Easy and Inexpensive Solar Hot Water

This instructable will show you how to utilize the summer's sun to keep your water tank full of hot water for no expense. Watch the video above for the complete tour.

Step 1: Needs

1. 300 ft. of 3/4" black Polyethylene pipe. (Footage depends on size of roof)
2. 15 watt solar panel running a circulator pump directly.

3. Enough hoses, pipes, and aqueduct to get the water to your old water tank.

Step 2: Roof

- You will lay out the black pipes on your roof to soak up the sun's hot rays.

- A 15 watt solar panel will power the circulator pump indoors.

Step 3: The Circulator Pump

- Place a nominal 12v circulator pump inside to keep water flowing from the roof, to the tank, and back out again.

* Make sue that you label the directions of all pipes, so you don't mix the hot and cold!

Step 4: Install a Valve on Outside Pipes

- A valve is needed at the point where the outside line connects to the inside. This is to drain the system before winter cold freezes them.

Step 5: Install a Bypass

- On the inside, where the outside pipes come in, you need a bypass valve so that in winter your system still works.

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    5 Discussions


    2 years ago

    Like it a lot... basically what I want to do with my off-grid cabin. Can you send me more info please

    Regards Chris


    2 years ago

    what temperature is the water come out at?

    1 reply

    In the summer it will keep the tank around 120-130 deg F. In the spring and fall it is still a very helpful preheat and much of the time is warm enough for a shower.