A solar heater for your home is like the electric motor is to a hybrid vehicle. Used in conjunction with your existing heating system (oil, gas, wood pellets, wood, dilithium crystals, etc) it will decrease your fuel consumption by as much as 30%. Using solar thermal technology, a solar air heater produces heat during the day so your heating system doesn't have to kick on so often. It's automatic, requires no cleaning, essentially no maintenance and you'll recoup your investment in just 3 to 6 years by offsetting your fuel costs.Read more +
The sun provides heat all year round, so why not use solar in the winter too! Solar air heating can supplement your regular heating system and can dramatically reduce your heating costs. Air in your home is circulated through a collector on the exterior wall where it can gain up to 30 degrees before being vented back into the room. These 4'x 8' collectors look like large doors and should be mounted on a sunny south facing wall or roof.
The collectors weigh about 100 pounds so be sure to have a friend help you with the installation. Yes, you will need to cut two holes (about 5" diameter) in the exterior walls. On a sunny day, the air heater will produce heat which will be stored in the furniture, rugs, curtains, etc. (We call that "thermal mass.") That heat will be dissipated throughout the evening. One collector is recommended to heat about 750 square feet and will typically last 25-30 years! You may need to replace the fan during that time.
What's the difference between air heaters? Both the SunMate and the Solarsheat are SRCC certified. The Solar Rating and Certification Corporation independently tests and publishes the performance data of solar collectors. As you are exploring your options, you'll notice one main difference between the two types of recirculating air heaters we offer: the source that powers the fan. Some air heaters (like the Environmental Solar Systems SunMate Wall Mount Package) have a fan unit that plugs right into the wall. Other collectors (like the Your Solar Home 1500G Glazed Solar Air Heater) have an integrated solar electric panel that powers the fan - no need to plug it in the wall at all! Best of all solar air heating units are relatively straight forward to understand and can be installed by a contractor or a handy person in less than a day. Be sure to read the installation manuals of each before purchasing. The manual can be found under the Product Documentation tab of the product specification page. To learn more about the benefits of this beautifully simple system, please consult our guide in the How To section or visit us in Massachusetts for classes on air heating.