Do-It-Yourself Solar Heat

If you're serious about cutting your home heating bills this winter, one of our inexpensive, do-it-yourself projects will help.

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by Unsplash/Bill Mead

The sun’s energy can be captured by homemade solar hot-air collectors and thermosiphoning panels to provide free heat. The units direct air warmed by the sun through a window or wall opening into the adjoining room. If you’re serious about cutting your home heating bills this winter, one of our inexpensive, do-it-yourself projects will help.

Choose DIY to Save Big on Solar Panels for Your Home!
Consider installing your own solar electric system. Doing the work yourself can add up to serious savings.

Build a Simple Solar Air Heater
This low-cost solar air heater plan lets you turn any south wall into a source of free heat.

How to Build a Passive Solar Water Heater
Learn how to build a passive solar water heater. A solar heater can be simple to construct and reduce your utility bills. We’ll explore the various types of solar water heaters, and learn to build an easy and affordable model.

Easy Solar Power
With superefficient peel-and-stick PV sheets, solar power is better than ever!

DIY solar: how to Build Your Own Solar Panel System

More Affordable Solar Power
The cost of solar systems has never been lower — now is the right time to consider solar power for your home.

MOTHER’s Solar Heat Grabber
Build this simple solar heater that hangs outside of a window and sends free heat from the sun into a room.

Building Plan for the Solar Heat Grabber
You can build a heat grabber from this detailed, large-scale plan.

Building Plan for a Solar Hot-air Collector
This shed-type hot air collector will help heat your house in the winter and offer storage space in the summer.

The Hot-Line Solar Collector
This is similar to a conventional flat-plate solar collector, but what makes Lightfoot’s panel unique is that it contains a specially curved reflector which acts to concentrate incoming sunlight on a wedge-shaped absorption tube.

Storm Window Solar Heating Panels
This article details how to use recycled storm windows to make a solar hot-air collector that delivers heat into the home through a vent installed in a south-facing wall or window.

Tap the Sun
Build this wall-mounted, thermosiphoning air panel (TAP) to heat a room in your house with the power of the sun.

Ultra-simple Solar Hot-air Wall Heater
This unit is made by covering a 9-by-14-foot framework of 1-by-6-inch boards with clear plastic, mounting the panel on a south-facing wall and installing top and bottom vents into the home.

Recycled Aluminum Can Solar Hot-Air Heater
Aluminum cans, cut in half, are used to construct the absorber plate for this double-glazed solar hot-air collector. Temperatures in the collector reach more than 200 degrees, and the original unit reduced the heating costs of a New England church by more than 60 percent.

Super Easy, Super Low-cost Solar Hot Air Corrugated Collector
You can build this wall-mounted 8-foot by 12-foot hot air collector, using corrugated fiberglass, to help heat your home.

Automatic Collector Control
The corrugated hot hair collector (above) will be more efficient with this automatic thermostat control.

Inexpensive Solar Hot Air Collector
You can heat a 30-foot by 40-foot building with this wall-mounted, solar collector.