FPH AC condensor heat exchanger alternative from Aliexpress

jseyfert3

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Many States (ymmv) have solar-access laws, ie, HOAs, neighborhood covenants and municipalities are legally barred from interfering with homeowners installing solar devices (heat or PV). They can ask you to please make it look nice but even then they can not use aesthetics arguments to block an installation. I routinely threaten my neighbors that I plan to install a huge ground-based array in my front yard with the panels angled so as to beam reflected light right at them … the snakes and lizards need some shade so why put them on the roof 🤷‍♂️. They laugh uncomfortably when I tell them my plans because they are not sure how serious I am ….
Interesting. I’ll look into that, thanks.
 

JoyfulNoise

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Interesting. I’ll look into that, thanks.


Relevant part -
Home Owners' Associations
o Wisconsin Statute 236.292 voids all restrictions on platted land that would prevent or restrict the construction of solar energy systems. The law effectively prohibits any private land use controls from preventing the installation of solar energy systems.

So basically any private property that is on a platted map (county or municipal zoning map) is free to install solar energy systems AND any prior covenants or restrictions attached to the deed are null & void. You are now free to install a 50MW solar array on your roof ... you might need to upgrade your wiring though ....
 
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jseyfert3

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Relevant part -


So basically any private property that is on a platted map (county or municipal zoning map) is free to install solar energy systems AND any prior covenants or restrictions attached to the deed are null & void. You are now free to install a 50MW solar array on your roof ... you might need to upgrade your wiring though ....
Sweet! Thanks! I just looked it up myself. It’s a very brief law. Wisconsin 236.292 (2) says:
All restrictions on platted land that prevent or unduly restrict the construction and operation of solar energy systems, as defined in s. 13.48 (2) (h) 1. g., or a wind energy system, as defined in s. 66.0403 (1) (m), are void.
And the definition of solar energy systems, 13.48 (2) (h) 1. g.
“Solar energy system" means equipment which directly converts and then transfers or stores solar energy into usable forms of thermal or electrical energy.
So that would include basically any solar energy array.

Thanks again! I’ve always wanted domestic solar water heating, now I know it’s allowed off to do a lifecycle analysis. And plan for solar pool heating next year!
 

JoyfulNoise

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Most solar access laws are very succinct … they basically all say the same thing -

“Go pound sand HOA covenants! Homeowners are free to install solar whenever and wherever they like … even if it’s an ugly color and blocks your view!”

In AZ, it’s even more pro-homeowner - not only can homeowners install what they want whenever they want but also if an HOA gives you legal trouble to try to slow you down you can counter-sue for damages (cost overruns due to delays) and all legal fees you incur. Basically HOAs here are told to pipe down and be quiet.
 

bluedolphin

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@jseyfert3 I live in SW Florida so my AC unit runs a lot. The home / AC unit is about 10 months old. The heat reclamation concept is used all the time for many years in commercial/industrial applications. Example would be a freezer section in a grocery store. The heat is used to heat water in the store.

For residential use and as for time that it would take to get the pool up to temperature, this idea is unlike a heat pump or gas heater where you turn on your high output heater for the weekend or for a given day. The intention here is to slowly get the temperature up to your set point and keep it there 24/7. The use of a pool cover at night (Florida sun could deteriorate the cover pretty fast) would help a lot at retaining heat in the pool. My goal is to get the water to ~94 deg in the summer and see how many months I can keep it above 90.

I run a variable speed 1.65HP pump at 600RMP 24/7 (installed it a few days ago, might need to bump up the speed for proper sanitation as well the FPH needs 33GPM) so with the FPH heat exchanger there would not be a need to cycle the pump on and off every time the AC kicks on. Also I suspect the AC unit would run more efficiently. My AC unit is 3 tons so with the FPH system it can provide ~45,000 BTUs per hour of condenser heat rejection. (Last August my AC ran ~9.26hrs/day and I estimate it would run ~7.5hrs/day in January.

I see @nuttyp had a home also in SW Florida and has a number of reviews & info on his FPH system. It's been a while since he posted, so I am hoping he will see this and comment if for southern / tropical install environment... "is it worth it?" Reading his initial posts it looks like he was very pleased with the results.

I am a little bit reserved with the idea of have a roof mounted PV array or circulated solar heat panels. I've had the hot water panels for a pool before... they leak and you wont know it until it gets bad enough.

As for a PV array, possibly. I am keen on the idea of generating a few thousand watts to run a AC (by night)/DC (by day) powered heat pump. The panels will shade the roof keeping the attic space a little cooler. Over time I can expand with more panels and possible grid tie.

As for Aliexpress and Alibaba... ya, I would agree. Buying through those channels does seem very risky.
 
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jseyfert3

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Inefficiencies of the AC unit. A 36,000 BTU AC can move 36,000 BTU/hr of heat from the inside of the house to outside. But it takes energy to do that, i.e. the power required to run the compressor. Most of that power will end up as heat in the refrigerant and rejected in the condenser.

For example, in round numbers, the average window AC unit is 5000 BTU/hr of cooling. They take about 500 watts to run. Most of the 500 watts will get rejected as heat. 500 watts is 1700 BTU/hr, so a 5000 BTU/hr AC can be expected to reject approximately 6700 BTU of heat.
 
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