About

My blog is for anyone interested in topics on alternative energy.  I reserve the right to mostly talk about solar thermal issues.  However, you may also find that I will address passive solar topics, solar electricity, Electric Vehicles, Fuel cells, Wind, Micro-Hydro, policy, technical issues and anything else that has to do with alternative energy.

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2 Responses to About

  1. mike says:

    I was interested to read your views on the use of Glycol in solar thermal systems. I’ve just installed my own evacuated tube system and during my research I saw one view expressed that advocated using water only in such a system as mine. The reason given was that since the manifold was heavily insulated and if the pipework to the manifold was the customary insulated stainless type, then provided all exposed pipes etc. were covered, then a glycol mix was unneccesary. This may be a risky stragegy and in the end I opted for the usual Solar supplier glycol premix. Pehaps there is a case for using better insulated pipework on such systems as mine using water and dispensing with the glycol. Do you have any views?
    Kind regards, Mike

  2. Mike,
    I’m guessing that you are in the UK. Using a Propylene Glycol mix was the right move. Only in climates that do not have regular freezing temperatures should you not use glycol. Even those climates can get occasional freezing temperatures. To keep the pipes from freezing, most solar controllers have a setting that will turn on the pump at night to warm up the pipes. This method is not recommended for climates such as the UK.

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