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Solar Thermal Collectors

I Just Got Finished Installing My Solar Thermal System, Its About 3pm and The Sun Has Been Shining All Day. Should I Begin Commissioning The System With Heat Transfer Fluid?

I Just Got Finished Installing My Solar Thermal System, Its About 3pm and The Sun Has Been Shining All Day.  Should I Begin Commissioning The System With Heat Transfer Fluid? NO!!!  This is dangerous.  If your collectors have been sitting in the sun all day they have been heating up.  As soon as you introduce the Heat Transfer Fluid in the system it will immediately steam and could cause personal harm.  Wait till early the next morning when the collectors are cool to commission the system.

How Do I Mount Solar Collectors To A Metal Roof?

How Do I Mount Solar Collectors to a Metal Roof? SunMaxx makes it easy! No need for roof penetrations. We have clamps that mount directly on the seam of a metal roof, making installation quick and painless!

What Is The Difference Between Flat Plates And Evacuated Tube Collectors?

What is the difference between Flat Plates and Evacuated Tube Collectors? While both types of collectors capture the suns energy and convert it to hot water each have there own advantages. Evacuated Tube Collectors are best used in northern climates where freezing can occur and can be utilized in areas where temperatures drop down to -60°F. Evacuated Tubes are are extremely efficient by virtue of the Tubes themselves. Each Evacuated Tube is hermetically sealed meaning it is highly insulated due to the fact that it is a sealed atmosphere nearly impervious to outside temperatures. Evacuated tubes can also be replaced […]

Can I Mount Solar Thermal Collectors On A Flat Roof Without Roof Penetrations?

Can I Mount Solar Thermal Collectors On A Flat Roof Without Roof Penetrations? Yes you can. Collectors can be attached to our ballast system, which uses the weight of standard patio blocks to hold the collectors in place. Wind load calculations must be done by an engineer to conform to local building codes. With the proper weight attached, collectors will stay in place without putting any holes in the roof. This has been done with our evacuated tube collectors and our flat plates. Flat plates obviously have a much higher wind resistance, and therefore require greater weight to hold them […]

How Can I Match Up Collector Connections On A Roof With The Rafters?

How Can I Match Up Collector Connections On A Roof With The Rafters?

What is the best angle to position my collectors?

This answer depends on what you are trying to accomplish. For simple Domestic Hot Water systems you should try and position you collectors at the same angle as your latitude. For systems that are tied into the home heating system, as in a combisystem, you should position you collectors 15 degrees higher than your latitude. For summertime use only systems, as in a pool system, you should position your collectors at your latitude minus 15 degrees. For systems that have a high solar fraction, i.e. 75% or greater, you should increase the angle of incline in order to decrease your […]

What is more important, postioning the collectors for maximum aesthetic appeal or maximum solar gain?

Do you want to make this system perform to its highest ability or should it look nice and fit the architecture of the house? We have all seen those albatrosses on the roof that are cantilevered at a compound angle to get a few extra BTU’s at the cost of aesthetic appeal. Here are some guidelines to consider when deciding what is most important in determining collector orientation and inclination. For most collectors, tubes or flat plates, the angle of inclination has a 30 degree window of variation and the performance will still be within 95% of the expected maximum. […]

Is it possible to melt snow off of my collectors?

Yes it is. Depending on your type of collector, you can program your controller to manually activate the circulator which will bring heat from your storage vessel and into the collectors, which will radiate that heat back out thus melting the snow. This method only works for FLAT PLATES however and will usually take as much energy as it makes. When the sun is out in full force, the rays passing through thge snow are typically enough to create substantial heat that in turn, melts the snow on flat plates. For Evacuated tubes however, there is very little you can […]

How do I decide between Flat plate and Evacuated tube?

This will be a debate well in to the future. For an more in-depth review please watch this Click here to watch this 1/2 hour webinar. Your decision should be based primarily on the following considerations: 1- Temperature demand– What is you existing application? EVT’s will outperform FP’s at higher temp load. 2- Climate location- In a general sense, flat plates have more value than evacuated tubes in warmer climates and EVT’s will do better in cold, cloudy climates. 3-Aesthetics appeal– This is where there is no “right” answer. Instead, each person has their own personal view. We recommend that […]

How do I attach solar panels to my shingle roof without causing leaks?

Our ConnectMaxx roof hooks are designed for any roof. We suggest that each be attached directly into a rafter using two Simpson Strong-Drive screws. Roof caulk can be used to seal these penetrations. (One installer we know used butyl rubber.) Our concave X-mount flashing then fits securely over the roof hook and under the shingles for a weatherproof connection. All of our collectors can be mounted using these roof hooks.

How well will my collectors perform if they are not positioned perfectly?

Fortunately, solar thermal collectors are not nearly as sensitive to light conditions as PV collectors. As for performance, you have roughly a 60 degree window of opportunity to mount the collectors toward south before you begin losing a small bit of total production. In other words, your house can be situated 30 to the east of true south or 30 degrees to the west of true south and your performance will still be at or above 95%. As far as tilt angle goes, this window opportunity is slightly smaller but still you can have a roof pitched about 20 degrees […]

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