When installing a solar heat system, there are two types of solar heat panels which can be used: evacuated tube panels and flat plate panels. Evacuated tube solar heat panels are a newer technology which is utilized in many new installations today. Does newer technology always mean better? Below, we will discuss evacuated tube solar heat panels so you can decide for yourself.
Evacuated tube solar heat panels:
- Collect sunlight better due to their greater exposed surface area
- Transfer heat more efficiently than flat plate solar heat panels
- Are able to be used for applications where temperatures fall below 0 degrees
- Perform well even in less-than-ideal weather conditions
- Take up less space
In general, evacuated tube solar heat panels are more efficient than flat plate collectors. Evacuated tube panel technology is newer, so the price of components is higher than with flat plate panels. While they cost more initially, they are very durable and replacing broken tubes can be done easily and affordably. Repairs for flat plate panels can be more expensive if needed.
When determining which type of solar heat panel is right for an application, we have to consider the temperature of water in the storage tank as well as the outdoor temperature. Flat plate collectors are more efficient than evacuated tube solar heat panels when there isn’t much temperature variance. On the other hand, evacuated tube solar heat panels offer increased efficiency when the temperature variances increase, making them ideal for use in colder temperatures.
Though evacuated tube solar heat panels are becoming the preferred choice, there are many applications where flat plate solar heat panels are still the best choice, including:
- Housing and dormitories, such as for colleges, the military, correctional facilities, hospitals, and nursing homes
- Car Washes
Smith Sustainable Design will determine which panel type is right for your application, and answer any questions you may have about the equipment we recommend. Call us today to schedule your consultation.