Solar Hot Water Savings Economics
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| If you have an all-electric home or have electric hot water, hot water is a major expense, accounting for 25% or more of your annual utility bills, according to the State of Texas..
In the Dallas-Fort Worth area, retrofitting a hot water system with one storage tank will cost you around $5000-$6000. The feds will return 30% of that in a tax credit. If you pay $5000, your tax credit will be $1500, making your total cost $3500.
Using figures from State of Texas and Department of Energy (below):
If you are saving 50% of 25% of a $4000 annual electricity bill, that is $500 a year or an 14% return on your money and a seven-year payback, assuming electricity rates do not increase.
If you are saving 80% of 25% of a $4000 annual electricity bill, that is $800 per year or a 23% return on your investment and a 4.4 year payback, again assuming electricity rates do not increase.
Two teen-agers in the home? You are saving more. Only two adults in the home? You are saving less.
Still, a no-brainer.
According to the U. S Department of Energy
"On average, if you install a solar water heater, your water heating bills should drop 50%–80%. Also, because the sun is free, you’re protected from future fuel shortages and price hikes.
"If you’re building a new home or refinancing, the economics are even more attractive. Including the price of a solar water heater in a new 30-year mortgage usually amounts to between $13 and $20 per month. The federal income tax deduction for mortgage interest attributable to the solar system reduces that by about $3–$5 per month. So if your fuel savings are more than $15 per month, the solar investment is profitable immediately. On a monthly basis, you’re saving more than you’re paying."
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