Sunday, January 16, 2011

Ken's Large Solar Water Heating System

This is a very nicely done solar water heating system that generally follows the $1K design, but has a lot of excess capacity that can be used for hot tub or space heating purposes.

200 sqft of collector mounted on roof -- a nice look!
 Ken was able to get a set of older, but unused collectors from Craig's list.  The six collectors provide  nearly 200 square feet of collector area, so the system has excess capacity that Ken plans to use for hot tub heating and/or space heating.

 The tank is a very nicely done EPDM rubber lined tank with a capacity of nearly 500 gallons.  The design details on the tank are very nicely done, and it should be a good source of design information if you are building a tank for your system. 

The EPDM lined, non-pressurized nearly 500 gallon tank.

The PEX coil heat exchanger has been recoiled for improved heat transfer.

The 300 ft coil of  PEX heat exchanger recoiled for better efficiency.
All the details on Ken's system...

Thank you Ken for sending this in!



  1. Looks like you made a really nice system Ken. Very neat and well thought out. I'm envious of your shouldn't run out of hot water!


  2. very nice build, i would just be cautious of using cable ties inside the tank, i had used these and found that they had deteriorated and become brittle after 12 months


  3. Thanks for the nice compliments. I have to give credit to Gary and others because without their earlier endeavors I would never have been able to start this let alone complete it.

    As for the zip ties they may fail but the worse that will happen is the the coil will return to a compressed shape. However I suspect after a year of holding the same shape the PEX will have memory and likely stay in its new shape. I guess we will find out in a year.

    Thanks, Ken


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