Storage Tanks – Energy Buffer Tanks
Using water or glycol as a heating fluid has great advantages. It is cost effective means to transfer energy from one source to another. The advantage of hydronic heating is also that its energy can be stored. In a simple radiant heat system we use concrete mass as a storage medium. However when we encounter houses with multiple heating requirements such as domestic hot water, in floor heat, fan coil radiators, pools and hot tubs, we need a method to harness the energy. This is done in a storage tank. The larger the storage tank, the larger the more energy we can store.
Storing energy is very useful especially in application such as cold climate heat pump, geothermal and solar thermal heating applications. For one it allows us to reduce the short cycling of the compressor by adding more mass to heat. FACT – shorter heat pump cycles (on/off) cost more energy and lead to sorter life. By having a larger mass to heat the compressor turns on and runs longer as it has more to heat up. This reduces operating costs and extends the compressor life span. An energy storage tank acts like a large battery an is also useful to offset the supply and demand cycles of heating. In the winter the days are sunnier and warmer and nights are colder and dark. So if you are using an air source heat pump or solar thermal system the system will have a greater chance to capture heat energy during the day and at night when the home needs more demand it will draw this demand from the storage tank.
In many cases an inexpensive water tank will suffice as a storage means however they lack the sophistication that a proper storage tank can provide. Dedicated geothermal, solar thermal or Air source heat pump tanks will help to maximize the energy performance including features such as higher insulation, immersion probes for temperature sensors and optional internal heat exchangers.
Our SolarStor and GeoStor Water tanks are made in USA and have the required seal for ULS and CSA standards to be used both as free standing energy buffer tanks or potable domestic hot water tanks. For more performance we also have the Thermo2000 EcoUltra Buffer Back up boiler tanks. These tanks are ideal for our Arctic Heat Pumps and can provide up to 29 kw of back up heating for large residential or commercial systems. With added features such as on demand hot water supply and full hydronic system control the EcoUltra is truly the only boiler buffer tank solution available in North America.
Back up Heating Element
Hydronic heating systems are considered the most reliable forms to heat a home or shop. However seldom do they come with back up heat source. All our SolarStor and GeoStor storage tanks include a 4.5 Kw heating element that can be activate should a failure occur. For customers that need a complete backup solution the EcoUltra is the superior choice and pairs well with any cold temperature heat pump such as the Arctic Heat Pump. With available back up heating configuration of 3-29Kw, it can handle homes from 800-6000 square feet.
Internal heat Exchangers
All our tanks are available with a bottom and top heat exchanger to integrate different heating methods. A bottom heat exchanger is used to easily adapt to a solar thermal system to assist with the heating of the tank and reduce the energy costs even further. A top heat exchanger can be used move heat energy form the storage tank to heat a zone such as a pool or a hot tub. In either case the heat exchangers provide flexibility to expand a system in the future.