What is a Solar Cooler? Is it Worth Buying?
In the past few years, the earth’s temperature has increased tremendously. Moreover, the problem of overheating and power cuts happens frequently, particularly during summers. Relatable, right!?
This situation calls for the need to install air conditioners. However, conventional air conditioners require commercial electric supply, which leads to environmental degradation.
So what’s the alternative? A solar cooler!
Yes! If you live in hot climate zones, you must be spending a significant amount of time and money designing your house to minimise the effects of heat.
A solar cooler saves your efforts by harnessing the benefits of the enormous amount of sunlight collected by (for example) the rooftop solar panels.
Sounds enticing! Isn’t it?
Let’s check out the benefits of a solar cooler and explore its types one by one.
What is a Solar Cooler?
A solar cooler uses energy from the solar panels for cooling operations. They function similarly to typical air conditioners. However, they are not dependent on the commercial grid for power.
These air conditioners get electricity from three power options which include – solar storage battery, solar panels, and network electricity.
Exploring the Different Types of Solar Cooler Systems
There are various types of solar air conditioners available for domestic applications.
However, the three most common types of solar cooler systems are listed below.
- Solar thermal system
This type of solar cooler system employs a plate to capture energy from the sun’s rays. This energy further powers the electric generator to start the compressor, which is responsible for the cooling process in air conditioners.
Although this system uses solar power for most cooling functions, it is becoming less popular because of its low efficiency.
Moreover, it uses electric charges from the grid to run the electric control panel and fans. Therefore, customers’ demand is increasing for PV air conditioning systems.
But, what are the solar PV air conditioners? Let us find out!
- Solar PV air conditioners
This system captures solar energy through the solar PV panels that are mounted on the rooftop of a residential building. The solar energy system converts this direct sunlight from the sun into usable electricity.
This electricity is used by the solar air conditioner to provide a cooling effect in the house.
Some hybrid solar air conditioner systems connect to the commercial grid to provide sufficient power in unfavourable weather conditions too.
- Absorption chillers
This system uses energy from the installed solar panels to power fans and compressor motors. These components of the air conditioner use evaporation and condensation techniques to produce cool air.
Moreover, this solar cooler can run on the power of charged solar batteries.
Effectiveness of a Solar Cooler
Did you know that a solar-powered air conditioner is as effective as a grid-powered air conditioner?
In fact, on hot sunny days, solar panels receive maximum sunlight to generate sufficient electricity for a solar cooler.
On cloudy days, you can depend on solar batteries to provide enough power to run your solar air conditioner.
Savings with a Solar Cooler
Many people hesitate to install a solar energy system for domestic air conditioning because of the considerable initial investment to cover the solar air conditioner price.
This is totally understandable! However, you must also consider the long-term benefits of installing a solar-powered air cooler.
There are several factors to consider when planning to buy a solar-powered air conditioner. They include –
- The size and number of solar panels determine the unit of power transferred to the solar air conditioner. If you install a sufficient size and number of solar panels, you can produce the optimum units of solar energy for your AC.
- The storage capacity of your solar battery is another factor that can reduce your electricity bill for powering your air conditioner. If you have a battery that stores the maximum unit of solar power, you won’t need to depend on grid electricity to run your air cooler when the sun sets.
- The third factor depends on the duration of running the air conditioner. In hotter climates, when the sun emits maximum heat, you may need to run your air conditioner for a longer duration.
Having a conventional air cooler will sharply increase your electricity bill. In contrast, if you invest in a solar cooler system, you will be able to get sufficient energy for running your air conditioner.
Thus, you can save all the money which goes into paying your electricity bill.
So, What Are the Benefits of Using a Solar Cooler?
There are multiple benefits of installing solar coolers, such as ensuring sustainability, easy maintenance, and low grid dependency. These benefits surpass the high solar air conditioner price.
Let’s discuss these benefits in detail.
- – Solar coolers use renewable sources of energy from the sunlight. This reduces the production of greenhouse gases which is common during commercial electricity production.
- – Rooftop solar panels that produce power for solar air conditioners require minimal maintenance. With occasional repair, they offer high efficiency.
- – They depend on power from solar panels. It helps in reducing dependence on fossil fuel-based electricity. Also, people don’t need to pay huge electric bills for home cooling purposes.
Solar coolers are one of the best inventions for providing relief from extreme heat. They also keep the atmosphere healthy by reducing dependency on commercial grid systems.
Many people want to make their homes self-sustaining and energy efficient. If your energy consumption increases primarily due to home cooling, you must consider switching to the use of solar air conditioners.
Q. Why shall I choose solar coolers instead of conventional air conditioning systems?
A solar cooler is an ideal way to save money as it uses energy from solar panels. It reduces your dependency on the utility grid.
Thus, you can manage your expenses by reducing electricity bills.
Q. Is it necessary to install a storage battery for solar air conditioning?
You can run your solar AC directly through the solar panels.
However, to get an uninterrupted power supply at night and during cloudy weather, you must consider attaching a storage battery to your solar energy system.
Q. Can I use power from the utility grid and solar panels to run solar air conditioning?
Certain hybrid solar air conditioners use power from solar panels and utility grids. This gives added benefit to users as they don’t need to rely on only one source to power their ACs.