Tips for getting the best out of your solar hot water system

Australia really is the lucky country and we often take for granted many of our day-to-day commodities, such as a plentiful supply of hot water at any time – day or night. Regardless, with the ever-increasing energy price hikes and our very real concern about our carbon footprint, the time has come to look at alternatives. Particularly considering conventional hot water systems make up about 30% of an average Aussie energy bill!

A solar hot water system installed in your home will supply 90% or more of your hot water usage and can cut your energy bills by 50 to 85%, plus, they provide the all-important added bonus of reducing our greenhouse gas emissions. Using the suns energy to heat your water just makes too much sense, in so many different ways – to ignore it as a truly viable alternative for our hot water supply is madness.

Considering the cost of installing your solar hot water system, as well as the positives on your energy bills by utilising and implementing all available information, it is essential we use our system properly to maximise its efficiency.

First things first, it’s a great idea to ask yourself a few vital questions. What are the expectations you have from your solar hot water system? For example, how many people will need to use the hot water on a regular basis? We all know teenagers use copious amounts of the stuff, so the answer to this is to install a larger holding tank in unison with a compatible solar array. If you do this, you will have plenty of hot water on those cloudy days, or the days when your teenagers come out of the bathroom looking like prunes.

To guarantee continuous hot water, solar systems can work in unison with your energy company and a booster switch will need to be installed. Make sure this is placed somewhere convenient so it’s easily accessible. Your grid connection can therefore be turned off to take advantage of our sun, and turned on when there’s cloud cover or at night time.

Check with your energy supplier to find the best tariffs and peak times and adjust this accordingly. Also, have an inspection of your hot water pipes to make sure they are all are protected with insulation of at least 15 mm in thickness. By doing this, you will limit (by up to 50%) the amount of heat that could potentially be lost.

At Hush, our solar hot water systems are extremely efficient and very effective when installed and used correctly. We have many premium systems on offer that cater for a wide and varied market, including from Rinnai and CMD. You can opt for roof mounted or split systems and you can choose to have a dual connection with your electricity provider or install a system large enough to be ‘off grid’.

Evidence now coming to hand (and we all know this) is that the advantage and benefits of solar to heat our water is advancing in leaps and bounds. We have only just scratched the surface of this exciting new technology. Apart from hip pocket savings, we are reducing our carbon footprint and can now enjoy a lovely warm shower guilt-free!

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