How energy efficient is solar water heater than an electric water heater?

Of late, the solar water heater is gaining publicity with people understanding the benefits of installing a solar water heater at home. A solar water heater uses solar energy for heating water and does not use electricity at any point for the subject purpose. This implies that your annual electricity bill will reduce substantially, as it does not include the electricity consumed for heating of water.

Solar energy is renewable, non-polluting, nature-friendly, and cost-effective. The power production costs incurred by the government also comes down with more people turning to solar energy and solar-powered systems. Therefore, the state and central governments offer subsidies and rebates for installing solar power systems.

Earlier the consumers were apprehensive of the usability and complications with respect to solar power systems. Leading to a reduction in sales of subject systems. Awareness programs by the Ministry of New and Renewable Energy and government/ non-government organizations have been effective in clarifying such issues. Besides the aforesaid, the budget-friendly aspect of solar water heaters has been instrumental in the rise in the number of people opting for the same.

Types of Solar Water Heaters 

There are two types of solar water heaters. Both the type has been made of different materials and the process of heating also differs. These are Flat Plate Collectors (FPC) and Evacuated Tube Collectors (ETC). Certain manufacturers make both types, whereas some specialize in one type of solar water heater. Checking out both and deciding depending on your requirement would be ideal. 

Flat Plate Collectors – This type of solar heater is metallic and hence strong. The basic construction consists of a metallic box with a black coated copper sheet covered with glass. The glass is toughened to withstand tensile and stress loads. The copper sheet has heat-absorbing qualities, which has been amplified with the black coating. 

There are copper tubes installed vertically inside the box. Those connect with the horizontal header pipes. The water that enters the metallic box through the lower pipes travels to the vertical pipes and is heated there. With the rise in temperature, the water travels upwards and collects in the storage tank. 

Evacuated Tube Collectors – Installed with two coaxial glass tubes, the vacuum created between the tubes acts as an insulator. A coating is provided towards ensuring better heat absorption. The water gets heated up due to sunlight and rises to collect in the storage tank. 

This type of solar water heater is made of glass. Hence, it is fragile. You can say it as the drawback of ETC type heaters. Consulting with the professionals in the solar water heater manufacturing and servicing field can give you a better idea about the type of solar water heater suitable for your home. 

The Pros and Cons of Both Types of Solar Water Heaters

 As nothing is perfect in this world, both the types of solar water heaters have drawbacks and positives. Deciding which one to buy for your home will depend on your choices and selection. The pros and cons of both Flat Plate Collector (FPC) and Evacuated Tube Collector (ETC) solar water heaters are tabulated below. 




Flat Plate Collectors (FPC)

Stronger than ETC

Costlier than ETC

Better longevity

Require to add anti-freezing additives in colder regions

Ideal for homes

Heat exchanger is necessary if the water is salty




Evacuated Tube Collectors (ETC)

Cheaper than FPC


Very good at colder regions

Frequent cleaning required, to remove salt deposits/ scaling

Savings on Solar Water Heater compared to Electric Water Heater

As solar water heaters do not require electricity you do not have to spend any amount towards energy charges. Thus saving a substantial amount in yearly electrical costs for you. In case you use 100 litres a day, the solar water heaters save at least 1500 units of electrical energy a year. You may calculate the average saving based on your daily/ yearly requirement of hot water depending on the area you reside in. 

The hot water consumption would be more in case you are located in the colder regions. Besides, the country faces an acute shortage of electricity and resorts to load shedding frequently to meet power needs. The solar water heater is a blessing during such conditions. The hot water collected in the collector tank could be used when the requirement arises. The coated water tank will maintain the temperature of the water for a longer duration than normal tanks. 

 With the one-time investment in the solar water heater, you will be saving money and energy for your entire life. Therefore, investing in a solar water heater will be the best decision. 

 The solar water heater is energy efficient than an electric water heater in many ways. You must purchase a solar water heater from a reputed manufacturer. So that you do not have to be concerned about the installation and maintenance requirements. Most of the established solar system manufacturers provide free installation and extended warranties. Hence, resolving all such worries for customers. 

Hykon India Limited

Hykon India Limited has been the leading manufacturers of reliable and long-lasting solar water heaters since long. Hykon has been the most dependable firm delivering different electrical and electronic systems since inception in 1991. The unparalleled experience and expertise for three decades have made Hykon the best in the field.

Certified with ISO 9001 for quality and credibility, Hykon remains the most trusted brand in solar water heaters. You may contact us for knowing more about the solar water heaters and installing one at home. 

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