Wood, solar, 500 gallon storage and LP backup

in hot water Posted By in hot water, Aug 28, 2009 at 2:16 AM

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  1. in hot water

    in hot water
    New Member 2.

    Jul 31, 2008
    SW Missouri
    Some changes and upgrades to my wood/ solar/ LP system. I reduced the piping from the "Primary Secondary" sticky above. There are always some trade offs. in the new system I will have to wait till the tank heats before supplying the radiant. But with 500 gallons of storage i can get from 55 to 100F quickly. Using LP or solar will be other options.

    My four collectors took the tank from 76 to 106 with hazy skies yesterday, still insulating the storage and will have 6-8" of foam and some bubble wrap on it.

    I was able to make piping changes, even at the bottom without draining the tank, moving quickly before it could inhale a gulp of air!

    Most of the taps on the LP tank were out of plumb so swing ells on every connection. Some of those top connections actually have dip tubes welded, be aware of that when you connect into tanks. I removed the float gauge and used it for another connection point.

    I strapped some copper wells on the bottom connection for "cold point" monitoring. This is where the solar will get it's signal, and the boiler loop circ.

    The circs will all be Grundfos Alphas and the boiler loop will be run on a delta T to assure boiler return protection.

    Currently the radiant pulls from the HTP Phoenix via a DHW HX, not shown. It will have an outdoor reset controlled mixing pump at the 500 gallon tank to go directly to the radiant, or via the LP fired Phoenix.

    Controls will be solar differential and setpoint, fairly simple off the shelf stuff.


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  2. brad068

    Feeling the Heat 2.

    Nov 20, 2007
    Central Wisconsin
    I'm going to post some pics of my solar install soon. I finally got my 4,4x10' panels hooked up and heating my homebuilt garn style boiler. They are heating @1300 gals. of water. Transfer is through a 30 plate with a Caleffi solar controller running the two pumps. It is the electronic speed control unit and it seems to be working well. It took about 2.5-3 days to get the water from 56*F to 135*F. I found a old digital timer that I had in a drawer and use it on my circ going to the house. It kicks on from 5-7am and on from 8-10pm. high demand times for hot water. It will be on constant when fall/winter gets here.
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