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Installation Of Solar Water Heaters

When it comes to installation of water heater, it is always recommended that you hire a professional to do the job. Dealing with water heaters can be very dangerous due to the fact that these products work with hot water and other dangerous fuel sources. Hence, you rather be safe then sorry. But nevertheless, it is always good to know what steps are involved so you can work a way with your hot water heater professional.

The basic steps to install a closed-loop solar water-heating system are:

-You will have to mount the solar collectors on the roof
-Next, one has to install the solar storage tank and also install the heat exchanger next to conventional water heater
-Install the piping and pump for the glycol loop
-The water piping needs to be installed next
-Setup the controls
-Fill the system
-Insulate the water and glycol lines

We will try and walk you through few of the steps, so you may get an idea what each of these steps involves.

Step 1: Mount the solar collectors on the roof

Make sure that you have the fewest roof penetrations, when mounting collectors. There are some cases when you can get away by mounting the collector on the rood and run the piping through a vertical wall. Seal all roof penetrations with silicone sealant. Each manufacturer has their own supply of different hardware needed for mounting on the roof. Hence you make sure to follow the manufacturer's manual. Locate the rafters to which you will be attaching the collectors. You may be able to do this with a stud finder, or you may have to go inside the attic space and drill a small hole next to a rafter to locate it. Drill the hole, and then run a small wire out of the hole to help locate it on the outside.You have to make sure that to seal hole with some sort of silicone sealant. Based on the information from the market, each rafter is usually around 16 inches to 24 inches, center to center.

Step 2: Install the storage tank and heat exchange next to the conventional water heater
What most technicians usually suggest is to place the solar storage tank near the conventional water heater. If the heat exchanger is internal to the storage tank, make sure that the glycol loop connections to the heat exchanger and the cold and hot water connections are accessible. In case you have the exchanger in the external, it usually is supported by the plumping. Next you will have to install unions at the storage tank and heat exchanger connections, which will eventually makes sure that no piping needs to be cut off in case any part needs to be repalced.

Step 3: Piping installation and the pump for glycol loop
This steps usually is one of the most complicated procedure in installation of solar water heater, due to the amount of risk involved, it is not recommended that you attempt it yourself. Furthermore, as each situation will lead to a different way of installation, there cannot be a general explanation and hence we cannot state it.

Step 4: Install the water piping
Plumb the cold water energy in the house to the inlet of the solar storage tank, and the outlet of the solar storage tank to the inlet of the conventional water heater. Install valves and unions on the inlets and outlets of the tanks. If the heat exchanger is external to the solar storage tank, you may choose to use a natural convection loop between the heat exchanger and the solar storage tank, or you may install a pump to force water through the heat exchanger and tank. If you choose to use natural convection, you should use a large pipe—at least 1-1/4" copper—to get adequate flow through the heat exchanger. If you choose to install a pump to force water through the heat exchanger, you can use ½-inch copper pipe.

Step 5: Install the controls
Step 6: Fill the system
Step 7: Insulate water and glycol lines