Using solar energy to provide hot water is one way that home owners can significantly reduced their energy bills. That been the experience of Russ Krug, of "Heating World," who has been using a Nature's Comfort domestic solar hot water heater for the past year to provide most of the hot water for his home.
Proper placement and connecting the unit is all it takes for sun to take over the job of providing a steady supply of hot water. During the day, the 100 gallons of water can be heated to between 180 to 200 degrees by the sun alone.
The solar water heater relies on gravity and sunlight and requires no other energy source to provide almost all of the hot water a home, small farm or business in this region would need between mid April and mid October.
Even in the cold winter months, the German designed but American manufactured solar heater can still cut a home's hot water bills by 20 to 30 percent according to people who have used the equipment.
Solar water heaters have become extremely popular in Europe and other parts of the U.S. as a way to significantly reduce a home's over all energy consumption.
While the purchase and installation of a system can run about $3000, there can be a significant long term pay back that goes beyond the environmental goal of reducing energy consumption.
Hot water for showering, doing the laundry and other household uses is estimated to cost about $150 per person per household per year. That's why a system that cuts those expenses way back should be able to save the homeowner from $500 to $1000 a year.
One other factor that makes solar hot water heaters attractive from a financial standpoint is a federal tax credit available for at least the next four years that will cover 30 percent of the cost of a system.