You really canít do any better than solar energy for energy savings and for the environment. Solar water heaters are simple devices that capture the sunís energy to heat water for ordinary use. They are often piped directly into systems with conventional water heaters, lowering your energy costs while still providing hot water on overcast days.
Solar water heaters are extremely cost effective for heating swimming pools, where other types of heating can be very expensive. Solar water heating is an established technology used throughout the world. In California, solar systems are the only type of pool water heating allowed by many local codes. Even the pool built for the Atlanta Olympics is heated with a solar system, though this was a unique, showcase system. While you may think of the large number of units in sunny areas like Florida or California, you may be surprised that even in the rainy areas of the Pacific Northwest, solar water heaters can pay for themselves in less than 10 years. Check with the state energy office and your tax preparer to find out about incentives or tax benefits that apply to solar energy systems.
You can get more information, locate a solar installer, or find a supplier for a do-it-yourself system by contacting the American Solar Energy Society at (303) 443-3130
Source: U.S. EPA, Putting Energy Into Profits, ENERGY STARģ Small Business Guide