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Solar water heating is a simple, efficient, affordable technology that provides hot water and saves on energy bills. Columbia Water & Light offers an $800 rebate for a natural gas water heating customer to convert to a solar electric water heating system. All electric customers can receive a $400 rebate for the installation of a solar water heating system.
See our rebate page for more information about the money available for solar water heaters.
How much will I save?
By using a solar water heating system, residents can typically cut their water heating costs by 50-80%. The average Missouri family of four, spending approximately $455 annually on water heating, would save between $227 and $364 each year. Systems will last 25+ years when installed and maintained regularly (every 4-5 years)
How much will it cost to install?
Up front costs vary widely and depend on the type of system installed. Typical costs range from $3,000 to $5,000 for a standard home installation. Exact price quotes can only be obtained from the installer.
A family of four needs two 4’ x 8’ collector panels connected to an 80-gallon storage tank. Residents in Missouri will want freeze protection. Both drain-back and non-toxic antifreeze systems offer freeze protection. A back-up heater is needed for cloudy days. Final system choice depends on the specific application and homeowner needs.
Myth: A solar water system cannot provide hot water and at night.
Truth: During peak daylight hours, your solar system is most efficient. However, because the solar heated water is contained in an insulated storage tank, it is available at any time. In fact, a solar water heater can provide a home with more hot water for longer periods of time than traditional gas and electric systems.
Myth: Solar water panels only work on a home’s roof.
Truth: Solar water panels can be installed anywhere there is direct sunlight. A southern orientation is optimal, but not required.
Columbia Ordinance for rebates and loans - Chapter 27, Section 27-164