08 Nov Solar Air Conditioning
Good evening viewers!
There seems to be a lot of talk about residential “solar” air conditioning of late so I thought I should look into this a little deeper and see what residential solar air conditioning is all about. Is this something we should offer our customers? What are the advantages of this type of system? It seems that they have been tagged with the word hybrid, but you shouldn’t be thinking quality Toyota car here, hybrid they may be, but more in the sense of a hybrid combination of Chinese split system junk that used to once saturate the Australian residential market before we tightened our energy efficiency standards and evacuated tubes that are more commonly found as part of a solar hot water system. They seem to have taken these poorly made inefficient units and added hot water evacuated tubes in order, or so it is claimed to “improve efficiency” the only reason they would have done this is to meet the M.E.P.S. which stands for Minimum Energy Performance Standards, or the Start Rating System as it is more commonly known.
And would you believe after hours and hours of researching the internet I could not find one reputable air conditioning contractor offering “solar” air conditioning, it seems the guys trying to drive this market are generally the Photo Voltaic Solar installers who have little or no understanding of refrigeration systems, principles or thermodynamics.
Check out this report by choice magazine, the consumer watchdog. It is one of the better looking types utilising a flat plat collector instead of evacuated tubes, but given the piping mess that the install creates, I can’t see it being viable. And choice has rated it very poorly. Click Here to view the report
In all honesty the only thing I can see that is “solar” about these units is the fact that they sit in the sun!
However, worth noting there is a movement gaining momentum for the use of solar cooling on a commercial scale where real energy savings can be made. It is called ausSCIG They are a sub-group of the Australian Institute or Refrigeration Air conditioning and Heating as well as the so we have special people in white coats working in special buildings, talking in terms that I grasp to understand, so that must be good.