Tips For Maintaining a Solar Hot Water Heater

Posted on: 26 July 2016


Solar hot water heaters allow you to have reliable hot water in your home when you need it without having to pay too much each month on your energy bill. They utilize the sun's UV rays to get natural, renewable energy for the hot water, which allows you to also reduce your carbon footprint. Like other water heaters, a solar hot water heater needs routine maintenance to continue running smoothly.

Check For Leaks

While there are some things you don't need to do until a routine inspection, other things you should look for yourself. Every time you are in the area where the water heater is located, such as the garage or basement, look around the heater for signs of a leak. This is one of the more common issues with solar water heaters and can also be a sign of other problems as well. The easiest way to tell is by seeing a puddle of water around the base of the water heater. If you see a leak, call a technician to have it repaired right away.

Prevent Freezing of the System

Before and during the cold winter season, you need to take a few extra steps to make sure the liquids in the water heater don't freeze. While the piping might currently have good insulation, that is not always enough to prevent freezing when you live somewhere that gets below freezing throughout the winter. The best thing you can do is replace the current heat transfer liquid with an antifreeze solution. If you don't feel confident in doing this, ask a water heater professional, such as those at Greenlogic Solar Energy Systems, to do it for you. You should also drain the piping and collectors periodically to help prevent freezing.

Flush the Water Heater

All hot water heaters need to be flushed routinely, including a solar water heater. There are short and full flushes, depending on your needs and how often you do it. The full flush isn't done as often but does require a few more steps. With a short flush, it is done more frequently and simply involves attaching a hose to the pipe of the water heater, emptying the water, then letting it fill up again. With a full flush, you are following this up with cleaning of the water heater.

Request Inspections

About once a year or so, you will need to call a solar hot water heater technician to inspect the entire system. Unless you have experience with maintenance and repairs, it is best that you hire a professional to handle this. They will check for leaks, look for corrosion, make sure the thermostat is working properly, and look for any repairs that need to be done.