Conventional air conditioning systems in homes come at a cost, both to your bills and to the environment. Containing that impact and keeping your home warm is only possible with clean energy. Do you want to know how? Well, we give you the keys to creating a solar heating system. The manufacture of this equipment is simple and will allow you to have an alternative heat source to conventional sources, which you can go to in cloudy weather.
- 2 × 8 wood strip (4’8 cm x 19’8 cm).
- 2 × 6 wood strip (4’8 cm x 14’8 cm).
- 2 × 4 wood strip (4’8 cm x 9’8 cm).
- 2 × 2 wood strip (4.8 cm x 4.8 cm).
- Glass or plexiglass.
- Black aluminum shade.
- Caulk, paint, screws, lag screws, stapler and other tools.
Step 1: Create the frame and adjust it.
Create a box to mount on the wall of the house. Take into account the position relative to the sun for the heater to work well. Any wall facing south can work well. Alternatively, it is also possible to mount the system on walls facing south-east or south-west.
You will need to mount the structure vertically on the wall. Thus, the walls of the box will be formed of 2 x 6 wooden slats, while the sloping roof is 2 x 8.
To assemble the box, lay it on the floor and, once it’s secure, anchor it to the wall. When making the frame, take into account the spacing of the wall studs. For this project, they were two feet tall, so the width of the box is 2.4 meters, with vents in four sections.
Step 2: Paint and create the screen support.
The next step will be to paint the wood, then assemble the boards that will support the aluminum screen. To do this, you will need to insert a 2 × 4 board horizontally, in the area near the bottom of the box. Remember to leave space for the ventilation inlet.
Then insert a 2×2 or 2×4 board up and horizontally. If in doubt, check the explanatory drawing. Make notches in the middle board for the subsequent placement of another 2 × 2 that will act as a support for the glass.
Step 3: Assemble and seal.
Use a jack to hold the wooden structure so that it can be placed upright. Try having someone hold it while you drill the holes in the wall for the lag bolts. In this case, those used are 10 centimeters.
Seal the frame from the inside with a window and wood foam. Also seal the bottom 2×4 board that acts as a support for the screen.
Step 4: Cut the vents in the wall.
Once the box is secure, you will need to drill holes in the wall as shown, with a vent at the bottom and top for each section of pins. Be very careful with the electrical wiring. In this case, the vents measure 10 by 40 centimeters.
Use aluminum tape to cut the edges of the vents. Without a good saw this part of the project can be difficult, so if you have one, use it.
Step 5: Install the metal screen.
Cut and staple the metal screen, with a double layer, to the wood of the structure. It is important that the screen is made of metal to ensure heat exchange. If you go for other options, like the fiberglass screen, the system will not perform optimally. A 1.2 meter screen was used for this project. If there is excess material around the edges, cut them off with a utility knife or other tool.
Step 6: Glazing and vent valves.
Install the glazing and make sure to seal it well. In this case, corrugated PVC was used.
On top respirators you will need to install a flapper valve which you can make with plastic liner or garbage bags. This will ensure that the hot air is retained at night. It is also recommended to add some type of screen to the vents to contain the entry of insects and to prevent the valve from sucking into the vent.
With this you will have finished your solar heating, which you can also make with recycled wood, so enjoying the hot air practically for free is even more sustainable.
Original project in Instructables.