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Solar evacuated tube panel system question

  • 11-04-2021 11:29pm
    #1
    Registered Users Posts: 2,493 ✭✭✭ Car99


    Hi.

    I need some assistance regarding an installed solar panel system. Sorry this is long winded but if you get to the end thanks for taking the time.

    My father inlaw had a solar hot water system put in to his old house by energycenter.ie about 4 years ago. For the last couple of months he said the overflow pipe in his facia has been spilling out water during the night at some stage. He asked me have a look.

    I located the normal household water system header tank in the attic and I also found a smaller header tank with a water feed and ballcock for I presume the solar system .
    There is a plastic 20mm pipe feeding/ returning water into the top of the solar header tank. This pipe is warm to touch and the water in the solar header tank is also warm and quite murky looking.
    The overflow from the solar tank is set up to flow into the normal household water header tank . While I was looking there was a constant drip of water from the solar header tank into the normal header tank.
    I'm thinking that because the water level in the normal header tank is up and down with household useage all day there is no overflow then at night the overflow from the solar header into the normal header tank is causing the overflow from the facia pipe during the night.

    My question is , if I adjust the balcock in the solar header to keep the water an inch below the overflow would that solve the problem?
    Could there be another reason that the solar header tank is over filling rather than a badly adjusted balcock? Where could water be returning from into the solar header tank?

    On a side note is it normal practice to route the overflow from a murky warm solar header tank through the existing household water system header tank ?


Comments

  • Registered Users Posts: 2,737 ✭✭✭ graememk


    I thought solar tubes were sealed systems under pressure?

    Are you sure the header tank is for the solar not the heating system.

    Although for that to be outflowing to the main tank would be unusual, as I'd say normally it's the other way around.
    In my house the main house tank over flows into the heating tank and that over flows into the overflow out of the house.

    The ballcock would most likely just need replacing as there usually isn't much adjustment on them.


  • Registered Users Posts: 2,493 ✭✭✭ Car99


    graememk wrote: »
    I thought solar tubes were sealed systems under pressure?

    Are you sure the header tank is for the solar not the heating system.

    Although for that to be outflowing to the main tank would be unusual, as I'd say normally it's the other way around.
    In my house the main house tank over flows into the heating tank and that over flows into the overflow out of the house.

    The ballcock would most likely just need replacing as there usually isn't much adjustment on them.

    That makes more sense. The balcock in the small tank is shutting off completely though so I must have another reason for the small header tank over filling.


  • Registered Users Posts: 1,246 ✭✭✭ dathi


    Car99 wrote: »
    Hi.



    (1)
    There is a plastic 20mm pipe feeding/ returning water into the top of the solar header tank. This pipe is warm to touch and the water in the solar header tank is also warm and quite murky looking.




    (2)
    On a side note is it normal practice to route the overflow from a murky warm solar header tank through the existing household water system header tank ?

    (1)this small tank has nothing to do with your solar it is your central heating top up tank the fact that the water is warm in this tank could indicate that the system is "pitching" if you google you will see its where the pump pushes hot water into the tank
    (2) its lazy practice to route the overflow that way


  • Registered Users Posts: 2,493 ✭✭✭ Car99


    dathi wrote: »
    (1)this small tank has nothing to do with your solar it is your central heating top up tank the fact that the water is warm in this tank could indicate that the system is "pitching" if you google you will see its where the pump pushes hot water into the tank
    (2) its lazy practice to route the overflow that way

    Thanks Daithi . It's all a lot clearer now and I learned a bit. I'll tell him get a plumber to have a look.

    Lazy to route the outflow that way but I guess the back in the early 80's when the plumbing was last worked on in the lads didnt care too much .


  • Registered Users Posts: 2,737 ✭✭✭ graememk


    Car99 wrote: »
    That makes more sense. The balcock in the small tank is shutting off completely though so I must have another reason for the small header tank over filling.

    Id still suspect the balcock, as its the only source of water for the system, Could be a small leak but enough to overflow eventually


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  • Registered Users Posts: 2,493 ✭✭✭ Car99


    graememk wrote: »
    Id still suspect the balcock, as its the only source of water for the system, Could be a small leak but enough to overflow eventually

    The water in the header tank is warm and after Daithi mentioned pitching I looked it up and that is a symptom of pitching . I'll get a plumber in.

    Thanks for the help everyone.


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