If you are looking for an alternative way to heat your home, office or place of business that is environmentally friendly and cost effective, you should consider installing an active solar heating system. Active solar heating systems are incredibly efficient as they make use of the sun to capture heat that keeps your living and working environment warm. Let’s take a deeper look into this remarkable technology.
The Active Solar Heating System’s Collector
An active solar heating system starts with the collector. Rays from the sun shine into the solar collector where they are captured as heat energy. The sun’s rays actually shine through the system’s glass window. This window allows light to enter but it prevents heat from exiting. Below this thick window is a dark colored tube that holds either a refrigerant or water. Below this tube is a special curved reflector. This device helps transmit the sunlight to the tube. The tube absorbs the sunlight and heats the water that is inside of it.
How The Active Solar Heating System Creates Hot Water
The tube’s water is moved around with the help of a pump. This circulation creates warmth for the water and even the structure that the active solar heating system supports. This tube is placed in a water tank. Since it is metal, it is an excellent heat conductor. The heat extends from the tube to the tank and hot water is created for the home. This tube then runs toward the solar collector to capture even more heat or it goes to the home’s heating system for warmth.
How The Active Solar Heating System Warms The Building
Some buildings with solar heating make use of this circulation of hot water to generate warm air. The hot water tube described above extends into radiators that are placed all around the home. These radiators pull heat from the hot water and send it directly into the home’s warm air to heat the home. Once the water moves through the radiators, it is sent right back into the collector where it collects even more heat.
Supporting The Active Solar Heating System
While solar power is an excellent means of heating a home or business during the hours when the sun is shining, it needs to be supplemented on the overcast days and at night. A building that relies solely on its active solar heating system for warmth, will likely end up being a bit cold at times. Most buildings with active solar heating systems have backup systems in place for those times when there is not enough solar heat. Some homes have backup water heaters that provide supplemental heat when the hot water’s temperature drops below a user designated threshold. Other buildings utilize air heaters that are turned on during periods of inclement weather. Most solar houses also make use of insulation to make the most efficient use of their solar heat. Proper insulation prevents this precious heat from leaking out of the home and back into the environment.
Active Solar Heating: The Future Is Here
Active solar heating systems are reaching a mainstream tipping point. Homeowners and business owners across the world are tapping into this incredibly efficient means of heating indoor environments. In especially sunny climates, this heating system rarely needs to be supplemented. As the technology improves, it will become even more efficient and cost effective. Eventually, the majority of homes and businesses will rely on active solar heating systems to generate warm air and warm water.