Solar Powered Solar Air Heater
Zero running cost solar air heater
This Solar Air Heater is an automated solar heating system. It warms your home with no mains power and zero running costs.
The solar collector can be roof or wall mounted for optimal performance in winter. The circulation fan is powered by an in-built solar photovoltaic panel, so no mains power is needed to operate the unit. It's 100% solar powered.
How do they work?
Solar Air Heater Features
Multiple air-flow design - This is not just a simple flat plate collector: fresh outside air makes three passes through the collector before entering the room (see diagram above).
Air flow control - Air can be brought in from outside, or re-circulated from inside to maximise the temperature gain.
Self-powered - The inbuilt solar PV panel is sized to drive the in-built energy efficient circulation fans.
Thermostat control - The unit comes with basic wiring and a thermostat which can be used to control indoor air temperature if desired. You can also leave it out if you prefer a simple set-up.
Summer mode - In summer, you can close the hot air outlet and keep the warm inside air intake operating, which will then remove warm air from your home to outside.
Ducting and accessories - The unit comes with a short run of ducting suitable for 'through wall' installation. An internal air diffuser and other connectors are also included. For roof-top installation we can supply additional ducting or you can source this locally from a hardware store.
Specifications - Solar Air Heater
There are two models to choose from:
|Size||66 x 105 x 8 cm||95 x 140 x 8 cm|
|Area||0.7 m2||1.33 m2|
|Weight||15 kg||29 kg|
|Heat Output||~250 Watts||~500 Watts|
|Solar PV Fan||14 Watts||20 Watts|
|Fan (max)||105 m³/h||120 m³/h|
What's in the box?
The prices on this page include the following parts and accessories (pictured below):
- 1 x Solar Air Heater
- 2 x Circulation Fans (one is pre-installed inside the unit, the other can be added as an option if you wish to re-circulate internal air)
- 1 x Thermostat Controller
- 2 x Short runs (approx 0.5m) of flexible ducting (100mm diameter). Length is suitable for through-wall installation. If you are ducting a few metres in a roof cavity you will need to purchase some extra ducting.
- 2 x Flange to connect ducting to solar air heater
- 2 x Diffuser plate including insect guard to connect the ducting and act as internal wall / ceiling outlet (for 100mm cut-out size)
- 1 x Pack of mounting screws
For best performance the solar air heater should be installed on an external wall of roof (north or west facing). Installation is relatively simple and can be self installed (wall installation) or by a suitably qualified contractor.
Solar hot water installers, solar photovoltaic installers and those who install roof mounted ventilation systems such as 'whirly bids' would all have sufficient expertise to install these solar air heaters. It's simply a matter of mounting the unit and ducting it through to the relevant location.
Installation cost will vary depending on the complexity of your installation. For simple/regular installations expect to pay $500 to $1,000.
Frequently Asked Questions
Details about Delivery and 10 Year Warranty
This item is delivered via road freight courier. Follow the delivery information link for further information about delivery.
The manufacturer offers a 10 Year Warranty on the product. The circulation fans are warrantied for 40,000 hours of operation, which is more than 10 years.
Does it work at night?
No, the solar air heater only works during the day. It does not store heat or energy at night. There are no batteries involved. Air is heated directly by the sun in the collector and pushed into the house by two fans. Those fans are powered by a photovoltaic (solar) panel, and it too will stop working when the sun goes down. So at night, no more air from the solar air heater will pass into the house. The purpose of the solar air heater is to raise the indoor temperature by a few degrees during the day so that there is less need to use other heaters.
Can I hear some feedback from an existing customer?
Yes - one of our customers has written a detailed review. You can read it here.
Does it need any mains power?
No - it is 100% solar powered. The fans are powered by an in-built solar PV panel.
How many units will I need? Which size?
The effectiveness of solar air heating depends on many factors, including how well sealed and insulated your home is. There are no hard and fast rules, but you may like to use the following as a guide:
- Make sure your home is relatively well sealed and insulated first (ceiling insulation and no major gaps around windows and doors is a good start).
- We suggest installing the solar air heaters close to where they are needed. If you want to heat both your bedrooms and the living area you should install one unit close to each of those areas. This minimises the amount of ducting required and therefore increases system performance.
- One 'Small' sized unit will generally be suitable for relatively small areas up to around 25m2 (one room). One 'Large' unit could service larger living areas up to around 50m2.
Will it work in my particularly cold climate? (Tasmania, Southern Highlands, etc)
Yes. The best way to deal with very cold outdoor air temperatures is not to use outdoor air. You will see on the diagram in the overview section that the unit has the option to re-circulate internal air. This gets much better performance as you are re-heating already warm air. This does however require two ducts (one inlet and one outlet). All the duct hardware, such as diffuser grills, are supplied with the unit.
Will I still require another heater?
The short answer is "yes, you will most likely still need another heater." Multiple days of cold, cloudy and rainy weather will severely limit the functionality of the solar air heater.
The good news is that a well designed solar air heating system could meet more than half of your heating needs. You can think of it in a similar way to solar hot water. Solar hot water systems still require a gas or electric 'booster' during multiple days of bad weather.
What temperature increase can I expect indoors?
Again, this will depend on many factors, but you can expect an increase of 10˚ to 20˚ compared to the intake air temperature. So if the outside temperature is 10˚ the indoor outlet air temperature should be around 25˚.
Don't forget that you can duct the intake air from indoors as well. Doing so will greatly improve the performance of your system as indoor temperatures are likely to already be much higher than outside.
Can I come and see one before I purchase?
Yes - but inspection of the product can only be arranged by appointment at the warehouse (near Altona in Melbourne). Contact us for details. If you live outside of Melbourne please contact us - most questions can be answered alongside the information and pictures on this page.
Can I pick up the unit?
Yes - see previous answer (only in Melbourne).