Monday, May 3, 2010

New on Build-It-Solar: Tracking solar water heater, Lowtech solar Hot tub, PEX coil HX, Solar cheese, Kid power saver

Tracking Solar Water Heater
While tracking solar electric (PV) collectors are common, there are not many tracking solar water heating collectors.  Here is a nice, simple, inexpensive way to do a tracking water heating collector and gain about 30% on energy collected over a sunny day.

Details on Solar heating system that tracks the sun...

Low Tech Solar Hot Tub
Hot tubs are terrible energy hogs.  Here is how "Ants" in NZ did a solar heated hot tub with a wood burning water heater for backup -- and for not much money to boot!

Details on the low tech, low cost solar hot tub...

Nice Water to Water Heat Exchanger Using a PEX Coil
This is a nice job on a heat exchanger made from a large coil of PEX pipe.  This heat exchanger sits in the solar heat storage tank.   Potable water flows through the PEX coil before going to the water heater and is pre-heated by the solar heated water.  
All the construction details on this heat exchanger...

This heat exchanger is a refined version of the one used on the $1K solar water heating system.

Making Cheese the Solar Way
Cheese making has a very high energy demand in the form of heating water for pasteurizing the cheese.
Here is a simple solar water heating setup that heats the water with sun.

Using Motion Switches and Timers to Save Electricity
Some more ideas on saving electricity.

  • Using motion sensing switches to save power when no one is around to use it.  Does a photon waste energy when no is around to see it?  YES!
  • Using timers to eliminate phantom load power drains -- as in picture to right.
  • Outsmarting your power squandering kids with timers and motion switches -- a story from Doug.

New power saving ideas here...

A bazillion more power saving ideas here -- I guarantee some of them will be new to you...

And more of them here -- the set we used to cut our energy use in half...

And, a bunch more that cost almost nothing to do -- the Frugal section...

Let me know if you have more...

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