Save money with solar drying!

chauffage solaire econome sunaero

Discover solar drying technology for wood, laundry and food, and save money!

SunAéro solar heating technology paves the way for new drying applications. Its operation is based on temperature and humidity sensors. The humidity level in a home should be between 40% and 60%. For drying wood, linen or food, the humidity level can be lowered and the temperature threshold raised as required. This makes SunAéro the ideal tool for all types of drying, and means you can build your own multi-purpose drying hut in your garden. After reviewing the principles and benefits of solar drying, we’ll look at how to use this technology to dry firewood, laundry and food.

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Solar dryer operating principle

The solar drying method uses indirect solar radiation. The principle of this technique is to collect solar energy to heat a volume of air with solar collectors, then create a flow of warm air from the collector to the drying chamber. This flow of warm air rapidly dehumidifies the air inside the drying chamber.

Based on this principle, the SunAéro is an aerothermal solar heater designed to propel up to 200 m3 per hour of warm air into a room, completely autonomously. The SunAéro is modular, allowing 1, 2 or 3 collectors to be connected in series to build a drying hut from 5 to 30 sq.m. It can be installed on the facade, roof or ground, and must face south, south-east or south-west. The SunAéro produces a flow of warm air regulated from +20 to +40°C above the ambient temperature, depending on the intensity of the sunshine and the parameters set by the user. When there’s not enough light, the SunAéro switches off automatically. SunAéro technology allows you to control and monitor your drying process with an automatic temperature and humidity control program, as well as remote control.

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Solar drying of firewood

The natural drying time for wood is generally between 2 and 3 years, to achieve a moisture content of 20% or less and optimal combustion. Softwoods dry faster (12-18 months) than hardwoods such as oak (24 months minimum).

Artificial drying is only used by professionals for joinery wood. There are several types of dryer powered by different energy sources: biomass, fossil fuels or solar energy. This technique reduces drying times to just a few weeks. Another advantage is that the wood stays clean and there’s no risk of rotting.

SunAéro technology makes artificial drying of firewood accessible to private individuals. There are many advantages to using dry wood for heating:
– dry wood gives off twice as much heat as damp wood
– dry wood dirties the heater less
– damp wood reduces heating performance by 30%.
– Dry wood combustion generates less smoke
– Damp wood releases more pollutants
With a moisture content of over 50%, however, the price of wet wood (green wood) is much more attractive. The use of a solar dryer, which uses free energy, makes it possible to obtain dry wood at lower cost.

For a successful drying process, it’s advisable to invest in a moisture tester, which costs between EUR 10 and EUR 20. This device accurately measures the water content of the wood and determines the remaining drying time required. Another important factor to consider is the size of your logs: the smaller they are, the faster they will dry.

The wood is cut between November and March, so the solar dryer is ideal for use in the spring and throughout the summer: you’ll have well-dried firewood before the onset of winter.

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Solar laundry drying

Using an electric tumble dryer is very practical, but has the major drawbacks of high power consumption and high running costs.

Drying clothes outdoors is fast and efficient on sunny days. This method has the advantage of being economical and ecological, but has two major drawbacks:
– The sun’s ultraviolet rays can fade fabrics and colors over time.
– Drying in the sun can harden certain fabrics and reduce their lifespan.
To protect the fibers and avoid shrinkage, the ideal drying temperature is between 50 and 60°C.
Here again, a drying hut equipped with SunAéro solar air heating offers a practical, high-performance and economical alternative for drying laundry:
– Indoor temperature does not exceed 60°C
– Laundry dries in a few hours in fine weather
– Linen is protected from rain and pollens for allergy sufferers
– Laundry does not harden
– No risk of discoloration of clothing from direct sunlight
– The solar dryer can be used all year round

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Solar food drying / dehydration

A drying hut equipped with SunAéro aerothermal solar heating can also be transformed into a high-capacity solar dehydrator for food preservation. It can be used from the first harvest in summer through to late autumn.

Drying food at low temperatures, between 40 and 60°C, preserves its nutritional quality. Minerals and vitamins are largely preserved with a more concentrated flavour, as well as the benefits and properties of the plants.

Thanks to the closed-system design, food contamination is avoided or minimized. What’s more, unlike open sun-drying systems, food is not vulnerable to rain and dust.

Advantages of solar drying

SunAéro technology is truly multi-purpose: as well as being a solution for heating and dehumidifying a home, SunAéro can be used for all types of drying: wood, linen or food. SunAéro uses free energy and saves energy all year round, while emitting 0 carbon. Aerothermal solar heating is a long-term investment, with a lifespan of over 20 years and minimal maintenance. Think about it if you want to control your energy budget with the comfort of a sustainable solution.