A solar water heater collects solar energy directly from the sun and converts it into an energy source that heats the water and can be used in bath areas. Solar water heaters can be the perfect source of renewable energy, especially in a region like Tamil Nadu.
The solar water heating system consists of several units, including a solar panel, a tank to store the water, and a mechanical pump to circulate the water. The solar water heater should be freeze-proof and capable of shutting off in the case of overheating in the tank.
There are two types of solar water heater panels: The flat panel and the evacuated tube model. The flat panel model collects heat from the sun with a flat plate-like structure, which is connected to pipes containing fluids to heat water. Evacuated tube Collector (ETC) model is designed to reduce heat loss; it has two concentric glass tubes with a vacuum that holds the solar heat, which can even be used in the absence of solar energy . ETC models are way more efficient than flat panels, but in cases of consistent availability of solar energy, flat panels can be preferred as they are more economical compared to ETC.
The most basic solar water heater starts at 15,000 rupees for 100 litres/day and the range varies depending on the capacity and the technology adopted in the particular water heater.
The main advantage of a solar water heater is that it promotes a clean and healthy environment, saves heavy electricity costs, and reduces carbon footprint. It works well in the long run, plus you get tax benefits. It is always better to switch over to non-exhaustible resources as an environmentally responsible individual.