Knick's Solar Water Heating System  -- Collector Installation

This page covers the details on installing the collectors on the south facing wall of the house.

Note how the aluminum trim pieces both protect the collector boxes from the weather and also make for a very nice appearance.


Collector Installation

Siding off the wall, and first box mounted.

I wanted the collector box top to be even
with the top of the window, but I had the pipes
that pass into the house too low, so the
collector is about an inch higher than I would like.

Aluminum trim that covers and weatherproofs
the top of the collector boxes.  The natural
aluminum finish piece is the trim for
the twinwall glazing.

Connecting the Three Collectors Together

click on pictures for full size

Automotive heater hose connects the
collector manifolds together.
Small piece of sheet metal bent over the
hose to protect it from from sun exposure.



The glazing is held in place by aluminum trim pieces that fit over the outside face of the glazing and hold it against the collector box frame.


Glazing trim detail.

Glazing trim piece end view.


Aluminum trip to hold glazing.

Another view of the trim that holds glazing
in place.

Detail of trim that holds glazing in place.

I wrapped the face of the collectors with trim coil bent into an L shape.  I also wrapped the outside on the box with another L piece to protect the outside


All three collector boxes mounted.
Trim being installed.

Hard to see, but this is what will hold the
twinwall glazing in place along the top.


First sheet of the twinwall Polycarbonate
glazing installed.

You can see that the first panel looks clearer.  There was a plastic film that when removed left a film on the glazing. 


I then cleaned it off, it was not as bad on the
other two but was there I just did not Know it.


The twin wall was shipped with a peel away film to protect it. the 3 pieces I got came from another warehouse as 10' long is the normal panel for them. so to save paying for shipping of just 3 pieces or waiting for a normal stock order they got these from the there other warehouse.  I removed the film on two panels and put them up.  On the 3rd one I peeled the film off and it seemed like it left a residue behind (kinda hazy) I took some automotive cleaner wax and was able to get the haze off.  Then I could see the haze on the other 2.  Not as bad, but it was there.  I read on the protective film not to let the twinwall to set in direct sunlight as this could make the film hard to remove.  I thought these 8 foot odd ball panels may have been it the sun a few times and that's what caused it.  If you look at the next to last picture in the Collector install, you will see the closer panel is the one I cleaned.
you also see I put two supports in each box for the twinwall to screw too but I never did as the trim seems to hold it good plus I thought it looked better with out screws. We will see if it holds up


The twinwall glazing was purchased from a local Greenhouse Supply:

BFG Supply
1144 River Street
Kalamazoo, MI 49048
Lori helped me and was very good , if she did not know the answer to my question she found out and called me back. Great people to work with!  They also had great pricing


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