Solar Water Heaters in India: A Comprehensive Guide (with Best Options & Comparison)

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Harnessing the sun’s energy for hot water is a practical and sustainable solution, and India, with its abundant sunshine, is a prime candidate for solar water heaters. This guide dives deep into everything you need to know about solar water heaters in India, empowering you to make informed decisions for your home or business. We’ll also explore some of the best solar water heater brands in India and compare them with Atlantic (ATBL), a well-known water heater brand.

solar water heater India

What is a Solar Water Heater?

A solar water heater utilizes solar energy to heat water for domestic or commercial purposes. Here’s a breakdown of its key components:

  • Solar Collectors: Flat plate collectors are the most common type in India. They consist of a metal absorber plate covered with a glass sheet. Sunlight heats the absorber plate, transferring heat to a circulating fluid.
  • Storage Tank: The heated fluid transfers its thermal energy to water stored in a well-insulated tank. This hot water is then used for various applications.
  • Insulation: High-quality insulation around the storage tank minimizes heat loss, ensuring hot water remains usable for longer durations.
  • Control System: Some models feature controllers that regulate water flow and system operation.
solar water heater India

Benefits of Solar Water Heaters in India

  • Reduced Electricity Bills: Solar water heaters significantly reduce dependence on electric geysers, leading to substantial electricity cost savings.
  • Clean and Sustainable: Solar energy is a renewable resource, making solar water heaters an eco-friendly choice with a minimal carbon footprint.
  • Government Incentives: The Indian government offers subsidies and tax benefits to encourage the adoption of solar water heaters.
  • Low Maintenance: Solar water heaters require minimal maintenance compared to conventional electric or gas water heaters.
  • Long Lifespan: With proper care, a solar water heater can last for over 15 years.

Types of Solar Water Heaters Available in India

  • Flat Plate Collectors (FPC): The most common and cost-effective option, suitable for most domestic applications.
  • Evacuated Tube Collectors (ETC): More efficient than FPCs, particularly in colder regions, but come at a higher cost.
  • Integrated Collector-Storage (ICS) Systems: Compact units where the collector and storage tank are combined. Well-suited for areas with limited space.
solar water heater India

Factors to Consider When Choosing a Solar Water Heater


  • Start by accurately estimating your daily hot water needs. Consider the number of occupants in your home and their usage patterns (showers, baths, kitchen use, etc.).
  • Undersizing your system will leave you short, while oversizing creates unnecessary expense.
  • A general rule of thumb is 75-100 liters of tank capacity per person, but it’s advisable to consult with a solar professional for an accurate assessment.

Collector Type (FPC vs. ETC):

Flat Plate Collectors (FPC): These are the most common in India due to their affordability and efficiency in sunny climates. If you are in a region with a moderate climate and minimal freezing periods, FPC can be a great option.

Evacuated Tube Collectors (ETC): Offer enhanced efficiency due to their vacuum-sealed tubes. These are more suitable for colder climates or areas with frequent cloudy weather. They come with a higher upfront cost but pay off in improved efficiency.

Brand and Warranty:

  • Opt for reputable brands known for their quality solar water heaters.
  • A solid warranty (5+ years on the tank, 2+ years on components) offers peace of mind.
  • Consider certifications, like the BIS (Bureau of Indian Standards) mark that guarantees compliance with safety and performance standards.

Roof Space and Orientation:

  • South-facing roofs receive the most sunlight, ideal for solar installations.
  • Ensure you have enough unobstructed space to accommodate the collector panels.
  • Collectors should be tilted at an angle to maximize sunlight absorption.

Government Subsidies:

  • India’s Ministry of New and Renewable Energy (MNRE) may offer subsidies and financial assistance.
  • Explore both national schemes and any state-specific incentives to determine eligibility and reduce your upfront costs.


  • In tropical or hot climates, FPCs generally yield excellent results.
  • If you live in colder regions or areas with frequent cloud cover, the higher efficiency of ETC systems might be worth the added investment.

Water hardness

If your water supply has a high mineral content (hard water), you might need specific materials for your storage tank and plumbing to prevent corrosion and scaling. Discuss this with your solar installer.

Backup Options:

Solar isn’t always consistent. Consider how you’ll handle those low-sun days. Some solar water heaters have built-in electric backups; others might be compatible with your existing geyser.

Professional Installation:

A properly installed system is key to long-term performance and warranty adherence. Improper installation can void manufacturer warranties. Always choose certified solar professionals with a track record of successful installations.

Additional Tips:

  • Get Quotes: Compare prices and specifications from multiple vendors, factoring in installation costs.
  • Reviews: Look for online reviews and ratings for different brands and installation companies in your area.

Best Solar Water Heater Brands in India (2024)

Here’s a comparison of some of the leading solar water heater brands in India, alongside Atlantic (ATBL), a prominent water heater brand:

BrandTechnologyCapacity Range (Liters)Warranty (Years)Price Range (₹)Comparison with ATBL
SupremeFPC & ETC100 – 3005 – 7₹18,000 – ₹45,000Offers competitive pricing and good warranty. ATBL may have a wider range of electric water heaters.
RacoldFPC & ETC150 – 5003 – 5₹20,000 – ₹50,000Known for good quality and customer service. ATBL might be a better choice for instant electric geysers.
HavellsFPC100 – 2002 – 5₹15,000 – ₹30,000Renowned brand offering reliable FPC systems. ATBL focuses more on electric and gas water heaters.
VguardFPC & ETC100 – 2505 – 7₹22,000 – ₹40,000Popular brand with a strong presence in the solar water heater market. ATBL may not have a direct solar water heater competitor.
Atlantic (ATBL)N/AN/AN/AN/ANot a major player in the solar water heater market. They excel in electric and gas water heaters.
solar water heater comparison

Installation and Maintenance of Solar Water Heaters

  • Professional Installation: Hire certified solar installers who ensure proper system sizing, installation, and safety measures.
  • Regular Maintenance: Periodic cleaning of the solar collectors and checking for leaks are crucial for optimal performance.
  • Manufacturer’s Recommendations: Follow the manufacturer’s guidelines for maintenance to ensure a long lifespan for your solar water heater.

Costs Associated with Solar Water Heaters in India

The initial cost of a solar water heater in India typically ranges from ₹15,000 to ₹50,000, depending on capacity, technology, brand, and installation complexity. However, government subsidies and tax benefits can significantly offset the initial investment.

solar water heater India

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) about Solar Water Heaters in India

  • How much hot water can a solar water heater generate? The amount of hot water generated depends on the collector area, sunlight availability, and weather conditions. A typical system can provide 50-100 liters of hot water per day.
  • Do solar water heaters work in cloudy weather? Yes, but they will generate less hot water. On cloudy days, a backup heating source like an electric geyser might be necessary.
  • Can I get a solar water heater installed in an apartment? Yes, consider compact ICS systems or explore community solar water heating solutions for apartment complexes.
  • What are the different government schemes promoting solar water heaters? The Ministry of New and Renewable Energy (MNRE) offers the Solar Water Heater Programme, providing subsidy support for domestic and institutional installations.


Solar water heaters offer a compelling solution for hot water needs in India. Their eco-friendly nature, significant cost savings, and government incentives make them a sound investment. By considering the factors mentioned in this guide, you can make an informed decision and harness the power of the sun for your home or business.

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