Video of a man with brains, a simple, cheap way to have a solar shower while living in a van.
This video is hot, smart, efficient, and intelligent, this is how solar was meant to be, not all the bells and whistle, just sustainable and cheap.
Any one-way valve´s details or anything else on this shower - construction plans or something posted on the Net maybe (You Tube or Instructables)? Thanks.
This person has made this more complicated than needed in my opinion, gravity flow would work. Plus if the tube is half full, it would make a huge water flow problem, however, in principal, he is on the right track. I am thinking about having three ways to heat water. Two gallons on top of a propane stove, 110 Hot Water element in a bucket, and a concentric circle of black PVC on the roof... And, 4-5 one liter bottle on top of the roof.
Do you want the plans?
Comments on Yahoo Groups VanDwellers were generally positive -- one remark mentioned an improvement idea: don´t center the water spigot in the tube end cap as pictured but give it lower placement because only about half the water in the tube would drain by gravity (perhaps if pressurized this isn't much of a problem and better drainage could be had by elevating one end up higher than the other with blocks or even wedging along it´s length as the black pipe may stretch once filled with heated water in the Sun). Another comment stated that PVC pipe isn´t rated for pressurization much and estimated that 10 ft might be more optimal for sufficient water volume. The concentric PVC water pipe coil on the roof will work - Friends with this strung out on their roofs during Summer have had very hot water - it´s a batch system you can refill/reheat for greater hot water volume as needed - depends how much volume a particular tube length will hold vs the surface area of the Van's roof. Of course, one would need pump or thermosiphon recirculation to a tank for accumulating greater amt's of hot water for some uses but again, perhaps needless complication.
There is a large water bed like water bladder for rooftop or pickup bed that forestry supply companies sell for remote locations but that´s overkill while mobileand camp unless you find you want to plop down, Camp for a season... KOA's and Truck Stops sell shower facility quick use.
After a surf or paddle in a cold body of water, what a perfect device to have on the roof racks with the boards or boats. Nobody I've seen uses a small capacity solar bladders, but I think you could sell thousands of these on the W. and E. Coasts to kayakers and surfers. The comforts of a 8 or 10 min. warm shower are never more appreciated than when you've been in the cold water for hours.