4 Orchard Road Marlborough
Solar thermal technology
This system integrates the heat gained from three solar panels on the roof of my house with cheap electricity to power a boiler. It takes advantage of the 'Economy 10' tariff which provides half-price electricity for 10 hours per day: between midnight and 5am; between 1 and 4pm and between 8 and 10pm. The 'Thermaflow' boiler has an efficiency rating of 99.4%.
The system is centred on a 330 litre, stainless steel, insulated tank/boiler that is situated in the loft and connected to both the central heating system and a heat exchanger which supplies mains pressure hot water. During the summer months at least 80% of our hot water is heated for free by the sun. During the cold winter months there is only sufficient sun power to take the chill off the water in the tank, while the rest of the power is supplied by four heating elements. These heating elements are timed to switch on during the half-price electricity periods, the hot water is then circulated in the central heating system during the day, mainly in the morning and the evening.
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