Solar Hot Water at Earthaven Ecovillage
(Transcript from video):
Courtney Brooke: Good morning Zev.
Zev: Good morning.
Courtney Brooke: What are you doing?
Zev: I just took the cover off our solar hot water panel. It was covered for the winter and now the sun is hitting it. I let water in and that’s going to be heating water up so that we have nice piping hot water in our sink throughout the warm season.
Courtney Brooke: So that water gets hot in there and then where does the water go?
Zev: Then it gets pushed by the gravity from our high spring cistern which is about 60 vertical feet above the house pipe down here. It gets pushed by that pressure back through that cover pipe and into our hot water tank which is on the second floor of the house . Then it just is stored there by gravity to feed down into our sink in the kitchen and the sink in the in the other bedroom
Courtney Brooke: So there’s no pump?
Zev: No pumps.
Courtney Brooke: no electricity?
Zev: Yeah that’s right. It’s not quite passive because water is moving but yeah it’s a solar panel called a pt50 which has these four inch diameter metal tubes inside that have enough water that they can resist some freezing in the spring and fall but also have enough surface area that they can get enough surface area to volume ratio from the sun to heat the water up to like 140 degrees or something.
Courtney Brooke: And is the water like hot all the time?
Zev: Not when the sun’s not shining.
Courtney Brooke: Ohhh.
Zev: Yeah, but it’s there. Our hot water tank stores the hot water for a good 12 or 18 hours hot enough for washing dishes. So, it’s only if we run into two or three days of rain that we have to worry about having enough hot water. Yay!
Courtney Brooke: Happy spring.
Zev: Happy spring.