Natural Gas Space Heater

Discussion in 'Homesteading Questions' started by Nick53, Jan 14, 2004.

  1. Nick53

    Nick53 Well-Known Member

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    Hello all, I'm considering going and taking a look at a house that has old vented natural gas space heaters as the main heat source. My question is how many people utilize gas space heaters as a main heat source, and what part of the U.S. are you in. I'm here in Wisconsin, and our winters can get pretty cold!! If I would be interested in purchasing the house after taking a walk through I would probably intall new space heaters as an economical alternative to putting in a central heating system. Another question that comes to mind is insurance. In August of this past year I had looked at a house which had a space heater too. My insurance lady who I have health and auto insurance through told me they wouldn't even insure a place with only space heaters. Didn't really explore the insurance issue any further due to the fact that I wasn't real thrilled with the condition of the property and the amount of $$$ to fix it up. Oh, this house is about 800 sq. ft. as well. Sorry about the length of this thread, and thanks in advance for any and all responses.

    Nick

    ps. here is the link I found for a possible replacement to the old space heaters in the place. (Haven't been in the place, just was told that the heaters are old.)
    http://www.kennspenns.com/heating/wil~hearth.html
     
  2. deberosa

    deberosa SW Virginia Gourd Farmer!

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    I owned a 1200 sq ft cinder block house built on a slab that had three natural gas wall heaters. I really liked them. I could control the temp in different parts of the house. I seldom used one of them. It was cheap and kept that kind of a place very warm. Oh - this house had been recently remodeled with double pane windows and insulation in the attic also.

    This was in Denver. The only problem I had was first in getting the house and then in selling the house because the idiot bankers in Denver acted like they never heard of space heat, so that might be a consideration also. In WA space heat is not a big deal, guess it depends on the area.


     

  3. BCR

    BCR Well-Known Member

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    From all the other discussions on here about gas space heaters you probably realize that it is good they are vented since they are your only heat. My space heater and firplace are unvented and are on as I need them. We love them. They heat up quickly. Find out what BTUs yours are....that is more accurate a way than just listening to us on line. My little heater is 10,000 and puts out a lot of heat. The fireplace goes up to 30,000 I believe.
     
  4. Jena

    Jena Well-Known Member

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    When I lived in Southern California, wall heaters were very common.

    I haven't seen one here in the midwest at all.

    They worked well out there, even when I lived where it got relatively cold at night (20's). They are more costly to run, depending on if they are hooked to a thermostat or not. Some are simply "off or on", some have a small dial at the bottom of the heater you set as a thermostat. I've had them where they were wired into wall thermostats like any other heater.

    I would check into the past utility bills of the house just to make sure they aren't real expensive in a colder climate.

    Jena
     
  5. TexasMom

    TexasMom Member

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    I grew up with space heaters - they worked pretty well as I recall, but the winters are usually short in Texas. Some of the houses out here (West Texas) have the wall type space heaters that operate off propane. But the kind I'm assuming you are talking about are the ones that are somewhat portable, and hook up with a hose to a gas jet in each room. Like I said, I grew up using them and so did most everyone I knew, but they are considered dangerous now. Every year you'll hear about one or two tragic fires "caused by a space heater". It may be because the ones in use now are mainly older models, and not in good shape, I don't know. I would be very cautious - and in addition to smoke alarms get some of the gas detector alarms, too.
    Linda
     
  6. mikell

    mikell Well-Known Member

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    Here in Michigan several of my rentals have them. I prefer the vented ones because the unvented seem to make the windows filmy and if the windows are filmy what else is. We have one in our house for backup because it requires no power.


    mikell
     
  7. Kirk

    Kirk Well-Known Member

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    The house we just bought this fall has two vented space heaters. I think I would like to go to a regular propane furnace. The heat doesnt circulate well and we have to leave bedroom doors open to stay warm at night. On the plus side they do work well enough that we can live with them for a few years until we decide to upgrade.
    Kirk
     
  8. FolioMark

    FolioMark In Remembrance

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    illinois but i have a homestead building in missou
    I have a big old victorian that had an old style gravity hot air furnace that finally gave up the ghost 3 years ago. Upstairs had a gas wall furnace and we installed two gas wall fireplaces downstairs and that is all we use for heat. Its not particularly efficient I suppose, but it keeps us warm and was sure a lot cheaper than installing a whole new furnace and duct work.
     
  9. Nick53

    Nick53 Well-Known Member

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    Thank you all very much!! Those of you who currently utilize this type of heat what insurance companies do you do business with? I had checked with American Family and they wouldn't touch a property with space heaters with a ten foot pole (or at least that's the way the agent made it sound). Thank you again.
     
  10. BCR

    BCR Well-Known Member

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    Try State Farm. And consider asking American Family if they would insure you if you replaced the units with vented wall units. The 10000 BTU ones go for about $125 here, a fireplace (30000 BTU) at the end of heating season can be bought for under $300.