DIY-ers will be happy to hear that a solar hot water system with simplified installation has hit the market.
The Liberty-Box has been developed without the extra pipes, pumps and holding containers that were traditionally needed to adapt pre-existing water heaters.
From Derek Markham of TreeHugger: “The Liberty Box, from EDS USA, uses the electricity generated from several photovoltaic solar panels to heat a second heater element in an existing water heater, instead of heating the water in secondary thermal collectors. The system is said to be able to provide 100% of the hot water needs of a family of four in the summer time, and 75% of the water heating demand for the winter time, with no batteries needed, no chance of pipes freezing or leaking, and no moving pieces (such as pumps) vulnerable to breakage or failure.”
The upfront cost? $4,000 for kits that include solar panels, or $1,000 for kits without them. (Though, the system does qualify for a 30% Federal Tax Credit, and there may be incentives in your state, county, or city that it also qualifies for.)
For more info on the kit, check out the Liberty Box brochure from EDS USA.
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