Building Science: Taking another look at solar hot water

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So why solar hot water in the U.S., anyway? Many homeowners have little clue about how their water is heated, its contribution to their energy bill or the alternatives available.

Housing Zone

So why solar hot water in the U.S., anyway? Many homeowners have little clue about how their water is heated, its contribution to their energy bill or the alternatives available. Oftentimes, it is an afterthought during a home renovation project, somewhere down on the priority list after choosing the color of the bathroom tile grout. So let’s start with some basic facts.

Water heating consumes 18 percent of the energy used in American homes and is the second largest energy consumer behind space heating.That is more energy used than powering all of a home’s lights, computers, refrigerators, TVs, Xboxes and other electronic gadgets combined. Residential water heating amounts to $34 billion in annual expense and 162 million metric tons of CO2 emissions.

 

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