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  • Poodle Head Mikey commented on CBGjr's instructable Screened Solar Air Heater3 years ago
    Screened Solar Air Heater

    With solar heat collectors thermal mass is the enemy. Because you want the heat elsewhere - that is the point of collecting it. Storing the heat in the collector is always counter productive. Also: when testing do not put a lot of weight into the idea getting "hot" air out of the collector - the hotter the air out is - the more heat you are leaving behind in the collector. Greater air flow and a lower temperature difference will result in more BTU's collected.And also: try not to use a window as a solar collector. A window is Already a solar collector - so using it's wall area as a collector doesn't really gain anything.A really easy way is to use a convection-only below-the-window heater. I don't know how to post pictures but maybe I can find you a link. http://www....

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    With solar heat collectors thermal mass is the enemy. Because you want the heat elsewhere - that is the point of collecting it. Storing the heat in the collector is always counter productive. Also: when testing do not put a lot of weight into the idea getting "hot" air out of the collector - the hotter the air out is - the more heat you are leaving behind in the collector. Greater air flow and a lower temperature difference will result in more BTU's collected.And also: try not to use a window as a solar collector. A window is Already a solar collector - so using it's wall area as a collector doesn't really gain anything.A really easy way is to use a convection-only below-the-window heater. I don't know how to post pictures but maybe I can find you a link. http://www.motherearthnews.com/diy/diy-solar-heati...I built them flush to the wall under the window but this angled mount would be more efficient for more of the day. The thru-the-window part is split so that air flows in the bottom slot and down across the rear of the heat collector inside, then makes a 180º turn around the bottom edge, and then flows upward across the front of the heated surface again until finally rising up and out of the top slot in the thru-the-window part and into the room. It's amazing how well they perform.I build mostly hydronic solar collectors / systems now but air is easier/faster/cheaper for most people to start with. Plus: no moving parts and no maintenance - unless the screen gets dusty. <g>

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