How do solar panels heat my hot water?

solar panels heat hot water

Solar panels and hot water systems.

Using solar panels to heat your hot water is a cheap and environmentally friendly option for homes and businesses across Sydney.

With rising gas and electricity prices, the expensive cost of living, and the need to reduce our carbon footprint, we are often asked how people can use rooftop solar to heat their hot water.

solar panels heat hot water
The diagram above explains how solar panels harness the sun’s energy to create electricity that can be used to heat hot water in your home or business.

How do solar panels work and how do they heat hot water?

Commonly called solar panels, photovoltaic collectors or solar photovoltaic (PV), are devices that convert sunlight into electricity.  By converting the sun’s energy into solPV collectors can be used to harness the sun’s energy to run various appliances in our homes and workplaces.

Photovoltaic Cells

Photovoltaic cells (or solar cells) are the basic building blocks of photovoltaic collectors. They are made of semiconductor materials, typically silicon.

When sunlight hits these cells, it ‘excites’ electrons, creating an electric current. This process is based on the photovoltaic effect, where certain materials generate an electric current in response to light exposure.

Solar Panels

The solar cells are connected and encapsulated within a larger structure called a solar panel or solar module.

The solar panels are designed to protect the cells from environmental factors and to maximise sunlight absorption.

Solar panels are made up of multiple individual solar cells arranged in a grid-like pattern.

Solar Inverter

The direct current (DC) electricity produced by solar panels is then fed into an inverter, which converts it into alternating current (AC) electricity.

Most homes and businesses in Australia use AC electricity, which is the standard type of electrical power supplied by appliances and utilities.

Utility Grid or Storage

The converted AC electricity can then be used to power electrical appliances and utilities in the home and workplace.

If the solar system produces more electricity than is immediately needed, the excess can be fed back into the electricity grid.  Alternatively, the excess energy can be stored in batteries for later use if the system is equipped with energy storage capabilities.

using solar panels heat hot water

Why are solar panels environmentally friendly?

Solar panels or solar photovoltaic (PV) are environmentally friendly because they generate electricity without emitting greenhouse gases or other pollutants.

Solar is a sustainable source of energy and plays a significant role in the transition toward clean and renewable energy sources.

More information about using solar to heat hot water

Want to switch to solar electricity?

Solar hot water is our business!  In conjunction with our specialist solar electricians, we are licensed solar system installers and repair technicians. Contact our experience team for obligation-free advice about the switching to solar electricity and utilising the sun to heat your hot water, and reduce your electricity bills and your carbon footprint today.