Solar Thermal System
& Space Heating System
The SHW and space heating system consists of eight collectors heating two 120-gallon tanks for heat storage that supplement the winter space-heating load. The heat is delivered to the home through a ceiling-mounted fan coil unit in the basement. In operation, the hot water is pumped from the solar storage tanks through the coils in the fan coil unit, and the fan distributes heat to the basement—with the goal of heating the basement to 75º F-plus during the daylight hours. Natural convection carries the heat upstairs.
To control the seasonal overproduction during the summer, this system has isolation valves that allow five collectors to be covered and one storage tank to be taken out of production in the summer when the heat isn’t needed, leaving three collectors uncovered and a single tank supply in operation for the SHW load. By isolating the one tank in this system, the SHW has a quicker recovery at the expense of less heat storage for extended periods of cloudy weather or extra-large loads. However, three collectors can more than adequately heat a 120-gallon tank in the summer.