View Full Version : simple,easy and cheap summer solar water heater

08-12-2010, 09:14 AM
I was talking with one of my neighbors yesterday,who owns the chicken barns where I pick up the culled chickens that Tyson leaves behind,and he was telling me that he made a "solar" water heater out of copper pipe,and garden hose (you really don't need the copper pipe for this) because he hates going into his house after being in the chicken houses and carrying that smell in.

He simply attached the garden hoses (3 100' hoses) to his water supply line,than attached the copper coil to that,and plumbed it to a shower fixture.

The copper coil and garden hoses are simply fastened to his roof to keep them from sliding off,but are left coiled,the sun heats the water in the the hose/coil and when he turns it on,he has way more than enough hot water for a hot shower,he did run a second shorter line to his cold water and ran that to the shower fixture as well.

Pretty simple,idea,and saves him quite a bit on heating water during the summer,especially when he says he needs to take 3 or 4 showers a day after being in those barns.

08-12-2010, 11:52 AM
That's a good tip, but you do need a lot of hose.
We used a similar system at "The Place" our camp before the cabin was built.

Started out with on of the "camping solar showers", worked but was a pain lifting the bag up.

I only had a 100 ft of 5/8 dia black garden hose, and no copper tubing.

I actually was looking around on the web to see or calculate the volume of water inside a standard 5/8 garden hose, came up with all kinds of ads and such but really didn't get an answer.

I do know that the "hot water" didn't last long.

Water was collected in a plastic 55 gal drum, inside a box, so the water was at ambient temp or higher before being pumped into the hose on the roof of the shed w/ a 12v sprayer pump.

I up graded to a 2-1/2 gal water heater, that worked well.

Still is a good idea, thanks.

08-12-2010, 12:25 PM
An even simpler idea is paint a central heating water radiator black, mount it on your outhouse roof, a bit of pipe and shower fixture, hot water!
I also found a neat way to get free hot water by mistake a few years ago. I used to use a couple of large water containers as a heat sink in my greenhouse. I accidentally knocked the tap open on one and was surprised how warm the water was! Hot enough for a wash and to wash your hair.

08-12-2010, 12:47 PM
When I go camping, I always take a black 5 gallon pail, with 10 feet of 1/2 inch garden hose that has one end glued in the bottom of the pail, and a garden hose sprayer on the other end, set it up on the top of my pop up, and plenty of hot water at the end of the day for a good shower. The garden hose goes down through the top, for storage.

08-12-2010, 01:40 PM
That's a really great idea. Is there any chance of snapping a pic of the set up for us? I'd really like to have something like that going by next summer.

I'm all about saving money!

08-12-2010, 01:55 PM
You want a pic of tipacanoe taking a shower? Oh, wait. You meant Nell's neighbors.

08-12-2010, 02:00 PM
He wants a picture of Nell's neighbor taking a shower?

08-12-2010, 02:02 PM
I think his buckskin got wet and shrunk. He's not thinkin' straight. And his voice seems a bit higher.

08-12-2010, 02:04 PM
That splains a lot.