FAQ's

What is Sun Bandit®?

In our quest to provide FREE daily energy to the citizens of the World and reduce our dependence upon fossil fuel, we developed Sun Bandit® — a revolutionary new solar patent pending hybrid technology that changes the way energy is captured, stored and utilized. Sun Bandit® maximizes the FREE energy of the sun to provide clean, quiet, dependable hot water day after day, year after year.


See What is Sun Bandit® (video) to learn more.

How does Sun Bandit® work?

Sun Bandit® patent pending micro-grid technology is specifically designed to capture the FREE energy of the sun and transform that energy into clean, FREE usable hot water.

See How Sun Bandit® Works (video) to learn more.

Is Sun Bandit® right for me?

Sun Bandit® allows citizens of the world the ability to use the FREE energy of the sun to minimize or eliminate the use of fossil fuel to heat water. Sun Bandit® is an environmentally friendly choice as it requires no toxic fluids, has no motors or pumps, makes no noise, and emits no harmful gasses or contaminants into your living environment. Sun Bandit® is a good choice for you and a great choice for the environment. There is a Sun Bandit® for everyone.

See Sun Bandit® Calculator to learn more.

Which Sun Bandit® is best for me?

Choosing your Sun Bandit® could not be easier. Go to the Sun Bandit® Calculator and select the state you live in, the size of Sun Bandit®  Water Heater, Sun Bandit® Power Package and our calculator will provide to you the estimated amount of Sun Bandit® daily hot water production.

The average household uses about 20 gallons of hot water per person for the first 2 occupants and 15 gallons for each additional occupant per day.

Note: The information provided is an estimate based on 280W Modules at a 23 deg tilt facing due South and average irradiance levels. Monthly variances may change based on location. Array performance is based on NREL TMY3 data. This is not a guarantee of performance but rather an estimate of Sun Bandit® capabilities.

Will Sun Bandit® work on cold, cloudy or rainy days?

Yes, because Sun Bandit® uses PV modules as the primary source of energy, it works equally well throughout the year. In fact, Sun Bandit® works even better on cold days because of inherent PV module efficiencies. Sun Bandit® just needs the sun to rise for it to work. When not enough sunlight is available, the standard electric water heating element on the grid side serves as a backup to provide hot water. You can depend on Sun Bandit® for hot water production on even cold, windy rainy days when you want it the most.

See How Sun Bandit® Works (video) to learn more.

Will Sun Bandit® work when the electricity goes out?

Yes, Sun Bandit® micro-grid technology allows it to work with or without grid connection and requires no net meter or utility approval. Because Sun Bandit® requires no net meter, it works regardless of grid power to provide hot water during a power outage.

See How Sun Bandit® Works (video) to learn more.

WARNING! There MUST be water in the Sun Bandit® Hybrid Water Heater to use any resistive element(s). If your water supply is fed by a well the pump will likely fail during a power outage, therefore, you need to be careful not to drain the water heater and try to power the resistive element(s).


How much hot water will Sun Bandit® produce?

Hot water production is based on many variables including geographic location, orientation and tilt of the PV modules, water supply temperature, and consumption patterns.

Use the Sun Bandit® Calculator to estimate approximately how much hot water a Sun Bandit® will produce for you.

What’s included in a Sun Bandit® kit?

There are two types of Sun Bandit® kits available — Sun Bandit® SBES and Sun Bandit® SB.

Sun Bandit® SBES Includes main components necessary for Sun Bandit® installation. This includes PV modules, Sun Bandit® AC Micro-Grid Inverter, rooftop mounting hardware, Sun Bandit® AC Micro-Grid Disconnect, electrical roof flashing with junction box, and the Sun Bandit® Water Heater with mixing valve and integrated controls. Miscellaneous materials will be required to complete the wiring of the PV modules and plumbing of the tank to the supply lines.

Sun Bandit® SB includes Sun Bandit® AC Micro-Grid Inverter and Sun Bandit® Water Heater with mixing valve and integrated controls. Sun Bandit® SB allows you to match or choose you own modules that meet Sun Bandit® AC Micro-Grid Inverters requirements and racking to accommodate your needs.

See What’s Included to learn more.

Can I install Sun Bandit® myself?

Sun Bandit® is designed to be simple and easy to install. It is recommended that your Sun Bandit® system be installed by qualified professional(s) with the necessary skills. Check with Authorities Having Jurisdiction (AHJ) in your area to ensure compliance with local code and regulations regarding the installation of your Sun Bandit®. Normally required drawings have been provided for your use.

See Sun Bandit® Installation Manuals to learn more.

What kind of maintenance does Sun Bandit® require?

Sun Bandit® requires very little maintenance. Follow manufacturers operating and maintenance procedures and your Sun Bandit® will operate worry-free for years to come.

See Sun Bandit® Installation, Operation and Maintenance Manual to learn more.

Do I need to change any settings on Sun Bandit® if I am away from home for an exteneded period of time?

Normally No. With a Sun Bandit® system you are saving money while away from home by letting Sun Bandit® Micro-Grid Technology maintain water temperature at the tank with the FREE energy from the sun.

How do I get the most out of Sun Bandit®?

Your Sun Bandit® will heat water during the day when there is sunlight available storing the energy for later use. Ultimately, aligning your hot water consumption synergistically with the storage patterns will ensure that you maximize your free energy from Sun Bandit®. However, Sun Bandit® is designed to work with minimal input or consumer behavior patterns by maximizing the sun’s free energy first.

Can I use Sun Bandit® with my existing natural gas or propane water heater?

Yes, Sun Bandit® can be used with all types of fossil fuel systems. However, it is our opinion that a properly sized Sun Bandit® electric SBES kits are the most cost effective and efficient way to heat hot water for the majority of the world’s population. This is due to the fact that regardless of what you are paying to heat your hot water now, and in the future, a properly sized Sun Bandit® system will provide a large portion of your needs FREE for the life of the system. No fossil fuel delivery issues, or supply issues — ever!

See Sun Bandit® Preheat Mechanical Example to learn more.

Is Sun Bandit® compliant with NEC 690.12 Rapid Shutdown requirements?

Yes, Sun Bandit® is compliant with NEC 690.12 Rapid Shutdown requirements.

Sun Bandit® micro grid technology uses AC Micro-Grid Inverters to provide module level maximum power point tracking and convert the DC input from the PV modules to an AC output that is sent to the water heater.

When starting, the AC Micro-Grid Inverters check to verify that the circuit is closed and that an appropriate resistance is connected. The inverters do not begin exporting power until those conditions are met. When the circuit is opened, the inverters instantly cease exporting power and wait until the closed circuit and appropriate resistance return. In other words, there is no power or voltage present on the AC side of the AC Micro-Grid Inverters when the circuit is opened.

The inverters are typically located directly underneath the modules which means that an outdoor, readily accessible disconnect meets the functionality required in NEC 690.12.

Click to read the Sun Bandit Compliance with NEC 690.12 Rapid Shutdown document.

 

Can I use Sun Bandit® with a boiler hot water based heating system?

Yes, there are several ways to do this.

See Sun Bandit® Preheat Mechanical Example to learn more.

Can I use Sun Bandit® with a tankless water heater?

Yes, depending upon the manufacture and specific model, Sun Bandit® is an ideal preheat solution for tankless water heaters. By using the FREE energy of the sun first to preheat the water, Sun Bandit® increases the flow rate and reduces or eliminates the run time of tankless water heating systems. This may also increase the life of the tankless water heater, assuming other parameters are equal.

See Sun Bandit® Preheat Mechanical Example to learn more.

I just bought a new water heater. Can I adapt Sun Bandit® technology without removing my existing water heater?

Yes, Sun Bandit® can be used as a preheat to existing systems which would greatly expand the capacity and delivery rates of your existing water heater. Assuming you have space for an additional water heater, this can be done regardless of the fossil fuel type of your existing water heater.

See Sun Bandit® Preheat Mechanical Example to learn more.

Can Sun Bandit® SBES System be used off grid?

Yes, Sun Bandit® can be sized to provide 100% off your hot water needs off grid. Sun Bandit® Micro-Grid technology works regardless of the grid, and has no interface to the grid on the Sun Bandit® side.

See How Sun Bandit® Works (video) to learn more.

Do I need a net meter to install Sun Bandit®?

No, Sun Bandit® Micro-Grid technology works regardless of the grid and has no interface to the grid on the Sun Bandit® side.

See How Sun Bandit® Works (video) to learn more.

How does Sun Bandit® compare to traditional solar water heating or heat pump systems?

Sun Bandit® rules! Sun Bandit® has no chemicals, no pumps, no line sets, no pipes, no heat exchangers, no transfer fluids. It makes no noise and there is no need to dump heat or cold into the environment (or building). It works just as efficiently in all temperature extremes from hot deserts to extreme cold. Sun Bandit®  is simply the world’s best choice for capturing the FREE energy of the sun to heat water

See How Sun Bandit® Works (video) to learn more.

What kind of warranty comes with SunBandit®?

Sun Bandit® SBES kits are warrantied for a period of 10 years. We feel our warranty is the best in the industry.

See Product Warranty to learn more, then Register your Sun Bandit® >>

Does Sun Bandit® qualify for tax credits and incentives?

The entire cost of a SunBandit® system, including the total cost of installation, may qualify for current 30% Federal tax credit as a qualified solar electric property cost that generates solar electricity for your home as stated on IRS Form 5695 (please consult your tax professional). Additional financial incentives may be available through other State and utility sponsored programs. Visit www.dsireusa.org to find out what incentives may be available in your area.
IMPORTANT: this information is meant to make you aware of the potential benefits associated with the purchase of your SunBandit® system. It is not intended to be considered tax advice. Please seek professional advice from a qualified tax advisor to check the applicability and eligibility before claiming any tax benefits or exemptions.

How much does it cost to operate Sun Bandit®?

Sun Bandit® is designed to heat water for FREE. Because of it’s patent pending technology, Sun Bandit® will continue to provide FREE hot water for the entire life of the system. Regardless of what you are paying for fossil fuel to heat your water now, Sun Bandit® captures the FREE energy of the sun to deliver clean, efficient, dependable hot water day after day, year after year.

See How Sun Bandit® Works (video) to learn more.

Where can I buy Sun Bandit®?

Visit Pricing for details.

Are the Sun Bandit® systems FSEC certified?

Yes, the Sun Bandit® SBES kits are FSEC certified.  Click to view the certifications.  Please note that the SBES-XXX-300 and SBES-XXX-400 kits are made up of two individual electrical circuits, each of which has been certified by FSEC.

Can the Sun Bandit® Hybrid Water Heaters provide different hot water outlet temperatures for different applications?

Yes, Sun Bandit® Hybrid Water Heaters include a high quality, easy to install mix valve that includes a port for untempered hot water.  Click to view the Mix Valve technical specifications.

WARNING! Water temperatures over 120ºF can cause serious injury.

Can the Sun Bandit® Hybrid Water Heaters be used with domestic water systems that incorporate a recirculation pump?

Yes, the mix valve included with Sun Bandit® Hybrid Water Heaters includes a dedicated port for connection to a recirculation line.  Click to view the Mix Valve technical specifications.  Sun Bandit® can also greatly reduce or eliminate fossil fuel costs associated with reheating water that has cooled in the recirculation loop.

How does the Sun Bandit® Hybrid Water Heater provide more hot water than a conventional water heater without added cost?

Sun Bandit® patent pending micro-grid technology captures the FREE energy of the sun to provide FREE usable hot water.  Sun Bandit® is designed to use the sun’s free energy first to establish a baseline amount of stored hot water.  With appropriate thermostat settings the Sun Bandit® can then continue heating the stored water throughout the day.  A fully heated tank will mix free hot water from the sun with cold water at the mix valve.  This functionality can provide a much greater first hour rating than conventional water heaters without expending additional fossil fuel. 

See How Sun Bandit® Works (video) and the Sun Bandit® Hybrid Water Heater spec sheet for more information.

Is an external disconnect required by code for Sun Bandit® Systems?

No, there is no NEC code section that requires a disconnect external to the building or at the same location as the utility disconnect.  Article 690.56 of the NEC states that facilities with stand-alone photovoltaic power systems should have a permanent plaque or directory on the exterior of the building that indicates the location of the system disconnecting means.

Can Sun Bandit® Water Heaters be plumbed in parallel?

Yes, Sun Bandit® water heaters can be plumbed in parallel to increase storage or solar input for virtually any application.  When the water heaters are plumbed in parallel they behave like a single, larger water heater.  Click to view the Parallel Sun Bandit® Water Heaters - Preheat Schematic.

The Sun Bandit® Monitor screen is flashing, what does this mean?

The Sun Bandit® Monitor screen may flash when the circuit is open, this does not indicate a fault condition and likely means the water heater has been heated to the set point temperature.