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Heating with wood burners/fire places only?

Discussion in 'How To Save Energy' started by sumi, Nov 11, 2015.

  1. Nov 20, 2015
    sumi

    sumi Sustainability Master Administrator

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    DH and I decided to start looking for a chainsaw and possibly a log splitter as well. We are going through a fair amount of wood at the moment, trying to keep the house warm and hand sawing and splitting logs to keep up with the need is getting very time consuming! The weather turned fowl on us a few days ago, with this massive storm passing (storm Barney), it's been raining loads and it's freezing outside and in (to my pampered bod anyway ;) )
     
  2. Nov 20, 2015
    McCulloch610

    McCulloch610 Power Conserver

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    You'd be going through much less wood if it was seasoned ;) If you are cutting, splitting, and throwing it right into the firebox you're getting lots of water vapor and creosote and not much heat. Well seasoned wood (less than 20% moisture content) will give you many more BTUs per cubic foot of wood. Get through this winter however you can (and keep that chimney clean) and try to work on getting 1-2 years ahead during the spring and summer. It's no fun burning green wood!
     
  3. Nov 20, 2015
    sumi

    sumi Sustainability Master Administrator

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    Thankfully most of the wood we've been using is seasoned, but we did scavenge for some that is a bit green still. When we have time and opportunity we are definitely going to get more picky about what we're burning and I'm planning to be much more organised for next winter!

    You mentioned keeping the chimney clean. I've seen some products you can burn in your stove/fireplace that is supposed to clean the chimney, but I'm unfamiliar with those. Do they work, or is it just a gimmick?
     
  4. Nov 20, 2015
    McCulloch610

    McCulloch610 Power Conserver

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    Definitely stay away from those. The only proper way to clean a chimney is with a brush. I have a brush sized to fit my 6" stainless chimney and a set of 4' long fiberglass rods that are threaded 1/4" NPT on each end. I just get up on the roof, pop my cap off, insert the brush, and screw in the rods as I go. When I hit bottom I start pulling it up, removing rods as I go, and that's it. I pull the creosote out of the bottom and that's it. I think the brush and rods cost me $60 total.
     
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  5. Nov 20, 2015
    sumi

    sumi Sustainability Master Administrator

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    Thanks! How often do you clean the chimney?
     
  6. Nov 21, 2015
    Denim Deb

    Denim Deb More Precious than Rubies

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    They should be cleaned at least 1x a year.
     
  7. Nov 21, 2015
    sumi

    sumi Sustainability Master Administrator

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    Thanks! Never having had a fireplace of any kind inside before I'm still learning here :)
     
  8. Dec 3, 2015
    wyoDreamer

    wyoDreamer Almost Self-Reliant

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    We heated mostly with wood for 7 years in Wyoming. The house we bought had a woodstove already installed and we added a second one. The first one was installed in the corner of the dining room, not the best location but it was there so we made do. We had to use a fan to get the heat to other areas of the upstairs, like into the bedroom, but we loved the warmth. The house had a propane forced-air furnace, that we used as a back-up. after adding the second woodstove in the basement, we burned about 8 cord of wood a winter and kept the house toasty warm.
    IMG_3430.JPG this is the dining room stove. The same model of stove was installed in the basement.
     
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  9. Dec 3, 2015
    wyoDreamer

    wyoDreamer Almost Self-Reliant

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    We purchased an old farmstead when we moved to Wisconsin. It is farmland, so no real supply of firewood. This house had a big old fireplace in the livingroom so we installed a pellet insert with a thermostat.
    insert.jpg
    It is helping to cut our heating bill and does a great job of heating the main living area. however, the design of the house does not really allow for transfer of radient heat to the kitchen, bathroom and mudroom areas so we moved the thermostat for the furnace to the hallway by the bathroom and shut the furnace vents to the main areas where the pellet stove will heat.
    We have to buy pellets, but we don't have to buy firewood. Our intention is to grow old here and we feel that our age will soon limit our ability to cut firewood so we opted for the ease of pellets.
     
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  10. Dec 3, 2015
    Denim Deb

    Denim Deb More Precious than Rubies

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    I think someone forgot to tell my dad that! At 86, he's still cutting and splitting firewood!
     
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