If you are looking to make your home more energy-efficient, installing solar panels to naturally supply some of the necessary power is a logical solution. Most homeowners who start out with a few solar panels installed will want to utilize this power in the best way possible. With the water heater accounting for as much as 18 percent of electrical use in the average household, this appliance is one that often gets considered when it comes to deciding what to have relying on solar energy. But is relying on solar power to provide hot water really a good idea? Here are a few things you should know.
Electrical hot water heaters don't make a good fit with typical solar panels.
You absolutely can connect your water heater to the power banks connected to the integrated solar panels you have, but this is not always a good idea. The energy demands of a typical electrical hot water heater will be far more demanding than what a few panels can logically supply. You may have hot water, but it will likely be limited. These systems continuously need the energy to keep the water in the tank hot, which will likely drain far more solar energy than you can harvest from a few panels.
Tankless hot water heaters do work fairly well on solar panels.
Tankless water heaters only heat the water that is demanded instead of holding several gallons at a heated temperature all the time in wait for it to be used. Therefore, the electrical demands of a tankless water heater are far less, which means these units can do a pretty good job with a connection to only solar energy. Of course, whether or not the whole idea will work out for you will depend on just how much hot water you use daily.
Water heaters designed for use with solar power can be a better solution.
Instead of opting to connect your existing hot water to newly installed solar panels, it may be best to use this energy for something else in your home entirely. There are hot water heaters that are designed to work specifically with solar energy, and these units will come with their own solar power supplication panels and system. Those that are designed to work with solar energy to start with will be far more efficient and are likely to be much more fitting for your home.