Maughan Energy and Environmental Consultants

Solar thermal is the most commonly installed form of solar energy currently in use today. Solar water heating can typically provide almost all hot water requirements during the summer months and about 60% year round.

There are three main components for domestic hot water systems: Solar panels, a heat transfer system, and a hot water cylinder. The solar panels, or collectors, are usually fitted to the roof and collect heat from the sun’s radiation. This heat is used to raise the temperature of the household water and is delivered by the heat transfer system which takes the heated water to the hot water cylinder for storage until use.

The performance of a solar thermal system is best when the solar collectors are installed on a southeast to southwest facing roof receiving direct sunlight for the main part of the day. There are different types of solar systems available, the typical installation cost for a domestic solar collector system is €2,500 - €3,500. The average domestic system will usually provide all of an average family’s hot water during summer months and about 60% year round. The solar thermal system would typically save approximately 400kg of CO2 per year, depending on the fuel replaced.

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