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Solar Heating and Air Conditioning

In Florida, the use of the sun as a source of heating is nothing new. The use of solar domestic hot water heaters is one of the most cost effective ways to heat water. No matter what you’re interested in call Baker & Sons for all of your solar needs if you live in the Sarasota, Florida area.

Solar Hot Water Heaters

Solar hot water heaters come in two types, passive and active. An active system uses pumps and controls to circulate water, while a passive system uses convection to move the hot and cold water through the system. Both systems require a storage tank that is well insulated.

There are several ways to capture the sun's power to heat water. Flat-plate collectors may use radiator-like panels in a weatherproof box or may simply use coils of black pipe. Usually the box has a tempered glass or heat-tolerant panel through which the sun passes. The bottom of the flat-plat collector may be galvanized metal or a dark colored polymer. As the water heats, it is either pumped or circulates into a separate tank for holding.

An integral collector-storage system may use black tanks or black polypipe within insulated glazed boxes to preheat the water before it is delivered to a conventional water heater. Where temperatures never drop below freezing, this is an excellent design.

Evacuated-tube solar collectors are preferred for commercial applications. These collectors are made of rows of glass vacuum tubes with a copper or aluminum fin installed in the middle. In a heat pipe evacuated-tube collector, the pipe contains a specially prepared liquid that boils at lower temperatures than water. As the liquid turns to vapor, it rises to the top of the pipe, transferring its heat to the water flowing through the manifold. Temperatures can rise to the boiling point in these systems, so it is important to have a mixer installed to prevent scalding hot water at the tap.

Solar Powered Air Conditioning

Absorption chiller AC units have been used in Japan and other Asian countries for years because electricity is so expensive. Absorption chillers are dependable and require no harmful CFCs. Often they don't even require any moving parts. If you have ever used a propane refrigerator in a camper or motor home, you have used this technology.

How do absorption chillers work? They work by taking heat to provide the necessary energy to cool a gas that is under pressure. The gas most commonly used is ammonia.

Believe it or not hot water can produce cool air! Using evacuated tube solar thermal panels thermal energy can be transferred to a solar powered chiller via glycol.

Active Solar Heating

Solar energy collectors can also be used to actively heat your home. While air heating systems are beneficial, they are best used to preheat air before it enters the home. The most benefits are experienced when solar heating is used to support a radiant heating system. The working fluid can be water in climates where freezing temperatures aren't common, but antifreeze is the best choice because it does not freeze and absorbs solar heat effectively.

Both flat-plate collectors and evacuated tube collectors work effectively to trap solar heat. The system may be designed to pass through the heat exchanger for immediate use, or be sent to a tank for holding until needed.

Baker & Sons Air Conditioning & Heating recognizes how important it is to use renewable resources to meet our HVAC needs in Florida. We are committed to being on the cutting edge of both residential and commercial applications of solar HVAC solutions. Want to discuss how you can harness the power of the sun for your HVAC needs? Call us today at (941) 377-3602. Find out why Baker & Sons Air Conditioning, Inc. has been the choice for solar heating and cooling in both homes and commercial properties in Sarasota, Manatee and Charlotte Counties for years now.

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