Each solarthermal installation will
need some sort of backup heating system for those situations that the sun is not providing enough heat during bad weather periods. In most cases people already have a "traditional" central heating,
using heating oil or gas.
However, you may also consider
biomass as a backup source of energy. Not only will you become independant from oil or gas prices, you will also find out that there
a subsidies in Valencia for this type of "eco-friendly" burners.
We can offer you two different types of biomass burners.
- The first type of biomass burners as a backup for solar central heating is called "log burner", burning firewood of some 40 - 50 cm in length.
In contrast to an open fireplace, you have a rather big burner, usually located in a seperate heating room. The big advantage of using a log burner as a backup is that the excess heat that is not
directly used in order to heat the house, will be pushed into the big solar buffer tank. That means that your thermal losses are only around 20%, whereas an openfire place in your salon has a thermal
loss of some 80%! Thanks to the fire in your log burner the evening before, the tank will still be warm enough to heat the house next morning. So, you will not need to start the fire again. And if it
will be a sunny day again on Costa Blanca, there will be no need to start the log burner the following evening!
- The second type of biomass burners as a backup for solar central heating is called "pellet burner", burning little "worms" of compressed
chipped wood. Pellet burners are igniting themselves, meaning that you do not have to start a fire like in the case of log burners. They are available as simple "air" pellet burners, generating warm
air after burning the pellets. It will be put as a stand-alone unit into your living room for instance.Other pellet burners have a water-based heat exchanger, allowing them to operate as a true
backup system for your solar central heating.