Compost Water Heater

Here is a report on MOTHER EARTH NEWS' third attempt at building and using a compost water heater.



070 compost heated water - new compost pile
MOTHER EARTH NEWS' newest compost water heater mound shown here partially completed is a low, rectangular heap with sloping sides (a shape that eliminates the need for a cage) and two flat coils of polyethylene tubing buried inside it. The left inset is of the tubing connections. The right inset is of an old water tank converted into a heat exchange.
PHOTO: MOTHER EARTH NEWS STAFF
070 compost heated water - plastic wrapped heater
Our second Jean Pain-style compost heater will be a hard act to follow! Supported by a wire frame and sheathed in black plastic, the circular mound maintained its highest temperature of 140°F for almost two months. Inset: thermometer.
MOTHER EARTH NEWS STAFF
070 compost heated water - connecting hoses
The rings are connected to insulated hoses which will carry water in and out of the pile.
MOTHER EARTH NEWS STAFF
070 compost heated water - heat exchanger
The warmed water travels 80 feet and then is circulated through a heat exchanger inside this converted water heater.
MOTHER EARTH NEWS STAFF
070 compost heated water - thermometer
The thermometer researchers used to monitor temperatures inside the mound.
MOTHER EARTH NEWS STAFF
070 compost heated water - diagram 1
Diagram shows setup of water circulation system from the compost water heater to the yurt.
MOTHER EARTH NEWS STAFF
070 compost heated water - diagram 2
 Results from tracking the performance of the compost water heater.
MOTHER EARTH NEWS STAFF











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