Is there an update on your demo house solar air heater?
Have you collected enough data since completing the latest demo home with the pre fab house on a Legalett air heated slab foundation to do an analysis of its effectiveness? I'm wondering what the numbers are on using the solar air heated collector to provide supplemental heat for the in floor heating system Legalett is known for. My question is does the extra cost of adding the solar air collector and additional cost for added piping and installation of the adapted Legalett heating system cost effective? Would the added cost of this add on system be more cost effective if same amount of money was put towards PV solar? Wouldn't the collected power from PV be more beneficial if it can cover the equivalent heat units collected by the Air Solar Panel, possibly power the Legalett in floor heating system, and also provide power to heat domestic hot water?
The solar air heating panels on our new demo house have unfortunately not arrived yet! We are told about a month, so hopefully we will see them up by Christmas, that would be a nice gift. When done, we hope that our Solar Air Heated Floor (see video here) will provide in the area of 70% of the heat load, but until they are installed it’s still hard to know.
We will for sure send out a celebratory email when everything is up and running, so if you aren’t already an Ecohome member you can sign up here if you like, or check back on the latest posts, an update will for sure be posted there.
To address your other questions, while we don't have data to support it, there is really no way that the same amount of money invested in PV panels could possibly compete with the low cost of solar air heating panels and deliver the same amount of BTUs for the same price. Thermal solar air heating panels such as this are really low tech; you are talking about blowing air through a black box, not generating power. That is what is really exciting to us about this, we are pretty convinced that the heat this provides will be well worth the cost of the system. We just don't see that being the case with PV panels. But, we will know soon enough...
Thanks for checking in Dean, we’re pretty jazzed up about getting that going, nice to know others are interested too!
It's been over a year; any updates on the solar air panels for the air heated floors?