DIY Hot Water Solar in Maine

Steve has designed and built a very nice solar space and water heating system in Maine.   The system has a number of interesting and unique features including,

- A large "hizer" collector with full width "riser" running horizontally.

- Integration of the solar heating with a boiler.

- A Steve made controller for the system.

- A new technique for making the PEX heat exchangers.

- Drain back of the collector to a tank 70 ft from the collector.

28 ft diy solar water heating collectorSteve's 28 ft wid solar water heating collector

Steve provides a pdf with a complete description of the system below.

Quick Overview

The collector is 28 ft wide and is built as a single "hizer" style collector rather than 7 or so side by side vertically oriented collectors that would normally be used.

hizer solar collector
The "hizer" arrangement.
collector ground mount
Drawing of the collector support base.
solar collector heat fins
Collector box and fin consturction.

Note the large savings in material and cost that result from building the collector as a single unit.  The commercial equivalent to this would be 7 side by side thousand dollar collectors plus a full mounting base for them.

In Steve's system, the solar heat source and boiler heat source are integrated into a single heating system.

solar heating system diagram
Diagram of the solar/boiler  heating system.


The heat exchangers use large coils of PEX that have been recoiled for more efficient heat transfer.

pex heat exchanger for solar heating system
The efficiently coiled heat exchanger in the EPDM
lined solar heat storage tank.
pex heat exchanger coiling tool
The form that Steve worked out for recoiling
the PEX heat exchanger.

Steve also designed and built the controller for the system.

diy controller for solar space heating systems.
Steve's homemade system controller

All the Details

For all of the details on the design and build of the solar heating system download this pdf...




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