Fireplace insert vs free standing woodstove

Discussion in 'Homesteading Questions' started by wyndchym, Oct 17, 2004.

  1. wyndchym

    wyndchym Active Member

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    We plan to heat our new 24x40 ranch primarily with wood, using a propane furnace for backup only. What are the pros and cons for using a fireplace with a woodstove insert, versus using a free standing woodstove for our primary heat? If we go with the insert we prefer to use fans powered by the heat, instead of using the insert’s blower, as described in this thread from January: http://homesteadingtoday.com/showthread.php?t=38182&highlight=fireplace+insert+wood+stove

    Thank you.
     
  2. Cabin Fever

    Cabin Fever Life NRA Member since 1976 Supporter

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    A freestanding woodstove is going to be much more efficient than an insert.
     

  3. Jen H

    Jen H Well-Known Member

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    Are you building a new house, or moving into a home already on the premises?

    If you're moving into a house that already has a fireplace, then go with the insert. Might as well use the chimney that's already in place.

    If you're building new, I'd go with a free-standing stove. You'll get better radiant heat with it.
     
  4. jassytoo

    jassytoo Well-Known Member Supporter

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    I'd go with the freestanding stove. You can cook on it as a backup. I've done lots of cooking on ours during power outages.
     
  5. UpstateNY

    UpstateNY Active Member

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    again, just my two cents. I am not sure where you live or prices, but I have a free standing coal stove and have been loving it for 10 years now. I grew up with wood stoves and cut, dragged split and stacked a lot of wood. If you have yor own woods and are going to cut your own then great go wood. (it is hard to mine your own coal even if you have the location.) I do not have a wood lot where I live so I was looking at buying either way, wood or coal. Pa. is close, Scanton is an hour away and I have a couple places to get coal. The cost is comparable and has stayed very stable over the last ten years (ahhh damn I just jinxed that). I use just the regular antracite coal, I have not seen the new Bush "clean coal". It puts out great steady heat, holds longer and is cleaner around the stove. (coal dust and stray stuff yea, but not as much bark, chips and sdirt as wood. Did I mention the heat? The heat is a steady glowing heat for hours and hours. The colder it gets the better the coal burns. I worried about the appearance of coal, glowing coals verse flames on wood. Even that I found to be nicer then wood. The coals glow with little bluw whisps of flame then just glowing warm red. very peace and good for reading next to. So if you are going to have to buy, check out coal. If your are cutting your own and can do the work go wood. Go free standing, much more heat, water boiling surface (gotta keep that humidity up in the winter) and boot drying area around the back. Good luck
     
  6. agmantoo

    agmantoo agmantoo Supporter

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    Free standing will yield much more of the heat rather than sending it up the chimney. If you must go with the insert insist that it has a blower/fan.
     
  7. CarlaWVgal

    CarlaWVgal Well-Known Member

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    I would go with a freestanding woodstove too. Our first house we installed a small woodstove and it would run you out of the room, it got so hot. Our house now has a fireplace, and dh's grandmother gave us her insert (20 years old and never used) for free. It heats our living room and might keep the chill off upstairs. The only upside is it takes up less space.

    Carla