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Solar heaters


  • solar is the most sustainable source of energy for heating
  • solar energy does not produce any greenhouse pollution
  • solar heating systems do not have ongoing operating costs


  • solar heating systems are less effective on cloudy days, meaning alternative heating systems may need to be used
  • initial purchase and installation costs are high

Solar air heaters

Solar air heaters use solar panels to warm air which is then conveyed into a room. The basic components of a solar air heater include solar collector panels, a duct system and diffusers.

Systems can operate with or without a fan. Without a fan the air is distributed by the action of a natural ventilation system.

Solar air heaters provide free interior heating to complement conventional climate control systems. It is important to note that the output from solar heaters is reduced when clouds reduce the amount of sunlight. A typical solar air heater collector panel would assist in the heating of a small room.

Solar air heating is potentially suitable for any building that requires heating, providing the collector panel can be placed on an appropriate unshaded north-facing roof or wall. Commercially produced units are available in Australia.

Solar air heaters cost around $2500, plus installation. The pay back period is around 10 to 15 years when used to complement gas heating systems and five to seven years for electricity and wood.

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