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Old 06-06-2010, 01:59 PM   #1
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Roof solar water tank?

One of my solar panels died leaving an attractive spot for adding something.

I'm considering building a solar water tank on the roof. I'd like to get some comments to straighten me out before I start another expensive time consuming project.

Proposed tank is roughly 4' by 3' by 1" tall. Made of acrylic, black bottom clear top. It will hold around 7 gallons. Cost around 400 dollars to build. Weigh between 60 and 70 lbs full.

Things I've already considered:

Will need to adjust top springs again to lift. Will be heavy, but no where near the 200lbs allowed.

Water may be way too hot in the summer. Will have to figure some sort of temp sensor. Might have to partially cover tank based on solar season.

Will not be connected to internal water at all. Strictly for outside showers and camping.

Haven't figured out venting yet.

Was planning to use simple garden hose plug in connectors for different uses.

Ok tear it up guys, why is this a stupid idea?
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Old 06-06-2010, 02:59 PM   #2
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Re: Roof solar water tank?

If you're going to do that, which sounds really interesting, how about just plumbing a pool-style water heater with some sort of temp flex hose connecting it to the hot water side of your system?

My dad and I DIYed one way back out of copper tubing on top of a black background and plexiglass top with a wood frame. Heck, you might even be able to use the PV panel's frame if you use small enough pipe. I'm not sure how long the tubing would need to be to heat the water to a certain temp given the GPM, but I'm sure it could be calculated. It would probably take a bit stronger pump to get the water up there, but it probably would for the tank, too.

Just my initial thoughts. Out of curiousity, why are you not replacing the PV panel? I think most are guaranteed for ~25 years. Maybe that is void on a vehicle, though.
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Old 06-06-2010, 03:16 PM   #3
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Re: Roof solar water tank?

You could always go this route. It's about half the cost of what you're looking to spend on your project.

http://www.roadshower.com
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Old 06-06-2010, 03:32 PM   #4
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Re: Roof solar water tank?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Txn2daBone
You could always go this route. It's about half the cost of what you're looking to spend on your project.

http://www.roadshower.com
I think he was trying to fill the void left by the solar panel. I might get one of these for me, though! Probably a lot less complicated than plumbing my Hydronic to a flat plate.
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Old 06-06-2010, 06:16 PM   #5
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Roof solar water tank?

Webbmac

I only have 10 gallons inside. I really need the extra volume on the roof. Not too concerned with hot water inside. A line from top to sink would be a big hassle I think with the pop top.

Solar panel:
The third panel was overkill. It's still in the garage. On the list to look into warranty/repair.
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Old 06-06-2010, 06:20 PM   #6
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Roof solar water tank?

The road shower is Where I'm headed. I'm just trying to do it cleaner. I have enough trouble not tearing my awning off in the trees. Don't want another "tube" up there. Thanks for the link though.
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Old 06-06-2010, 06:35 PM   #7
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Re: Roof solar water tank?

Will there be baffles to to stop the water from sloshing around? The water would cause a shifting load high up on the van. Don't know if that would have any effect while driving or not.
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Old 06-06-2010, 11:22 PM   #8
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Roof solar water tank?

Yes definitely planned on the baffles.
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Old 06-06-2010, 11:50 PM   #9
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Re: Roof solar water tank?

my working model

worked fine, just decided against it

i like the idea of a flat one, however
a) water is heavy
b) did not want another "system" to tinker with


my aluminess rack holds 3 Five gallon Solar showers easy
cost me $10 each

also the hose i use for filling onboard water tank
takes a shower nozzel

as well as my msr
dromidary bags


maybe a light weight cargo basket (tule/yakama style)
with a couple of water bladders/solar showers/dromidary bags...

last pic is taps used
some one pm me, pay shipping and
i will send 'em to you





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Old 06-10-2010, 10:37 AM   #10
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Roof solar water tank?

After talking with billwilson Im now leaning towards some sort of tray with a water bag inside. More simple and cheaper too.
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