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Home heating alternatives

Discussion in 'The Lounge' started by Pookster, Oct 22, 2004.

  1. Pookster

    Pookster 1/2 ton status

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    Listened to the radio this morning- Seems like they believe there will be a shortage of home heating fuel.

    How many of you have played with the idea of pellet stoves, waste oil furnaces, etc? Anyone a HVAC expert?

    im trying to find a way to heat for cheap, but.. still working on it... Any ideas?
     
  2. Muddytazz

    Muddytazz 1 ton status

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    My parents place is close to 5800 sq. feet and they have a pellet stove. They figure it out one year to be about $2.70/day to heat that house in the winter. Now Oregon is a lot different than New York, but its just a thought.
     
  3. newyorkin

    newyorkin 1 ton status

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    Do'nt you have a pellet stove already? I remember you making a thread about this way back.

    We have a fireplace in the living room, other than that, oil burner for the steam heat. We still have the original 20's boiler down in the basement, maybe I can reconnect it to the steam pipes with a valve as an alternate, just go down and throw a couple logs in it during the night /forums/images/graemlins/rotfl.gif /forums/images/graemlins/rotfl.gif.
     
  4. Pookster

    Pookster 1/2 ton status

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    Dude! ya remember!!!!!

    Yeah, I couldnt convince my parents to do it! They are kinda those, "Fires must be outside!". Some guy out in the midwest had the same idea as me, and he manufactures these giant boilers that heat water and pump it inside the house. His of course uses wood logs. I wanted mine to use just about anything I could throw at it. Unforuntely, my parents still have a full steam system so its not really a "plug and play" setup.

    The idea I was playing with was a forced air furnace of sorts- A small 2x2 insulated metal box, cooled by a water jacket- Which would then pump into the house. I dont really care to heat the whole house, thats too wasteful, but if I can just do the family room, that would be cool.

    I have found this out about pellets- They are clean burning, but they require forced air to blow on them, otherwise, they just go out. But they are damn cool. The other issue is of course, the built ones have a storage bin, which automatically drops down pellets to burn. I havent figured out exactly how to do that yet- So if any of you have an augar idea or know where I can get one cheap, I could hook it up to a timer. /forums/images/graemlins/rotfl.gif
     
  5. jjlaughner

    jjlaughner 3/4 ton status

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    we have forced air heat, it sucks! We used to have steam/baseboard heat and it was a hell of a lot better. When i build me a house I'll do radiant floor heating ont he forst floor and baseboard heat on the second floor. Now what to use to heat the water /forums/images/graemlins/thinking.gif Probley a cross between gas water heater and some form of solar heat /forums/images/graemlins/smirk.gif
     
  6. Storm Trooper

    Storm Trooper 1/2 ton status GMOTM Winner

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    The best heat you can have is in-floor radiant heating.
    I install just about any kind of heat you can think of.
    I did a house once for a guy that worked for the forest service. He could get all the wood he wanted for free so he wanted to heat with it. It was about a 5000 sq. ft. house.
    We installed a wood stove with two heating coils in it that circulated water through the coils and the large one heated a 500 gal. storage tank and the small one heated his hot water. The water from the storage tank went through a heat exchanger to the system in the house that had glycol (antifreeze) in it that ran through individual fan coil units in each room. By having a storage tank, he could build up heat in it so if he didn't stoke the fire, he would still have heat for a while or if he left. It was a very complicated system but nice. It also costs $$$$$ like anything done right. My in-floor system in my house knows what time of day it is, what the outside temp. is and regulates the temp. based on outside temp.
    If it gets to 65F outside, it shuts down completly.
    It provides hot water priority over heating and if I go on vacation, I just push a couple buttons and it turns down the whole house.
    It's not easy but you can convert steam heat to hotwater heat. It mainly depends on if you have a one or two pipe system. They make much better hotwater boilers that they do steam. You can also add energy saving controls on them to save you big bucks. see www.tekmarcontrols.com
    I'm installing this one Vitodens right now. I didn't get home from work until 9:00PM tonight /forums/images/graemlins/tongue.gif.
    I know hotwater, in-floor, forced air, solar, wood and just about any type of heating system you can think off.
    So what did you want to know?
     
  7. Thunder

    Thunder 3/4 ton status

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    I have hot water baseboard heat. It is very economical. Way better than the forced air heat in my old house.
    I also burn wood which I cut myself. Wood costs me about 35.oo a cord. Including gas and beer. I I burn around 3-4 cords a year. I can haul a cord at a time in my K5 with my trailer.

    I know a guy who is handy with a welder he built a wood stove with a water jacket.Water circulates thru the stove and He heats part of his house and a hot tub with it. It works very well and is cheap to run but he goes thru a lot of wood.

    Many people around where I live have pellet stoves. They heat cheaper than Propane,(Hank Hill Forgive me)and heating oil but cost about the same as forced air heating with natural gas. You also need a dry place to store pellets. They are cheaper to buy if you get them by the ton. You dont really save any money if you buy them by the bag. If its cold where you live its pretty easy to go thru at least 3 tons in a winter depending on how big of an area you are heating.

    I perfer wood over pellets because it warmes you 3 times better than pellets. Once when you cut it. Once when you split/stack it. Once when you burn it.
     
  8. 3 on the tree

    3 on the tree 1/2 ton status

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    Up here in the Colorado mtns. some people have forced air systems that use wood. The actual furnace is outside, with insulated ductwork for supply and return air.I love in floor radiant heat, but it does not respond very quickly to temp changes. On demand water heaters plumbed to radiators are pretty cost effective, they only heat the water when necessary, very compact,no storage tanks.
     
  9. Storm Trooper

    Storm Trooper 1/2 ton status GMOTM Winner

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    [ QUOTE ]
    I love in floor radiant heat, but it does not respond very quickly to temp changes.

    [/ QUOTE ]
    It's all how you do it. My system knows when the temp. drops and automaticly responds. Tubing in concrete is slower because of the mass that it heats up, Staple up (under the sub floor) responds slower because it has to heat through the flooring materials and 3/4" plywood.
    The best is when the tubing is put in Gyp-crete or light weight concrete. It responds very quick, feels nice on the toes and doesn't take long to heat up.
    [ QUOTE ]
    On demand water heaters plumbed to radiators are pretty cost effective, they only heat the water when necessary

    [/ QUOTE ] Only problem is that they are not designed for that purpose and can cause more problems then they are worth. Cheap, yes. Quailty, no.
    Boiler systems only heat the water when needed also.
    The boiler I'm installing right now is 94.6% efficent.
    Think of it as getting 94.6 cents out of each dollar you spend. Very hard to beat compaired to almost every other type of heating out there. Most forced air systems range in the 70-80% eff.
    BTW, I hate scorched air systems. Hot water systems are the only way to go./forums/images/graemlins/thumb.gif
     

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