There are two types of solar energy that we can use to heat our homes: passive and active solar heating.
Passive Solar Heating makes use of the sun’s heat without any equipment (like solar collectors). We rely mainly on windows to take advantage of this energy, but can also use walls, floors, roofs and landscaping elements to provide additional control (especially in the summer when cooling is preferred). Passive solar heating methods can also maximize the use of the sun’s light (instead of relying on electricity to light your home).
Active Solar Heating uses solar collectors to collect the energy and then redistributes it from the roof to the rest of the house using pumps and fans. Sometimes the heat is transferred to a storage system to be used later.
Applications for Active Solar Energy:
- Space heating
- Hot water heating (including commercially, like laundries and carwashes)