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Old 26-04-2014, 19:21   #16
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Re: Spare Solar Power Used to Heat Hot Water

> How about just putting a solar shower bag in the sun?
>...
> Is this really a problem you want to throw a lot of money at?

Not a problem at all. The OP wasn't talking about how to heat water. He was looking at ways of utilising that excess available energy from the existing solar panels.
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Old 26-04-2014, 20:12   #17
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Re: Spare Solar Power Used to Heat Hot Water

In 4 years of Cruising Mexico we took zero hot/warm showers aboard the boat nor did we ever open up the engine cooling loop to our hot water heater. Cold showers were as welcomed in the hot climates...
We did have a solar shower and gave it away...my goal in where I cruise is that I don't NEED a hot water tank!
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Old 28-04-2014, 18:55   #18
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Re: Spare Solar Power Used to Heat Hot Water

I disagree.

Sweat rinses off better in hot water, and the hot water was available whenever we wanted it.

You can always turn on a fan...we had 6 of them.
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Old 28-04-2014, 19:03   #19
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Re: Spare Solar Power Used to Heat Hot Water

Disagree that I didn't take a hot shower in 4yrs of cruising Mexico?
I know what you mean...just being a smart ass (agian)

Actually that would be the cruisers without a water maker that have long ago lost their sense of smell for BO....

The problem I see with using Wind or Solar to make hot water with 12v power is that the vast majority of the Cruising Boat I cruised and anchored next to barely had enough 12v power to keep up with the every-day loads and wouldn't have been able to power their hot water heater off of "extra power", nor could their already over-taxed battery bank support it. With my new LiOn battery bank that's being installed I might have a chance...but at $1700 for the 400AH bank...that could buy an aweful lot of diesel or gas for the generator to make hot water.
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Old 28-04-2014, 19:58   #20
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Re: Spare Solar Power Used to Heat Hot Water

I use the extra solar aboard to make water. I have a black solar mat that circulates water through it into the hot water tank, I put it on deck on sunny days, it has a small solar panel that runs a tiny pump and will over a sunny NW day heat 10 gals of water.....
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Old 29-04-2014, 19:57   #21
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Re: Spare Solar Power Used to Heat Hot Water

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Originally Posted by nwdiver View Post
I use the extra solar aboard to make water. I have a black solar mat that circulates water through it into the hot water tank, I put it on deck on sunny days, it has a small solar panel that runs a tiny pump and will over a sunny NW day heat 10 gals of water.....

Do you have a picture of your set up?
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Old 29-04-2014, 22:02   #22
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Re: Spare Solar Power Used to Heat Hot Water

i use 2 3ft by 2ft by 3in stainless tanks on my deck, give it a couple hours and HOT water.
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Old 04-05-2014, 16:27   #23
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Re: Spare Solar Power Used to Heat Hot Water

I am aware this thread is about using the extra solar electric panel's energy to heat water, but for those interested in alternative solar heating methods, like the black garden hose coiled on deck...loved that one, there is another neat little inexpensive system available that is relatively unknown that I plan to give a try. It's made by Heliatos. They make small solar water panels (2'x2') that use a constantly circulating loop of water (that you can plumb through your water tank). The circulating water is controlled by a small pump with it's own stand alone "small" 10 watt solar electrical panel. The dual water panel kit is a little over $500 bucks. (They probably don't charge enough since it's "for a boat"...Ha!) That's the one I may try as I only have a 6 gallon water heater onboard. I haven't done any calculations on heating my 6 gallons, but I am hoping to be able to get by with only one panel...don't know. Anyway, the Heliatos is an automatic system. The sun comes up, the little stand-alone 10 watt solar panel makes electricity and starts the pump circulating water. The sun goes down...solar panel quits, the pump stops. There are no on/off switches, or electrical connections to the boat system at all---simple.

You can check out the marine kit versions of this system here >> Heliatos Solar. Scroll to the bottom of the webpage for the boat versions and kits.
I do not have any affiliation with the company.
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Old 07-05-2014, 05:23   #24
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Re: Spare Solar Power Used to Heat Hot Water

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Originally Posted by Chasing Summer View Post
Don't know where you call home or do your cruising but if you have sunshine a simple 50 foot black garden hose coil makes a perfect solar water heater. Use the 'extra' power from your panels to run a circulation pump. Even in cooler climates black can get quite warm.
I fitted on my roof at home coils of black poly pipe and made my pool pump push the pool water up into the black poly pipe on the roof of the house and back to the return on the pool it heat my 24000 gallon pool three days in southern Australia at the start of spring sun shine .
I am going to fit a water cool fridge compressor and will store the heated water for showers and add more heat either via a heat exchanger on the diesel motor and or what you are saying coled pipe on the deck of the boat ( when I'm moored in a quiet spot)
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Old 07-05-2014, 09:23   #25
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Re: Spare Solar Power Used to Heat Hot Water

That could work well. The hot water tank is under the rear berth and we have a Bimini roughly above it.

How much pipe are we talking? Just thinking I could run a length around the Bimini a few times and then install a small pump next to the hot water tank. On sunny days just turn this pump on and it should pass the heated water back into the tank?
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Old 07-05-2014, 20:31   #26
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Re: Spare Solar Power Used to Heat Hot Water

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Originally Posted by simonpickard View Post
That could work well. The hot water tank is under the rear berth and we have a Bimini roughly above it.

How much pipe are we talking? Just thinking I could run a length around the Bimini a few times and then install a small pump next to the hot water tank. On sunny days just turn this pump on and it should pass the heated water back into the tank?
I'd use Water cooling pump off a computer there 12volt and a coil of small diameter. Black Polly hose coiled on a bimini
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