Most water conservation measures in the home are flow limiting or volume limiting devices and or appliances. Low flow fixtures reduce the flow and thus can reduce water wastage if the home owner would otherwise leave the water on at a high flow rate. It doesn't save you any water if you are just filling a pot or a glass, it just takes you longer.
Double pane windows are a must in every home. In older homes you are losing a lot of energy out your single pane windows. Unless they have been taken care of over the years some of the glazing will have fallen out. These types of windows never fit very well to begin with and they have just gotten worse over the years. They are made out of wood and wood will shrink in the summer and expand in the winter, thus not sealing well anytime of the year. Upgrading to new vinyl windows will decrease the amount of weather entering the home and the amount of ultraviolet also entering the home, less solar gain the less you have air condition your home. The less heat out the windows in the winter the less you have to heat.
Solar Thermal is mostly used to heat water. There are several different types of Hot Water Systems and any Solar contractor in your area can tell you what type of system is right for you. Typically a Solar Hot Water System can save you 50%25-90%25 of the cost to heat your water. It also carries a 30%25 tax credit and in my opinion it is the best place to start when considering Solar.It saves you money, and the return on investment is far better than any savings plan available today. These systems will last 20 years. They are paying you money back long after they have paid themselves off.
Because Rheem hot water services have been known to use solar energy to heat water, you get to reduce your consumption of hot water by 50%25-90%25. This means that you will get to use up to 90%25 less of electricity or gas that needs to be produced. This, however, depends on your location.
Now when you turn on the tap you have instant hot water. Since the pipe had to get filled with hot water anyway, you don't waste any extra energy, in fact, you often get your hot water much more quickly and thus you actually save a little energy. Because the pump only runs for a few seconds and only when you demand hot water, it consumes very little electricity; typically for a family of four it would be less than .00 per year.
I personally can't understand why anyone would want one of these warm water circulating systems. They are virtually the same as the old full time circulating systems except instead of running continuously they run for a short time periodically all day. These systems monitor the water temperature at the fixture, and when the temperature drops to a pres-set temperature, usually around 85 degrees, the pump comes on and pumps until the water temperature reaches say 95 degrees and then shuts off. At the moment the pump shuts off you have 95 degree water available, not exactly hot, but not cold. The hot water will be probably be only a few seconds behind it.
You will have a broad range of pressure and power to use with commercial (professional) machines, but most of the time you won't need the highest setting. All too often people, homeowners and pros alike, will turn up the pressure thinking that more must be better. This isn't always the case.
Below are a few of the things that solar thermal engineers will need to know. Some of this information can be obtained through your utility. Your solar installer will help you obtain the relevant data or documents.