Gas or Electric? Heat Pump or Solar?
What hotwater system is best?
Did you know that an Electric hot water system can make up 30% of your power bill? Few people do… Never the less it is true that the simple luxury of hot water can cost you big, even if it is on the off-peak tariff.
Gas hot water is not much better to be honest… The cost of your hot water wont be added onto your power bill, instead you will be getting a gas bill! And unless you have mains gas running to your property you will have to remain on alert ready for when the gas bottle runs out mid shower on a cold winters morning where all of a sudden you find yourself dashing outside in a towel to switch the bottles over. (I know this from experience living in my old house)
So solar hot water is the best then?
Not exactly, while solar hot water will indeed save you money on your power bill it is not really the best way to utilise your roof space. Unfortunately, a dedicated solar hot water system can be very costly and obviously only heats your hot water…
It actually makes the most sense to have and typical Electric hot water storage system and have a standard solar system on your roof that powers your entire home. What we like to do is remove the off-peak meters and install a timer in your switchboard that will turn your solar on during the day. This essentially turns your hot water into a “Solar Hot Water” with a few added benefits:
- Excess power not being used by your hot water can be utilised elsewhere in your house or even sent back to the grid for a credit!
- During a cloudy day or periods of poor weather, your hot water will still heat during the day using power from the grid.
- Fewer things to go wrong: If you happen to have both solar and solar hot water these are 2 completely separate systems that will each carry their own warranties to worry about.
These timers are a super simple way to ensure that you are utilising your solar in the best possible way. It is literally “Set and Forget” once installed you will have the peace of mind knowing that your hot water is not costing you a cent!