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Have you ever felt warm water trickle out of a garden hose that's been sitting in the sun? If so, then you've witnessed solar water heating in action.

Now imagine that same water moving slowly though a system specifically designed to heat and store water – that is the essence of solar thermal water heating. People have for centuries used water heated by the sun and stored it for bathing, hand washing, cleaning clothes, heating homes and much more.

The solar thermal systems used today combine the most efficient techniques for capturing the sun's heat with modern plumbing systems to produce cost effective hot water and reduce the need for gas or electricity to heat water.

There are a number of different solar thermal designs, but all are based on the same simple principle as the garden hose. Each has its pros and cons, and each is suitable for a specific application.

DId you know?Our favorite system for installations in Southern California is the closed-loop drainback system. This type of system is relatively simple, effective and reliable. It also addresses all the typical problems that affect life expectancy in other solar hot water systems, such as: corrosion, clogging (from hard water buildup), freezing (solar panels are subject to freezing at much higher temperatures than standard exposed water piping) and overheating. Distilled water rather than propylene glycol ("greener" option) is used as a heat exchanger recirculation fluid. Distilled water prevents hard water build up and corrosion in the solar collectors, pump, heat exchanger and collector loop. The drain back feature prevents freezing and overheating. For solar thermal panel spec sheet, click here.

If you want to find out more about different types of solar thermal systems, click here.

Why not let the sun heat your water, rather than paying the gas company?

Contact us today and have a consultant come out and determine if solar water heating is right for you.

For more information, on the history of solar, click here.