Solar water heaters are capable of heating water by absorbing the heat from the sun and directing it into the water. These are perfect gadgets for saving up on your energy bills, as it consumes no electricity. Besides, by reducing your dependence on fossil fuels, they help in reducing your carbon footprints. These are some of the best environment-friendly devices for everyday use.
The water heated inside a solar water heater can be used for a variety of purposes, such as bathing, cooking, and cleaning. Most people, however, tend to be disappointed by the high cost of buying and installing a solar water heater. But in the long run, it results in incredible savings. Besides, they can work perfectly fine for a long time, without requiring any replacement.
Buying a solar water heater for your home can be tricky. There is a wide range of these products in the market. Besides, you need to be aware of a number of things like specs, features, and prices, before buying one.
Therefore, in this article, we will help you choose the best solar heater for your home. We will review some of the best solar water heaters in India, and list down the important factors which one should look for while a solar water heater.
As a participant of the Amazon Associates Program, we may earn a commission through purchases made through links on this post at no cost to you. Read more about our disclosure here.
Top 7 Best Solar Water Heaters in India 2021
1. Supreme Solar 200 LPD Solar Water Heater
- Tank Capacity: 200 LPD
- 2.5″ PUFF insulated tank
- Powder-coated outer body
- Ideal for up to family of 4
When it comes to solar heaters in India, Supreme Solar is one of the top brands. It makes durable, cost-effective solar heaters, which come in different sizes. Its products are meant for both home and commercial installations, such as hotels, restaurants, etc. This 200 LPD solar water heater offered by Supreme Solar is one of the best solar water heaters in India. It is ideal for a family of four.
The inner tank of this product has a glass-lined coating. This ensures that this solar water heater has a long life. Besides, glass line solar heaters are particularly useful in places where there is hard water. This is because it prevents rusting of tanks, and hence, adds to the longevity of the device.
Like all solar heaters, this is also an environmentally friendly device. It uses advanced technology to ensure that you get hot water for a variety of purposes. Besides, since the tanks are glass enabled coated, the water remains clean and hygienic.
The inner tank of this solar water heater is made of SS304 grade steel. Thus, this 200 LPD solar water heater can work perfectly fine for a long period of time, without requiring repairs of any kind. The same model is also available in a range of capacities, such as 100, 150, 250, 300, and 500 LPD.
Like all other Supreme Solar products, this product, too, is manufactured with high standard machinery and precision technology. You should definitely go for this water heater if you want an eco-friendly water heating device for your home, which possesses excellent qualities.
2. Racold Alpha Pro Solar Water Heater
- Tank Capacity: 200LPD
- Can be used with soft and hard water up to 1000PPM.
- High-efficiency vacuum tubes
Just like Supreme Solar, Racold is another leading brand of solar water heaters in India. The Racold Alpha Pro is one of the best solar water heaters in India. It is a cost-effective, durable, eco-friendly device, which is well-suited for both home use and commercial usage. It uses a high energy absorption vacuum tube which has a length of over 1800 mm. It ensures an optimum level of energy absorption and makes it a highly efficient solar water heater. It is designed by keeping international standards in mind.
Besides, this product features a Smart Float technology. It is a unique float valve technology, developed and patented by Racold itself. It helps eliminate long air vents, thus, ensuring safe usage. It is particularly useful in areas that have a high wind velocity. Moreover, this water heater is also suitable for usage in areas with hard water. It can handle hard water applications up to 1000 PPM and 500 Chloride, with pH levels between 6.5 to 7.5.
Another great thing about this product is its wide range of sizes. It is available in varying capacities and you can select any one of them, in accordance with your need and convenience. It is available in 100, 150, 200, 250, and 300 LPD capacities. However, there is no 500 LPD variant of this water heater available. This means that it is not particularly meant for commercial installations.
Finally, Racold also provides a great warranty on this water heater. There is a 5-year warranty on the tank. The float is covered under a warranty period of 2 years, whereas, there is a year of warranty on the stand. If you are planning on buying a solar water heater for your house, this is the perfect product.
3. V-Guard Win Series Solar Water Heaters
- Tank Capacity: 100 LPD
- High-quality PUF insulation that minimizes heat loss
- Great customer support across the country
In recent years, V-Guard has emerged as one of the most popular brands of electrical appliances in the market. It delivers products which are of great quality, and at the same time, are cost-effective. The solar water heaters of the V-Guard Win series are some of the best in the market. They are primarily meant for home use and can be used in all kinds of climates. It comes with a strong and durable storage tank, which is made of Food Grade SS304L.
The galvanized iron (GI) of this storage tank comes with a pre-coated GI (PPGI) outer cladding. Besides, its high-quality PUF insulation minimizes the loss of heat inside the tank. Thus, the water remains hot for a long time, and you can take a comfortable shower with the water from this solar water heater.
You are guaranteed trouble-free use with this water heater. There is no recurring cost of electricity involved. Besides, V-Guard has good customer support across the country. This series is divided into Win Hot Plus and Win Hot Plus H series. The former is meant for areas with soft water, whereas the latter is suitable for areas where there is hard water. In fact, the water heaters of the Win Hot Plus H series are some of the best solar water heaters for hard water in India.
The Win Hot Series water heaters are fitted with high-quality vacuum tubes, which minimizes heat loss. Besides, the scaling of the tube is negligible. There is a high-quality PUF insulation for the tube. Due to a greater absorption area through the circular vacuum tube, it is able to absorb the sun’s heat in a better way.
With all these great specs and features, the V-Guard Win Series solar water heaters are the perfect devices to heat water in your house. You should definitely go for this eco-friendly product.
4. Tata 300 LPD Flat Plate Collector Solar Water Heater
- Tank Capacity: 300 LPD
- Suitable for a family of 6-7
- Can also be used in small commercial establishments like PGs, lodging, and hotels.
Tata Solar is one of the largest manufacturers of solar power based appliances in India. Its products are known for their perfect quality and durability. As the name suggests, this 300 LPD solar water heater offered by Tata Solar uses a flat plate collector technology, which is one of the most efficient technologies used in solar water heaters. This solar heater is ideal for a family of 6 to 7 members. It is also well-suited for small commercial spaces, such as small lodging facilities.
It has an extremely durable tank, which allows the device to work repair-free for a long period of time. The inner tank of this water heater has a nonstick 2 mm ceramic lining.
This acts as efficient insulation so that the heat is retained for a long time. Besides, it is fitted with PUF insulation, as well, for even better heat retention. The total number of tubes on this product is 27. The tubes are 2 mm thick, so that water can easily pass through them.
It can heat water up to temperatures of 80 degrees. Another great thing about this product is its warranty. Tata Solar offers a 5-year warranty on this product. Thus, it is, certainly, one of the best solar water heaters in India. It is an ideal choice of a solar water heater for your house.
5. Jain Solar Evacuated Tube Collector (ETC) 100LPD Water Heater
- Tank Capacity: 100LPD
- Suitable for a family of 3
- Limited customer service could be a drawback
Jain Solar is a less known brand when compared to other brands which we have considered for review in this article. The company makes a number of products like solar street lights, solar home lights, solar inverters and UPS’, and so forth. This water heater offered by them is one of the most economical solar water heaters in India.
Its size of 100 LPD, however, means that it is suitable only for small families, with a maximum of 3 members. It is a highly efficient solar collector technology that uses glass tubes to absorb heat. The heat is then transferred to the water flowing inside it.
It is capable of heating water up to temperatures of 85 degrees celsius. The technology used on this solar water heater is such that it can retain heat for a long time. However, one of the major drawbacks of this product happens to be its limited customer service. Since this is a small company, its service locations are not spread across the country. Other than that, it is a perfect solar water heater for small families and bachelors.
6. Bosch Evacuated Tube Collector (ETC) 100 LPD Solar Water Heater
- Thank Capacity: 100 LPD
- Rated to handle hard water up to 600PPM
- Suitable for a small family of 3
Bosch is one of the largest brands of electrical and home appliances in the world. Based out of Germany, its products are known for their durability, quality, and the value for money which they offer. This Bosch solar water based on an Evacuated Tube Collector technology is one of the best solar water heaters for home. It is perfectly suited for areas with hard water. The hot water tank of this water heater comes with an HDGI coating, which gives it a longer life. It can withstand a maximum water hardness of IP to 600 ppm.
In addition, the triple-layer evacuated tubes of this device have high heat-absorbing efficiency, keeping the water warm for a long time. It can withstand a maximum pressure rating of up to one atmospheric bar. Besides, this solar water heater does not require a lot of space for installation. It can be installed in a space with a dimension of 2.2 x 1 square meter.
Using this solar water heater, in the long run, can result in the saving of 1500 units of electricity every year. Besides, it can offset some 1.5 tonnes of carbon emissions every year, making it an environmentally friendly product. It is also available in varying sizes, such as 100, 150, 200, 300, and 500 LPD. You can choose any size in accordance with the number of members in your family.
The 500 LPD model is also suitable for small commercial spaces, such as family restaurants, lodges, etc. Given these incredible specs and features, you should definitely go for this solar water heater. It is one of the best solar water heaters in its class, loaded with the technological expertise of Bosch.
7. Havells Solero 150 LPD
- Tank Capacity: 150 LPD makes is suitable for a family of 3-4
- Highly durable anodized aluminum stand
Havells is a household name in electrical appliances in this country and is one of the best solar water heaters brands in India. This solar water heater offered by the company has a capacity of 150 LPD, which makes it suitable for a family of 3-4 members. It is equipped with a non-pressurized system.
The system is particularly designed for home solar water heaters to offer hot water at ideal temperatures. Besides, the inner tank of this solar water heater is made of high quality extra thick stainless steel. It is highly resistant to corrosion and is a food-grade material.
This solar water heater uses an Evacuated Tube Collector (ETC) technology. It is fitted with a two concentric glass set up, which prevents heat loss. It ensures that the water stays warm for a long time. In addition, the tank consists of an anode rod with a stainless steel core. It is designed to protect the tank against corrosive elements, preventing the breaking of the inner tank. It ensures that your solar water heater has a prolonged life.
Another great thing about this water heater is that it comes with a strong and durable anodized aluminum stand. This specially designed stand is weather-proof. It can withstand extreme temperatures. And unlike steel stands, it does not run into the risk of corrosion. Besides, it is well-designed to enhance the look of your terrace.
Other features that you will get on this water heater are a temperature control mechanism for the heating element, timer for the water inlet, dry heat protection, and current leakage protection. Loaded with all these features, this is one of the best solar water heaters in India, and you should definitely consider it for buying if you are looking for a water heater for your home that does not burn your pocket in the long run.
Factors to look for while buying a solar water heater
1. The source of water
The very first thing to look for while buying a solar water heater is the source of water supply in your house. It is important to determine whether the water that you receive is hard water or soft water.
This is because each of these types of water has different mineral capacities and thus, requires a different heating system. There are two kinds of heating systems: direct heating and indirect heating.
The direct water heating system is suitable for soft water sources. However, in the case of hard water, it is advisable to go for an indirect water heating system. Both direct and indirect solar water heaters are available in the market. In a direct water heating system, the water is heated directly through the heat of the sunlight trapped by the solar water heater.
However, in an indirect system, a fluid is used. The fluid is heated by the solar panel, which in turn, heats the water used in the house. This happens through a system of heat exchange. This is necessary because heating the hard water directly can result in pipe blockage. It can also corrode the collector tubes, and thus, affecting the functionality and longevity of the solar water heater.
2. Type and Functionality
There are mainly two different types of solar collectors – Flat Plate Collectors (FPC) and Evacuated Tube Collectors (ETC). The FPCs are made out of metals like copper or aluminium. This type of water heaters are particularly suited for tropical climates, as they have a higher degree of conductivity and emissivity.
This is why they are poor heat retainers under low ambient temperatures, and are hence, not suitable for temperate regions. In general, FPC water heating systems are bulkier than ETC systems. However, they are robust and more durable. They are also easily serviceable.
The ETC water heaters, however, have a higher heat retention capacity. Thus, they are suitable for both tropical and temperate regions. At the same time, they are made out of glass. Therefore, they are quite delicate and must be handled with extreme caution during installation, service, and operation.
Both these technologies can be used in open and closed-loop systems. An open-loop system works well for areas with clean and soft water, as the chances of clogging and scaling of the tubes which circulate the water are less. On the other hand, a closed-loop system is well-suited for areas where one does not know whether the type of water is hard or soft, or one is not aware of the cleanliness of the water.
It uses a difficult heating medium from the water in circulation. The heating medium is not allowed to be mixed with the water being heated. An open-loop system, on the other hand, uses the same circulation water as the heating medium.
Besides, water heaters can also be classified as hybrid and nonhybrid. Hybrid systems are equipped with an additional electric heating system in the storage tank to provide heating when solar energy is not strong enough to heat water. The non-hybrid systems, on the other hand, do not feature any such technology.
The size of the solar water heating system is another important factor that you must be aware of while buying one for your home. The capacity of solar water heaters is indicated by LPD, which stands for liters per day. On average, a person uses some 30 liters of water. Hence, a 100 LPD solar water heater will be ideal for a family of 3.
In smaller homes, solar water heaters with a capacity ranging between 150 and 200 liters are sufficient. However, a larger household might require a 300 LPD solar water heater. On the other hand, commercial and industrial sites require solar water heaters in the range of 500 LPD to 5000 LPD. Most of the best solar water heaters in India which we have reviewed in this article have capacities ranging between 100 and 500 LPD, are most suitable for homes and small commercial installations.
4. Plumbing Work
Installation is one of the important aspects of any solar water heater. Wrong plumbing work can render the entire machine dysfunctional. A number of plumbers are not simply aware of the working of the two-piping mechanism. In this mechanism, hot and cold water is connected to the house using two pipes, one for hot water and the other for cold water. It is mostly used in bathrooms. Moreover, it is essential to use the tube type of solar heater as it heats the water at a much faster rate, and is economical when compared to the flat type.
5. Type of Tank
Tanks act as storage sites for the heated water. They should be able to withstand the heat and retain the same. A thick, well-designed tank can retain heat for more than 60 hours. Besides, the tank should be made of a food safety grade material to ensure that the water stored does not give out a foul smell.
Besides, tanks should also be rust free. Tanks with enamel coating are the best to prevent corrosion which is caused by hard water. You must always check for the material used for the tank in the product description.
6. Service Life
It is important to be aware of the service life of solar water heaters. Similarly, it is also important to know if the brand can provide after-sales service at your location. Besides, you also need to be aware of the warranty offered by the brand on the product. Some of the best solar heaters for homes come with a warranty period of 5 years.
A good solar water heater can last for more than 15 years, given that you maintain it well, and go for servicing from time to time. While buying a water heater, you need to maintain price and quality. Always take a closer look at the product description before buying.
7. Water Pressure System
It is very important to consider the water pressure in the house. A lot of times, one ends up buying a water heating system that cannot withstand the pressure coming from the water source. Such a water heater has a high likelihood of being damaged.
There are two types of water pressure systems – the pressurized and the non-pressurized system. Equilibrium needs to be there between the supply line and the solar water heater. Selecting the wrong application for the wrong system will lead to an obvious failure of the system.
In addition, you need to check whether the solar water heating system is going to be placed on a pitched roof, or a flat environment. Each of these requires a different kind of system for producing optimum results.
As a general rule, it is always suitable to buy a solar water heater that can withstand a greater degree of water pressure. Solar water heaters that can withstand 8-10 Kpa of pressure are the most ideal. They must also come with a faster heat recovery mechanism and an efficient heat exchange technology.
8. Temperature Regulation
Solar water heaters must be equipped with an inbuilt thermostat capacity which can maintain a water temperature between 60 and 75 degrees celsius. This is to avoid scalding effects, such as skin burn from hot water. The burn is dangerous as it can destroy tissues and cells, and in extreme cases, it can cause the body to go in shock from the heat.
9. Climate and Geographical Location
It is important to know about your climatic/weather conditions before purchasing a solar water heater. Since a solar water heater draws heating energy entirely from sunlight, therefore, your location should get enough sunshine, particularly between 10 am and 4 pm on a daily basis. Direct solar heaters are feasible in tropical areas, as they receive the maximum sunshine. However, in temperate regions, it is better to buy a hybrid solar heater, because of the limited sunshine hours.
10. Professional Installation
As already noted, installation is one of the key aspects of any solar water heater. Therefore, it is important to buy solar water heaters from reputable companies, as they offer professional installation. The same holds true for after-sales services, as well. You should be able to get quick and timely responses from the end of the company.
A good installation ensures that the device works as it should and it also adds to its longevity. The basic steps in the process of installing a solar water heater include mounting the solar collectors on the roof or the ground, followed by the installation of the storage tank and the heat exchanger next to the water heater.
Other steps include installing the piping and pump for the glycol loop. Besides, the pipings and other controls should be perfectly installed for the best performance.
Periodic maintenance is very important to ensure the efficient operation of the solar water heater. Apart from the heating system itself, you must also keep the pipes of the house well maintained. In addition, maintenance of water valves are equally important, so as to ensure an optimum level of water pressure. You should definitely hire a good plumber and ensure that the technician involved in the maintenance of the solar water heater is skillful enough to handle everything properly.
Frequently Asked Questions
Q1. Do solar water heaters work on cloudy days?
The main requirement for the working of solar water is sunlight. Therefore, for optimum heating, you will need sunny conditions. The heating output is directly proportional to the amount of sunlight available at a particular moment.
Under bright overcast conditions, a solar water heater can generate 50 to 70 percent of its typical output. However, on rainy days, or under cloudy conditions, the use of an auxiliary backup will be required.
Q2. Do solar water heaters work in winter?
There are a number of factors that decide the overall output of a solar water heater. If the system is equipped with good insulation, sunlight will be able to heat the water quite well, even during the winters. Since the heating is done by the radiation energy of the sun, it can come through the glass and heat enclosure.
This means that even if the temperature outside is below freezing if there is good insulation, there will be minimal heat loss. Besides, the other thing is how good the tank’s heat retention capacity is. A good quality tank can retain the heat for a long time, even under low outside temperature.
Q3. Does a solar water heater work at night?
A solar water heater cannot generate hot water during the night. However, the hot water which is generated during the day is stored inside the storage tank. A tank that is equipped with good PUF insulation can store hot water for more than 24 hours. Thus, you can enjoy a good shower under hot water even at night.
Q4. How much energy/electricity does a solar water heater save?
A solar water heater is one of the most cost-effective water heating solutions for any house. A 150 LPD capacity solar water heater, suitable for 3 to 4 people, can result in savings of up to 1500 units of electricity every year. Thus, solar water heaters also result in the reduction of carbon footprints.
Q5. How long do solar hot water systems last?
It entirely depends on the quality of the solar water heater. Other factors include the quality of the water, maintenance, etc. In general, a good solar water heater can last for around 15 to 20 years, depending on the material used to protect the inner tank of the water heating system.
A solar water heater with a glass-lined coated tank can last for well over 25 years. The best solar water heaters in India, which we have reviewed in this article are extremely durable and can easily last for more than 15 years.
Q6. What is the ideal capacity for a solar water heater?
The thumb rule in deciding the capacity is that a person requires 30-50 litres of water. Also, note that the water heater should be installed just above the bathroom floor. The following chart can help you in deciding the capacity of a solar water heater that you would need for your household.
|100 LPD||2 to 3 persons|
|150 LPD||3 to 4 persons|
|200 LPD||4 to 5 persons|
|250 LPD||5 to 6 persons|
|300 LPD||6 to 8 persons|
|500 LPD||10 to 14 people|
Solar water heaters are extremely efficient gadgets for delivering hot water to your house. The best thing about solar water heaters is that it consumes no electricity. These are environmentally friendly products and aid in the reduction of carbon footprints.
However, buying a solar water heater is more difficult than buying a regular geyser. This is not just because of the exceedingly large number of brands and products, but also there are a number of factors, specs, and features that one needs to look for.
Therefore, in this article, we have tried to help you buy the ideal solar water heater for your house. We have included all the important factors that you need to look for while buying a solar water heater.
Besides, we have also listed down and reviewed some of the best solar water heaters in India. We have also answered some of the frequently asked questions with regards to these products. Go through our buyers’ guide carefully, and make an informed decision.