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Old 08.07.2009, 10:31
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Can I use (purely) solar to melt snow on my drive?

During depths of winter, may I / could I use (purely) solar to power external underground heating under the drive to melt / keep snow free?

I can understand powering from grid would be forbidden, but from solar?
In winter it's often quite sunny and using just the sun's energy would be greener than using a petrol snowblower, not use any mains power, not need any manual effort, not have slippy patches etc.

Anyone know if it would work technically / practically? Would I need water pipes heated by a water based panel or use electric solar panel/cables? Obviously the panels themselves would need keeping free of snow...

If not solar could I heat using wood?

In Oslo they have such warming cables/pipes (can't remember) under the pedestrian areas in the city centre to keep snow / ice free in winter. There's also a road bridge near Bern where the heat is collected in summer to melt ice in winter...

I live in Hirzel and while not in the mountains (only 720m) gets significantly more snow than say areas around lake Zürich, and having a snow / ice free drive would be great.

Last edited by Glendyn; 08.07.2009 at 11:37. Reason: edited title to be more clear
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drive, electricity, snow, solar

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