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Homemade DIY Panels

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Posted by Benign Vanilla on April 30, 2004, 7:13 pm
I don't see many posts on DIY Panels. I am wondering why? It occurs to me,
but I am an admitted gadget geek, that with some copper tubing, some black
paint, some insulation and some pressure treated lumber, you could make a
relatively cheap and probably pretty efficient panel. I realize the
efficiency would not be as great as professional system, but how much worse
could it be? Am I just missing the plethora of DIY'ers out there or is this
not feasable?


Posted by Ecnerwal on April 30, 2004, 7:22 pm

The lumber is a bad idea. Stagnation temperatures (when you have sun,
but the storage is full, or the pump is broken) can ignite wood.

Paint is not as good as selective surface treatments, which are
difficult to replicate on a home scale. You can build them, but the
hassle is not worth it for many people (at least for domestic hot water
collectors - air collectors and pool water heaters are easier/simpler).

Cats, Coffee, Chocolate...vices to live by

Posted by SQLit on April 30, 2004, 11:22 pm

I thought the same thing. Built a collector for my spa. Barely worked, never
really helped at all. Then I bought a home with a real collector. WOW, what
a difference. I figured that it provided 70-80% of all my hot water needs

Posted by nicksanspam on May 1, 2004, 10:07 am

Could be a lot worse :-)

It looks like there's a missing piece in your list. How would you get
solar heat into the tubing? The usual way involves some sort of dark
metal fin with a high thermal conductance attachment to the tubing.


Posted by LarenCorie on May 2, 2004, 2:48 am

  If he is expecting any high temperature, as is expressed by his
mention of "insulation" he is going to need some sort of glazing, too.

-Laren Corie-

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