The main roles of solar thermal panels are to heat a home and / or produce hot water. However, are they enough to make a home independent?
Solar thermal panels, to produce hot water
The main mission of solar thermal panels (or solar thermal collectors) is to provide hot water to a house. Placed on the roof, the hot water supply is through a heat transfer fluid that stores and routes the calories to the solar water heater (monobloc, separate elements or combined). The solar energy captured during the day is stored as hot water in a balloon.
It is estimated that about 60% of the coverage rate of daily hot water needs. That's why, even in times of sunshine, thermal solar panels do not fully meet the needs. It is therefore essential to provide a backup system to overcome this problem by connecting, for example the solar water heater to an electric water heater. Its dependence on the sun makes this equipment an inefficient system in the northern part of France. On the other hand, it is widely democratized in the overseas regions.
Solar thermal panels, to heat your house
It is possible to heat your home with solar thermal panels by respecting some preconditions. Indeed, the solar system combined (SSC) can supply the heating floors and radiators of the house. It allows to replace the boiler.
However, to meet the daily needs perfectly, it is necessary that the surface of the roof is consequent. A area of 20m2 can heat a family of 5 people. Sizing is an important step: if the surface is too small, the house will be poorly heated. On the other hand, too large a surface may overheat the home, especially in summer.
However, it is necessary to provide additional heating for the colder months because the sunshine random does not predict the energy supplied. Indeed, this equipment allows an almost solar autonomy from April to October.
As a bonus, it is also possible to heat a pool thanks to solar thermal panels.