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  • Water Storage

    I stopped by a neighbor's place yesterday when I shoulda been workin on my place. He was building a metal base up over his workshop to hold a 500 gallon water storage tank that would gravity feed without power. He also showed me
    a solar water heater that he had going. He took a used double-paned panel from a sliding-glass door, sized an 8 inch deep box under it, lined bottom and sides with foil-faced foam insulation board. This one was not intended for continuous flow, but to fill in the AM and use at about sunset. It will have (3) 5 inch diameter pipes connected together and painted flat black. Even on a cloudy day, a couple of folks would be able to have a quick shower that would be alot warmer than well water. (Please note that I did not specify whether that is together or one at a time, but I must add this note- studies have shown that water is NOT saved when 2 share a shower, typically speaking. :D ) It seems that one could use larger diameter pipe and/or more of them.

    The project that I shoulda been workin on at my place is a truss and metal roof over 2 single-wides separated by 6 feet. Yes, yes, I know- trailer-house trash. ( "NO MORE DEBT- EVER" is more important to me than impressing my "friends" w/ a purty house.) If I had only made that resolve 20 or 30 years ago. Jeff Foxworthy would love our place! Okay, where was I- oh yes--- the 6 feet in between will have a huge utility/storage room, and main entry. Above that will be an 8' by ?' room (with a 360 degree perimeter view).
    NOW I'm thinking about stretching the "upper room" back out AGAIN to about 16 feet. (It has gone from 6x6 to 12x20 on the drawing board, then WAS to be 8x8........till yesterday.) Have you ever ran out of propane on Friday afternoon and not able to get filled until Monday afternoon? Well water makes a cooooooooold shower! I am thinking about a 300 gallon (+,-) tank in the middle of the length of the room, on the South wall, walls around lined w/ foil-faced foam-board, 4' of center section of South wall sided w/ clear polycarbonate roofing material, 4' center section of South-facing roofed w/ same. I am thinking that I will go directly from the warmed tank to the water heater only (and perhaps later through a roof-mounted home made solar continuous-flow water heater either by-passing or going to the propane water heater). All I know about plumbing is "don't bite your fingernails". If anyone has suggestions, especially on how to route, and valve this - please tell all of us.
    By the way, the "continuous feed" solar WH is is only warm from sunup plus a few hours to sunset plus a little while, depending, of course on the air temp. The difference between a "continuous feed" and what I described above is the CFWH would have a roll of black poly pipe stuffed inside of it instead of large pipes.
    I will add post as this develops. It will be slow going since I have been unemployed since 12-12-08. I may have to trade ammo and projectile-firing specialty tools to get the materials I will need.........NAAAAAAH!:D

  • #2
    And pictures! Add pictures!!
    "Be Excellent to Each Other"

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    • #3
      Pictures, plans

      I don't think my neighbor would take too kindly to me takin' pics of his stuff- you know how some of those survivalist folks can be sometimes!:D

      Hows about this link:

      http://www.motherearthnews.com/Renew...er-Heater.aspx

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      • #4
        another good link

        Here is more good basic info-
        copper is more expensive, black poly will not last as long- My thinking is buy large roll of bl pol, use a portion, keep the rest in cool dark place for future replacements.

        http://www.builditsolar.com/Projects...er_heating.htm

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        • #5
          I like this one: Beer Bottle Solar Heater
          "Be Excellent to Each Other"

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          • #6
            Awesome info, and a VERY valuable project but.....


            WHAT IF THE AMERICA YOU KNEW, WAS ABOUT TO CHANGE?

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            • #7
              In order to increase the amount of hot water produced, it is a better idea to use a smaller diameter pipe, but increase the amount of them. Similar to a radiator in a car, the more chambers there are, the better the heat transfer is.
              "Reject the basic assumptions of civilization, especially the importance of material possessions." "The things you own end up owning you"-Tyler Durden

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              • #8
                situating a holding tank in the attic to 'preheat' the water before it goes into a hot water heater will save about 30% of the energy it takes to heat the water with the heater. If you are going to use a solar panel system to heat water, its still a good idea to situate the tank in the attic to take advantage of that heat up there. Some days my attic is warm enough to heat the water to uncomfortable, even without any additional energy to heat it.
                Classic Southern defense: "But your Honor, he just NEEDED killin!

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