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Thread: Solar heating questions

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    Solar heating questions

    1st time pool owner. Started experimenting to figure out my plumbing connections. So i find that solar panels get water even when i shut the valve, either valve or flow control is leaking.

    Solar panels also seem to have a leak, so my question is:
    1. How do i know what panels i have - i read on internet FEFCO, HELICOL, are there others?
    2. Do i worry about valves still sending water up the panels or just ignore?

    Thanks for insights.
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    Mod Squad jblizzle's Avatar
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    Re: Solar heating questions

    1. There are a lot of different manufacturers. Add a picture of the panels and connections and someone might be able to ID them.

    2. You should be able to shut them down and will want them drained in the winter to prevent freeze damage. Add some pictures of your plumbing setup and maybe we will spot a problem.
    Jason, TFP Moderator
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    Isaac-1's Avatar
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    Re: Solar heating questions

    Like Jason said, pictures can really help here.

    Ike
    Indoor 20x40 35,000 gallon vinyl pool with 1.5 HP 2 speed Jandy FloPro pump, Hayward EC75 Perflex DE filter, 11 4x12 Techno-Solis solar panels w/ Aquasolar controller, Aquabot Turbo T Robot Cleaner. Also LMI metering chlorine dispenser pump and HotSpring Jetsetter
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    Re: Solar heating questions

    Here it is. There are 9 panels. From looks of it either 4x8 or 4x12, not sure which one.
    cannot take picture of whole thing at once.

    Any ideas?
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    Mod Squad jblizzle's Avatar
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    Re: Solar heating questions

    Well, I can tell you definitively that they are NOT Heliocol.

    I think you may need some more close up pictures ... they may even say what they are if you get up on the roof.
    Jason, TFP Moderator
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    Re: Solar heating questions

    Will post closeups this weekend. Thank you for all the help
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    Isaac-1's Avatar
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    Re: Solar heating questions

    Yes, a couple of closeups may help, particularly of the coupler section and of the panel tubes where they connect to the headers.

    Ike

    p.s. it may also help if you have a set of calipers and can measure the exact diameter of the headers
    Indoor 20x40 35,000 gallon vinyl pool with 1.5 HP 2 speed Jandy FloPro pump, Hayward EC75 Perflex DE filter, 11 4x12 Techno-Solis solar panels w/ Aquasolar controller, Aquabot Turbo T Robot Cleaner. Also LMI metering chlorine dispenser pump and HotSpring Jetsetter
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    Re: Solar heating questions

    Is the surface of the panels smooth, or are there visible tube ridges? That can help with the id.

    Panels should not have water flowering through them when the roof is cool, or it will actually cool the pool. Can you tell if the flow is high, or a small "leak" level flow?
    Fayetteville, NY -17K gal, IG vinyl, Hayward SP2300VSP Max-Flo Variable Speed Pump, FlowVis Flow Meter, Sand filter
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    Re: Solar heating questions

    And yes, there are a handful of panel manufacturers, making products under at least a dozen brands. If smooth, for example, good chance it is techno-solis or vortex, which I believe are both the same product under different names. (That's what I considered before going with my Solar Attic system.)

    Another thought, are you sure water actually is flowing through them when off, or could they just be full of water?
    Fayetteville, NY -17K gal, IG vinyl, Hayward SP2300VSP Max-Flo Variable Speed Pump, FlowVis Flow Meter, Sand filter
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    Re: Solar heating questions

    I have a leaky connector between the panels. I wanted to replace it, so closed the valve to solar and drained the panels using end tap. After the water from tap stopped, i started motor to make sure no water goes to panels. The tap at end started having flow again, although slow flow, little more than trickle.

    So water is going in, maybe at slower rate, my guess would be that check valve is leaking, but not sure if its valve or check valve.

    About the panels, i will try and get closeup
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    Re: Solar heating questions

    I removed one panel that was leaking. Actually it started as a water srinkler and later became a fountain, i do not now how to fix it so removed this panel.

    Its 47x120 inches, with 1 1/4 inch connector. Some images attached. I could not find any name on the panels. So couple of questions

    1. Is it possible to fix the tube that leaked or removing the panel was correct thing to to?
    2. Any ideas on manufacturer?
    3. The connecters were hard tube (like one used in sink drain. Its hard to connect new pipe, can i get the new flexible connectors from home depot and use? Or are these hard connectors for specific purpose application?

    Thank you for your help and time.
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    Re: Solar heating questions

    I am fairly certain that you have a Techno-Solis panels with 1.5 inch headers these are also sold under the Vortex name by Solar Direct. As to patching some people may have had success using plastic welding to repair, google plastic welding solar panels for a few references from around the net. These panels do not have separate tubes so the screw or plug method will not work.

    Ike
    Indoor 20x40 35,000 gallon vinyl pool with 1.5 HP 2 speed Jandy FloPro pump, Hayward EC75 Perflex DE filter, 11 4x12 Techno-Solis solar panels w/ Aquasolar controller, Aquabot Turbo T Robot Cleaner. Also LMI metering chlorine dispenser pump and HotSpring Jetsetter
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  13. Back To Top    #13

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    Re: Solar heating questions

    Quote Originally Posted by Isaac-1
    I am fairly certain that you have a Techno-Solis panels with 1.5 inch headers these are also sold under the Vortex name by Solar Direct. As to patching some people may have had success using plastic welding to repair, google plastic welding solar panels for a few references from around the net. These panels do not have separate tubes so the screw or plug method will not work.

    Ike

    Thanks ike, One question for flexible connector, do you know if HomeDepot/lowes connectors would be ok or solar panels need special connectors like this one:
    http://www.capturethesun.com/components ... &part=0065
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    linen's Avatar
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    Re: Solar heating questions

    As long as the connector/tubing is reinforced it should work. I would probably avoid the non-reinforced ones like Ferncos since they tend to expand and leak and also breakdown when hot. Straight radiator hose cut in the right lengths has worked for me.
    TFP Expert who uses Pool School and my TF100 test kit along with PoolMath for my: Round 11K gallon AGP with deep end, 20" sand filter, Matrix 1hp 2spd, 6 2ftX20ft solar panels (and solar cover!), Intex SWCG (copper bars disconnected) and a Rubadub hot tub (chlorine). The SLAM process is not finished until: 1. CC < 0.5 ppm, 2. An OCLT < 1.0 ppm and, 3. The water is crystal clear.

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    Isaac-1's Avatar
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    Re: Solar heating questions

    I bought my Techno Solis panels from poolheatpumps.com and they were very easy to work with, you might contact them for exact replacement couplers, I am not sure if they get them in individually and package installation "kits" themselves, or if they get the panel and system kits prepackaged. (panel kits include coupler, hose clamps, mounting brackets, etc.)

    Ike
    Indoor 20x40 35,000 gallon vinyl pool with 1.5 HP 2 speed Jandy FloPro pump, Hayward EC75 Perflex DE filter, 11 4x12 Techno-Solis solar panels w/ Aquasolar controller, Aquabot Turbo T Robot Cleaner. Also LMI metering chlorine dispenser pump and HotSpring Jetsetter
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    ~Remember TFP counts on your donations to keep this site ad free~

  16. Back To Top    #16

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    Re: Solar heating questions

    Another novice quesiton, do the holddown clamps need flashing? Or what to use for waterproofing roof for holddown clamps. Now i am up there, i want to take care of any small items that i have question about.
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  17. Back To Top    #17
    linen's Avatar
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    Re: Solar heating questions

    Probably depends on the clamp and the roofing material. I have asphalt shingles, so I just used tar to seal the penetrations.
    TFP Expert who uses Pool School and my TF100 test kit along with PoolMath for my: Round 11K gallon AGP with deep end, 20" sand filter, Matrix 1hp 2spd, 6 2ftX20ft solar panels (and solar cover!), Intex SWCG (copper bars disconnected) and a Rubadub hot tub (chlorine). The SLAM process is not finished until: 1. CC < 0.5 ppm, 2. An OCLT < 1.0 ppm and, 3. The water is crystal clear.

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    Re: Solar heating questions

    I have shingles too, probably asphalt. I notice that the caulk/cement etc used originally has become brittle and breaks away. I will investigate the tar solution.

    Thank you
    Go Spa 742 | 310 Gal | Ozone | Lucite Cast Acryllic | 220v | Installed Aug 2013
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