90% Of Israeli Homes Have Solar Water Heaters

I recently noted that Hawaii has enacted a law that requires all new homes to install solar water heaters. Eventually, Hawaii may have as many water heaters as Israel, where 90% of homes have solar water heaters installed. When viewed from above, the Jerusalem often glitters with the shine of the thousands of solar heaters that adorn rooftops.

Solar Water Heaters On Roof

These heaters were first installed when the country experienced a fuel supply crisis in the early 1950s. The government responded by severely restricting the times when water could be heated. Israelis in turn responded by purchasing huge quantities of solar water heaters. By 1983, 60% of the population heated their water with the sun. A law was eventually passed requiring the installation of solar water heaters.

Solar Heaters On Apartments In Israel

In 2005, Spain became the second country (after Israel) to require solar water heaters. It also became the first country to require the installation of solar cells for electricity generation in new buildings.

In many climates, a solar heating system can provide a very high percentage (50% to 75%) of domestic hot water energy.

In many northern European countries, solar power is used not only to heat water, but also to provide 15 to 25% of home heating energy.

For more info about different solar water heating systems for the home, see the Solar Water Heating by Bob Ramlow.

23 thoughts on “90% Of Israeli Homes Have Solar Water Heaters”

  1. A polluted society

    The paradox of our time in history is that we have taller buildings, but shorter tempers; wider freeways, but narrower viewpoints.

    We spend more, but have less; we buy more, but enjoy it less.

    We have bigger houses and smaller families; more conveniences, but less time;

    We have more degrees, but less sense; more knowledge, but less judgment; more experts, but more problems; more medicine, but less wellness.

    We drink too much, smoke too much, spend too recklessly, laugh too little, drive too fast, get too angry too quickly, stay up too late, get up too tired, read too seldom, watch TV too much, and pray too seldom.

    We have multiplied our possessions, but reduced our values.

    We talk too much, love too seldom, and hate too often.

    We’ve learned how to make a living, but not a life; we’ve added years to life, not life to years.

    We’ve been all the way to the moon and back, but have trouble crossing the street to meet the new neighbor.

    We’ve conquered outer space, but not inner space.

    We’ve done larger things, but not better things.

    We’ve cleaned up the air, but polluted the soul.

    We’ve split the atom, but not our prejudice.

    We write more, but learn less.

    We plan more, but accomplish less.

    We’ve learned to rush, but not to wait.

    We build more computers to hold more information to produce more copies than ever, but have less communication.

    These are the times of fast foods and slow digestion; tall men, and short character; steep profits, and shallow relationships.

    These are the times of world peace, but domestic warfare; more leisure, but less fun; more kinds of food, but less nutrition.

    These are days of two incomes, but more divorce; of fancier houses, but broken homes.

    These are days of quick trips, disposable diapers, throw-away morality, one-night stands, overweight bodies, and pills that do everything from cheer to quiet, to kill.

    It is a time when there is much in the show window and nothing in the stockroom; a time when technology can bring this letter to you, and a time when you can choose either to share this insight, or to just ignore it.

  2. Consumer’s responsibility to conserve energy

    Consumers coming to the utilities for innovative ways to educate the consumer first of all, in other words some form of education to conserve energy to assist with the energy crisis, and then also the energy devices that one can implement either those which are relatively inexpensive or those that are more expensive.

    What are some of the options consumers have?

    If we have a look at just the simple basic habits – that’s switching off lights, buy low voltage bulbs (CFL-LED), switch off faucets, put timers on and or photocells, when you fill up the kettle only boil the water you require for your cup of coffee. I think this is a way of life, and it is about lifestyle – perhaps we are accustomed to something different, it’s now about saying “how can I be more energy efficient?” because I understand as a consumer that the crisis we are currently faced with at the moment goes beyond the responsibility of the utilities. This is the consumer’s responsibility – it’s not going to be solved overnight, but as consumers we can in fact take that role. Our appeal to homeowners is to say “how are we in fact conserving energy, and contributing or assisting in actually solving/minimizing the problem?” If each and every one went a little bit of the way – perhaps an energy saving of 5% or 10% can easily go a long way to assist in the energy crisis.

    We still have to depend on wind turbines and solar power – we have batteries that we need to get in order to help to save those power needs as well – are we able to afford them?

    I think when we have a look at things like a wind turbine and solar panels those are expensive items – but if you take the average house 20% of the electricity is actually used in the lights. If you used a low voltage bulb for example you’d save 650% of the actual lighting energy that you require – those are inexpensive ways to go about it.

    When we use our vehicle, try to accomplish multiple errands at one time, you will save fuel and wear.

    We also must look at conserving water – this is resource that sustains life, it must be preserved and not waited or abused. See if you can harvest and utilize rainwater.

    YJ Draiman, Energy Analyst

  3. Hi

    Solar hot water systems are Eco-friendly. Solar water heaters make use of radiation of sun in order to heat the domestic water. Solar water heaters Reduces carbon footprint and it saves fossil fuels. Solar energy is a strong source of green energy which can be regenerated from sun and it doesn’t provide any damage to our environment. solar hot water heater are fuelled by sun energy and it doesn’t produce any pollution.

  4. Solar water heating is an improvement of traditional water heating. It is just extremely unreliable compared to something like geothermal water heating. The other fantastic thing with geothermal is that the same system can also provide heating and air conditioning.

  5. in Mexico the federal goberment with the INFONAVIT support the installation of such systems with the so-called green mortgages. his plan is that within four years all the houses of social interest have installed a solar heater.

    Greetings from Mexico

    en México el gobieno federal junto con el infonavit apoyan la instalación de este tipo de sistemas con las denominadas hipotecas verdes. su plan es que dentro de cuatro años todas las casas de interes social tengan un calentador solar instalado.

    Saludos desde méxico

  6. Hi,
    I would like to use your photographs of solar water heaters for our publication “Post Carbon Futures”.
    The book will paint a picture of what the world might look like in 40 years if we tackle the problem of climate change successfully. The book is supposed to be a “one-stop shop” for young people who want to know about what climate change is and how it might affect us, what we need to do to combat climate change and what individuals and governments are actually doing.
    Please let me know if you would like anymore information


  7. Solar water heating should be catching on faster in the U.S. Installers are getting better about providing reasonable prices. Local incentives, in Austin, for example pay for nearly 40% of the system, coupled with the Federal tax credit, 60% of the system is paid for. Payback time is then reduced to 2-3 years. More information on the Austin energy solar rebate can be found here http://www.sunbelt-solar.com/cost.html

  8. Wonderful in practice, but those rooftops are ugly. Luckily, new “underroof” solar thermal systems are being developed. They use plastic PEX tubing atop the roof sheathing (but underneath the roof coating), making them invisible to passersby.

    What’s problematic with solar hot water is the inability to temper your demand. There are systems here in the Mid-Atlantic that produce so much hot water that it’s wasted.

  9. Yes! Keeping in mind the drastic environmental changes and rising fuel prices going Solar is one option open to all at minimal investments. The Solar Water heating systems are so easy to install and most of them come in a Do-it Yourself kit, With the technological advancement the once heavy, bulky hard to move panels are now available widely in light weight easy to carry by one personal only packages. The advancement in technology is not only limited to light weight, but for those concern about the aesthetics of the panels, the good news is that the panels are now available with a variety of trim colors to choose from and can be easily matched to your roof. Saving about $25.oo on ones electricity bill every month on a residence of 4. We all use hot water, as one of our basic needs and what can be a better way, than helping our environment, saving our resources and ourself’s some money other than by investing in a Solar Water Heating System.
    There are a couple useful websites I’m aware off, that I would like to share with you
    1. http://www.dsireusa.org – is a comprehensive source of information on state, local
    , utility ans federal incentives that promote renewable engery ans energy efficieny.
    2. http://www.powerpartnerssolar.com – one of the many manufacturers of certified Solar Water Heating Systems available. One place I saw the light weight panels and trim color options I was mentioning earlier.
    Lastly, the local utilites in some areas also provide additional rebates and incentives for adding a Solar Water Heating Sytem to your exisitng water tank.
    Keep the look out on. Feel Good and save- money for you, environment for us.

  10. Renewable Energy Manufactures/suppliers should use their own product to manufacture.

    The manufacturers’ of Solar Panels and other forms of renewable energy with related support products manufactures/suppliers – should have at least the decency to practice what they preach what they market to the public.
    That would be the best marketing approach I can think off.
    If they believe in the product they manufacture/sell, they should utilize it to its fullest potential.
    It will give the manufacturer the actual experience of utilizing the product on a daily basis, view and experience any shortcoming or improvements that are needed, implement the improvements and capitalize on that revision to improve the product and its performance.
    This will instill confidence in the public to purchase the product.

    Jay Draiman, Energy Analyst

    As with any new technology, PV will become more efficient, cheaper and cleaner to produce. In order for this to happen we (Governments / NGOs / Individuals) need to invest more time and money into making PV viable, e.g. through increased incentives, regulations, technical standards, R&D, manufacturing processes and generating consumer demand.
    Just like the automobile industry, the manufacture used its own product.
    Over the years the automobile industry and technology has evolved from the early 1900 to what it is today the year 2008.
    I predict that in 10 years the automobile we know today will change drastically for the better, with new fuel technology and other modification that will improve its scales of economy and features.

  11. “Can the energy crises be overcome?” – I say yes!

    I think that the public, the government and corporate America should treat these energy crises as a danger to our way of life.

    During World War II, the America we know unified in a common cause. Everyone rolled their sleeves to chip in and Americans produced an enormous amount of hardware for the war effort. “I see a solution within 36 months”.

    If we as a nation can really appreciate and understand the severity and enormity of the energy crises, the catastrophic impact on our economic stability and civilization,
    we must unite and do whatever is necessary to produce other forms of energy and overcome this energy and economic crises “by putting all politics and egos aside and look for the good of our nation”.

    Jay Draiman, Northridge, CA

    Soaring gas prices, record oil company profits, unsustainable trade deficits, soldiers dying in Iraq’s deserts and catastrophic climate change— conservative energy policy is running us toward ruin. We urgently need to stop subsidizing dirty fossil fuels and start investing in a clean energy economy. In 1961, President Kennedy challenged us to send a man to the moon within a decade and launched the Apollo plan to make it happen. Now we need a similar vision—an Apollo initiative for energy independence, mobilizing science and technology and investing in energy efficiency and alternative energy.
    The benefits are immense. We can create jobs, capture growing global green energy markets, eliminate our dependence on Persian Gulf oil, reduce our trade deficit, improve our children’s health and end the catastrophic threat of global warming. It’s time to act.
    “Determination and perseverance will bring your goal to fruition” – never give-up

  12. A more efficient and cost effective renewable energy system is needed. R2
    A more efficient and cost effective renewable energy system is needed.
    To accelerate the implementation of renewable electric generation with added incentives and a FASTER PAYBACK – ROI. (A method of storing energy, would accelerate the use of renewable energy) A greater tax credit, accelerated depreciation, funding scientific research and pay as you save utility billing. (Reduce and or eliminates the tax on implementing energy efficiency, eliminate increase in Real estate Taxes for energy efficiency improvement). Tax incentive and rebates have to be tripled.
    In California, you also have the impediment, that when there are an interruption of power supply by the Utility you the consumer cannot use your renewable energy system to provide power.
    In today’s technology there is automatic switching equipment that would disconnect the consumer from the grid, which would permit renewable generation for the consumer even during power interruption. Energy storage technology must advance substantially. “Energy conservation through energy storage”.
    New competition for the world’s limited oil and natural gas supplies is increasing global demand like never before. Reserves are dwindling. These and other factors are forcing energy prices to skyrocket here at home. It’s affecting not just the fuel for our cars and homes, it is affecting food prices and it’s driving up electricity costs, too. A new world is emerging. The energy decisions our nation makes today will have huge implications into the next century. We must expedite the implementation of renewable energy.
    A synchronous system with batteries allows the blending of a PV with grid power, but also offers the advantage of “islanding” in case of a power failure. A synchronous system automatically disconnects the utility power from the house and operates like an off-grid home during power failures. This system, however, is more costly and loses some of the efficiency advantages of a battery-less system.
    We’re surrounded by energy — sun, wind, water. The problem is harnessing it in an economical way.
    Jay Draiman, Northridge, CA
    June 30, 2008

    Jay Draiman Energy Development Specialist provides expertise in all sectors of the energy and utility industry.
    Over 20 years experience. Specializing in: Energy Audit, Telecom audit, Utility bills audit and review for refunds or better rates, Demand Management, Energy Efficiency review and implementation, Renewable Energy, Lighting Retrofit, Solar Energy, Wind Energy, Fuel-Cell, Thermal imaging, Rainwater harvesting, Energy conservation, Ice Storage, Water conservation methods, Energy and telecom audit and procurement
    Much is at stake when policy makers, regulators, and corporate executives face the challenges of evolving energy markets and efficiency.


  13. http://www.txspc.com

    Texas Solar Power Co. specializes in Solar Thermal and Solar Electric installations of all sizes.

    While Spain and Israel mandate solar options, the U.S. kills the one subsidy that is keeping the young PV market alive and well.

    It’s time to re-consider your priorities, America.
    We can help.

    Texas Solar Power Co. “Power to the People” Since 1995

  14. Americans are beginning to realize that their lives have been accelerated to a frenzied wasteful rate by massive bombardment of advertising, and their susceptibility to letting the ads dictate needs and values, over commonsense and logic. As Americans slow down and re-evaluate each situation, things like solar hot water heaters and solar/LED battery lighting systems will be adopted as the realistic sensible thing to do rather than the ‘gung-ho, in style, damn the cost, better than next doors,’ product selection method promoted by advertisers and less than honest retailers. Israelies on the other hand are not building McMansions to 12 year old little girls specifications, the are in a survival situation and face a different reality, so necessity being the mother of invention, driven by realistic practicality, they adapt in a most successful way, as they have down through the centuries, and it is this practical flexibility that we no longer see in the American people that will be their downfall, if they don’t take this page from the Israeli handbook of survival and go solar!

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