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SESSA - Solar Water Heating Division Member

Eskom Solar Rebate Programme Accreditation

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Frequently Asked Solar Geyser Questions

The list below answers the most commonly asked questions about solar geysers.  If you have a question that isn't answered below please send us a message and we'll answer your question directly and then add it onto our FAQ list.

How does a solar geyser work?

In simple terms, a solar water heating system or solar geyser captures solar energy emitted from the sun and uses this to produce your home’s hot water. The two main components of the system are the solar collector which heats up the water and the geyser which stores this hot water ready for consumption. For further technical details and descriptions of other components that make up a solar system please click here.

How will I benefit from 'going solar'?

Generally there are two reasons for people to turn to solar water heating, either to reduce their electricity bill or to make a conscious decision to turn to a renewable or green form of energy. Whichever one of these is the primary motivating factor the benefit of the other will also be realized so it is a win-win situation. Click here for more great reasons to switch to solar water heating.

How much can I expect to save on my electricity bill by switching to solar water heating?

Every household’s hot water consumption pattern and usage is different so there is no magic number as to exactly how much each home will save by switching to solar. An accepted approximation of the potential savings is that in an average South African home about 60% of the electricity cost comes from conventional geyser water heating and of this up to 80% can be saved by switching to a solar water heating system.

For example, on a monthly electricity bill of say R1,500 the potential monthly savings can be estimated as follows:

Total electricity bill = R1,500
Approximate geyser heating portion (60%) = 1,500 x 0.60 = R900 
Approximate monthly savings by going solar = 900 x 0.80 = R720

As stated these are estimated and conservative savings, even higher savings can be achieved by moderating hot water usage and becoming more water wise.

Will I still get hot water if the sun is not shining or on cold winter days?

Simply put, you will always get hot water!  Our solar systems come with a backup element which will kick in if there is not enough solar energy on any given day to heat the water to the correct temperature.

Our solar collectors are also extremely efficient and even on cloudy days and during winter they will be able to provide some heat while the backup element will merely provide ‘top up’ heat to bring the geyser up to temperature before use.

How does the Eskom solar rebate programme work and will I really get paid out?

When the Eskom rebate programme first started out there were some teething problems in the processing system and the payout times varied considerably but this process has been streamlined and simplified and it is now running very efficiently.

We will handle your rebate for you and personally submit your forms to Deloitte who process the rebates on behalf of Eskom.

The current processing time, once your rebate form has been dropped off at at Deloitte, is typically eight weeks after which the rebate will be paid directly into your nominated bank account.

How much will my Eskom solar rebate be?

The solar systems that we offer are all registered on the Eskom SWH rebate programme.

Rebate amounts are calculated on the size and efficiency (commonly known as the Q Factor) of each system.

Currently our rebates vary from R5,274 for the smaller 150 litre systems to R8,964 for the large 300 litre system. Click here to go to our company listing on the Eskom website which includes a full list of our rebated solar systems.

What is the expected useful life of a solar system?

There are many different brands of solar systems available on the market today and the quality of systems on offer ranges quite considerably.

Many solar systems come with a manufacturer warranty of only 5 years whereas our systems all have a minimum of a 5 year manufacturer warranty on both the solar collector and geyser with an expected useful life of up to 20 years.

When choosing our product mix the quality and efficiency of the solar systems were key to us to ensure that we offer our clients the best long term solar solution for their hot water needs.

Are there any significant maintenance costs associated with solar water heating systems?

The solar systems that we offer have a very low maintenance profile.

Our solar collectors are extremely robust and only require an occasional hosing down with your garden hosepipe once every six months or so. If this is not possible the odd rainy day will also clear off any dirt that may have settled on the collector.

The Solartherm geyser that we install with our systems is 100% maintenance free due to the PEX (Cross-linked polyethylene) lining on it’s inner walls, eliminating any corrosive tank damage that is common in many geysers.

The only maintenance on the system that may be required is a check on the circulation pump or replacement of the geyser element or thermostat, these parts all come with the industry standard of a one year manufacturer warranty.