The Survival Podcast Forum

Energy Options => Solar Power => Topic started by: Mr. Blank on December 15, 2008, 03:05:43 PM

Title: Cheap DIY solar water heater
Post by: Mr. Blank on December 15, 2008, 03:05:43 PM
This is one I will be building for sure. :)

http://www.builditsolar.com/Experimental/CopperAlumCollector/Construction.htm
Title: Re: Cheap DIY solar water heater
Post by: Tactical Badger on January 20, 2009, 09:19:55 AM
Nice!!  I like that a lot!
Title: Re: Cheap DIY solar water heater
Post by: TXChikk on January 20, 2009, 09:56:25 AM
I like it too! This will be great for the ranch a friend & I plan to own "someday". Thanks for the link and +1!  :)
Title: Re: Cheap DIY solar water heater
Post by: LdMorgan on May 03, 2009, 09:31:28 PM
I just finished a solar box designed to pre-heat the water that goes to my electric water heater.

I made it out of scrap materials, except for the copper pipe & valves, fiberglass insulation, and caulk. I had an old sliding door lying around that provided the glass, and I scrounged an old 40-gallon water tank from someone that had just upgraded their water well. I painted everything flat black inside after reading that tests back in the 1920's showed that to be exactly as efficient as fancy internal reflectors.

I was lucky: I had a South-facing wall close to my electric water heater, so I just went in through the wall and tied in to the existing lines. It was a cramped installation, and I spent a l-o-o-o-ng time figuring out how the pipes and valves could be made to fit, but it worked.  They say short feed lines are important, so I went for the shortest.

The whole project cost about $100.00, and seems to be knocking about $45.00 a month off my electric bill--and it's not even summer yet. That sure beats those projects that promise a hefty payback in only 15 years.

I'll have some pics up in a day or two. Gotta get batteries for the camera.

Title: Re: Cheap DIY solar water heater
Post by: Mr. Blank on May 03, 2009, 10:16:33 PM
Looking forward to those pics.  ;D
Title: Re: Cheap DIY solar water heater
Post by: archer on May 04, 2009, 09:21:14 PM
The whole project cost about $100.00, and seems to be knocking about $45.00 a month off my electric bill--and it's not even summer yet. That sure beats those projects that promise a hefty payback in only 15 years.

I'll have some pics up in a day or two. Gotta get batteries for the camera.
Oh nice! Looking forward to pics and to see how it does this summer.. +1
Title: Re: Cheap DIY solar water heater
Post by: LdMorgan on May 05, 2009, 11:49:04 AM
Here's pics of the box and the valve setup inside the washroom. Real short pipe runs. I can cut out the tank with the two top valves and work on it without a major flood. While still having water pressure to the house, I mean.

It's all standard 2X4 stud construction, with plywood walls & fiberglass batt insulation. Just a box with an old tank in it.

The glass needs a little cleaning, but it's still workin' fine.

(http://i733.photobucket.com/albums/ww335/ldmorgan222/SolBox2.gif)

(http://i733.photobucket.com/albums/ww335/ldmorgan222/SolBox1.jpg)

(http://i733.photobucket.com/albums/ww335/ldmorgan222/SolValves1.gif)
Title: Re: Cheap DIY solar water heater
Post by: archer on May 05, 2009, 12:02:16 PM
Nice job. I could almost do that... +1
Title: Re: Cheap DIY solar water heater
Post by: P_Coltrane on May 05, 2009, 12:37:49 PM
And on the plus side, you have an additional 40 gallons of water storage.

Great job!
Title: Re: Cheap DIY solar water heater
Post by: archer on May 05, 2009, 12:42:42 PM
And on the plus side, you have an additional 40 gallons of water storage.

Great job!
Very good point!
Title: Re: Cheap DIY solar water heater
Post by: smkymtn on May 09, 2009, 06:13:07 AM
 Thanks Trioxin!
Title: Re: Cheap DIY solar water heater
Post by: Mr. Blank on June 18, 2009, 07:46:57 PM
 ;D
Title: Re: Cheap DIY solar water heater
Post by: Possenti2264 on June 19, 2009, 10:02:49 AM
I read somewhere about a DIY parabolic mirror using a curved screen tv (if you can find one, heh).  Of course, it would evaporate the water and fry the container.

Title: Re: Cheap DIY solar water heater
Post by: frankd4 on August 04, 2014, 10:46:07 AM
I run my dump load to DC heating elements in my water heater, once my batteries are charged instead of wasting the power into the dump load I heat my water.
Title: Re: Cheap DIY solar water heater
Post by: keebler on August 04, 2014, 02:11:55 PM
very nice job---thanks for the write up & pictures..
Title: Re: Cheap DIY solar water heater
Post by: Beetlebum on August 20, 2014, 07:36:01 AM
This is one I will be building for sure. :)

http://www.builditsolar.com/Experimental/CopperAlumCollector/Construction.htm

Wow, that looks like a fantastic site! Aaaand... bookmarked. I've already seen great points made for now construction, great DIY projects and the common sense strategy of planning and understanding your upgrades. I hope it continues to impress. Thanks!
Title: Re: Cheap DIY solar water heater
Post by: Perfesser on October 13, 2014, 04:23:16 PM
The connection between the absorber plate and pipes is the key to this kind of heater and eventually with expansion forces it will corrode and degrade . I was able to solder narrow copper sheets to the pipes (at a much closer spacing) for a better, longer lasting connection.