector that is primarily a solar air heating collector, but also has a smaller water heating capability integrated in the same collector.

The 3rd is Tom's new 330 sqft solar space heating system.  This system uses Tom's 3rd generation design for the copper tube, aluminum fin collectors.  This installment covers the design, build and install for the collectors.  The next will cover heat storage, plumbing, and controls.

See below for summaries, and the links for very detailed descriptions.

Al's Hybrid Air and Water Heating Collector
This is a very nicely done collector of about 100 sqft.  It is a space heating collector that primarily heats air that is circulated directly into the house.  But, it also has a smaller water heating capability that is used to store some heat for use during the night.

Its a nice looking collector that is well integrated with the house.

Since the collector area is about 15% of the house floor area, the collector will often generate more heat that can be immediately used on a sunny day, so it makes sense to add the limited water heating capability to store some heat for use later in the evening.

All the design and construction details from Al here...

Eric's Space Heating, Water Heating, Hot Tub Heating Solar System
This is a very nicely designed and built system from Eric -- a fellow Bozeman resident.
The system uses about 320 sqft of commercially made water heating collectors as its main heat source.  The collected solar heat is used for 1) space heating, 2) domestic water heating, and 3) hot tub heating.  The system also integrates a boiler as the secondary heat source.  


This is a pretty complicated system in that it heats floor space, a hot tub, and domestic water, and includes both a solar and boiler heat source into the same system. 
This is a difficult set of things to do, but Eric pulls it off with a pretty simple system.  Maybe the fact that he is in the HVAC business and specializes in solar system helps :)

All the details on Eric's system...

Tom's Large Solar Space Heating System
Tom's new space heating system uses 330 sqft of the aluminum fin/copper tube collector design.  This is about Tom's 3rd generation build of this type of collector, and he has a very refined design.   The collectors are mounted in a good looking common housing, and glazed with twinwall polycarbonate glazing.  Performance should be very good.


All the details on Tom's System...

Much more on Solar Space Heating Systems...


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