Cebu South Rd, South Granada, Boljoon +63 (999) 323-5616        

Whats Going on Around Cebu Philippines

Solar Thermo Philippines Hot Water system roof Top
6 Feb

Granada Beach Resort Offering Hot Water in the Philippines, Whaat?

There are many things people living in developed country take forgranted.  It isn’t until you live in (or visit) a developing country when you realized how cushy life is in Europe or North America. Filtered drinking water, blazing internet, reliable power, timely services and of course hot water.

Chris, you mean not everywhere in the world has hot water, Philippines included?  Great question. Actually, no. For most areas around the Philippines hot water is a luxery, including many 2-4 star resorts.

The Decision.

Solar hot water Philippines Beach ResortDuring the discussions to move from Belize to the Philippines we researched the area and the resort property thouroughly.  The previous managers advertised solar hot water so we were optimistic about not relying on cold showers.  Upon our arrival we were disappointed to see the hot water system they were advsertising was not of a professional quality.  We are not ones to make snap judgements so we gave it the benifit of the doubt and decided to see how well it worked for the resorts needs. Could this system provide hot water in the Philippines?

The first few months were OK.  Of course this was the hot season with plenty of sun and a cooler shower was a welcome refreshment.  As the summer temperatures began to decline it was becoming quickly apparent the current hot water system was a glaring fail. After 6 months of cold showers it was time for a change.

Vicky began doing what she was born to do, shop.  After a few weeks of back and forth discussing new solar hotwater systems, LPG units, or even traditional electric water tanks with several heating manufacturers and suppliers we made our decision.  We are going to stick with solar, but upgrade the system to a professional unit(s).

Why Solar?

Vicky and myself are not by any means “Tree Hugging Enviromentalists,” we are however realists and reconize the earth has a finite supply of natural resourses and developing countries often have an over reliance on these depleting energy sources.  By sticking with solar we want to lower the areas reliance on coal, desiel and natural gas, the main source of power for Cebu.

What Makes The New System Better?

Solar Thermo Philippines Hot Water system roof TopOur old solar hot water heater (if you can call it that) was mearly a set of uninsulated black pipes laid out in the sun to heat.  Being uninsulated when the sun begins to sets the pipes begin giving away heat rather than retaining it.  Not to mention, the black pipes never seemed to get super hot, so how efficeint is it really?  Our new system designed and manufactured by Solar Thermal out of Manilla is a completely insulated system that relies on solar convection to actually circulate and seperate the hot from the cold water. Being an insulated system the manufactuers rep claims it will keep water hot for 72 hours! Do I belive this… not really, but if I can keep the water hot for 12-24 hours and overnight we are already winning.  We have also upped the volume.  By our best guess (using sophmore year geometry calculations) we figured the old system held around 600-700 liters.  Our new system is now nearly 1000 liters, a significant upgrade.

The Waiting Game

After finally deciding on the systems we placed our order, suspected arrival time, December.  Actual arrival, First week of January.  Not too bad.  But then it sat, waiting.

As neither Vicky or myself has trained as a plumber and with as much money as we invested in this new system we decided to pay the company to not only make the product but to also to do the installation.  They were scheduled to arrive around the 14th of January to complete the job.  {Cue crickets chirping} silence on the instal front, no communication, no time updates, nothing.  We reached out and learned they would be delayed but no one new for how long.  As I mentioned earlier, time and schedules take on a different meaning in developing countries.

The first week of February reached and still no solid time frame for the technitions to come and install the system.  How hard can it really be?  Time to check the internet.  No on-line instruction manual for this particular manufacture system, but there is one guy who documented how he installed his system by a different manufacture. I opened the boxes and started assembling the frames by only looking at the advertising pictures on the internet.  Not too bad.  Once the first one was built the second two went even quicker.

The next day we began installing the the heating systems. With a little help from my maintance crew we had the tanks in place, the solar tubes installed and covered to prevent overheating while they were empty, ready for the plumbing and piping.  The only tricky part were the assistance tanks for keeping the system automatically filled, but not overflowing. Back to the photos. Soon even these were plumbed and ready.  Open the valve… trickle, trickle, trickle.  Hmm, that’s going to take a while.  Time to put my engineer hat on.  A few minutes later after a trip to the local hardware store we were in business.

The Outcome

Solar Thermo Solar System Our new 1000 liter Philippines hot water system made in the Philippines and installed by a foreigner is up and flowing.  We are on our second morning with and at 6am before the sun was up to start warming again the top vent tubes were still hot, very hot.  I guess we can check hold hot water over night off our list of demands.  Along with a new assistance pump we have bumped up our hot water pressure to hopefully delay the time waiting for the hot water to work its way through the building to the shower head.  Our first guest reviews this morning were positive about the temperature and going forward adding a second day in the sun the manufacture tells us we should start to see even hotter water temperatures.  Did we just add a degree of comfort and luxury with our new Philippines hot water system… we hope so.  Make your reservation to see how well out new system produces hot water and tell us how well it works.

 

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