Please help! Wood stove questions

Discussion in 'Homesteading Questions' started by Jennifer Anne, Sep 27, 2005.

  1. Jennifer Anne

    Jennifer Anne New Member

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    Hello,

    I am completely overwhelmed at the moment! I am trying to find out some information on woodstoves and there is an awful lot online- but I haven't found anything pertinent to my situation yet.

    I am in the process of building a house, and of course, every dollar counts. The house is one story and about 950 square feet. I'm looking to get a woodstove, which will sit in the middle of the house and be used to heat the living room and kitchen (the house is shaped like a thin rectangle, not a square). The other rooms will be fairly closed off to the stove; heat will be supplemented in the bathroom by a space heater to be turned off when no one's bathing. I live in North Carolina, so there are only two really cold months. I have two questions:

    Can anyone recommend a stove size/brand/type?

    Is it feasible to think that I can use dead wood from the surrounding woods to fuel this stove?

    Any advice - ANY- will be much appreciated!
    Thanks-
    Jennifer Anne
     
  2. Nor'easter

    Nor'easter New Member

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    Hi Jennifer Anne -

    I was raised in my parents house with burning wood for heat in the Northeast.

    I recently bought a wood stove for my house.

    I bought an Englander wood stove from The Home Depot. This will be my third season with it and so far I'm happy with it.

    My house is about 1200 square feet and this stove heats all of it (the stove is located on the north side of my house not in the center where I understand you would like to put yours, the center is a better location) my stove heats the whole house with out a blower or any fans. We get some pretty cold weather up here and this stove is able to handle it in stride. I don't bother closing off rooms as we have plenty of heat.

    I will caution you on the cost of the stove, the one I bought was around $600.00 this is about a third of what it will cost to get it up and running unless you can vent the smoke through a fire place. (I had to use tripple wall stainless steel stove pipe because I vented through an exterior wall (very expensive).

    Also follow your building codes and have it inspected as most insurance companies will not cover fire damge if the system was not inspected by the local building / fire offical. The insurance companies will also hit you with a surcharge on your fire policy because of the stove.

    As far as burning wood found laying around, I would first make sure it is hard wood not pine. Pine will cause a lot of problems with creosote build up in the vent piping and it is flamable. I've seen many a house fire caused by someone burning pine.

    This late in the season you may want to buy some wood and start cutting trees for next years stock pile now.

    Cut and splt wood will generally dry in about six months but, if you drop a tree and leave it to cut up later, it will need about a year to dry.

    One last thing. CLEAN YOUR STOVE PIPE AND FLU. Do it at least once or twice a year. depending on the quality of the wood you are using.

    Hope this helps.

    Nor'easter.
     

  3. RedneckPete

    RedneckPete Well-Known Member

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    Pine is just fine to burn, in fact the coldest areas of North America (Northern Canada and Eastern Alaska) burn almost nothing but pine, spruce and other soft conifers.

    The proplems you are seeing have nothing to do with the species of wood being burned.

    Pete
     
  4. Jennifer Anne

    Jennifer Anne New Member

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    Thanks so much Nor'easter, I appreciate the time you took to write back.
    Your advice is esp. helpful because the walls and siding are not up in the house yet, and there's a chance that planning for a stove in advance may cut the total cost of installation. However the cost of gas is so outrageous in my area that I could save $1800 in heating bills in the first couple of years! I will check out Englander stoves, it would be great to find one locally.
     
  5. Jennifer Anne

    Jennifer Anne New Member

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    Thanks Pete. Actually the forest I live in is mostly deciduous, although there is a lot of dead cedar around. If you happen to know anything risky about cedar, let me know!
    Take care,
    Jennifer Anne
     
  6. peri_simmons

    peri_simmons Well-Known Member

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    Lehman's .com It is in Ohio but they have a great catalog that sells woodstoves. They sell to the local Amish community here. My Dh and I went to the store this summer they have wonderful stuff. One thing that I noticed about the wood stoves is they have all price ranges..The least expensive one I saw is made in an Amish backyard. It is not as pretty as a Waterford or some of the most expensive ones. But I saw it in person and it is great for the money. :baby04:
     
  7. JennDBass

    JennDBass Wannab crunchy mama

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    My stove is heating about 800 sq feet. You will need a smaller stove because a larger stove will heat up fast and roast the room it is in. My stove is a Jotul f 100 and it is little and can fit in ANY area! They have the best clearances out there! (Which is how close it can be to a combustable surface) and no I don't work for them. They are one of the largest stove manufacturers in the world and are specifically made for small spaces!

    Here is there web site:

    http://www.jotulflame.com/index.html

    Good luck!
     
  8. JennDBass

    JennDBass Wannab crunchy mama

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  9. Explorer

    Explorer Well-Known Member Supporter

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    It is important to tell the sales person the stove will only be use to heat about 500 sqft.
     
  10. Nancy in Maine

    Nancy in Maine Well-Known Member

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    We have an Englander that we just bought last year. It has a blower and works pretty good. Only problem we had with it last year is that it really ate up the wood! We're going to put a flue damper and a heat exchanger on it this year and see if we can't get it to be a bit more economical.

    But the best stove I've ever owned is a Temp Wood. My grandmother bought this in the 70's. She gave it to me in the late 80's - early 90's and it is the BEST stove! If it was centrally located it would heat the whole house. (2000 sq ft) It's not the largest model they made and I don't even know if the company still exists (I'll check), but I highly reccommend this stove. Grammie wrote in her journal that she and Grampa shopped around for a stove to heat their house with. This one, she wrote, cost a bit more, but it was worth it. She was right. The ONLY thing I would change about this stove I would have an ash clean out drawer in the bottom (like the Englander furnace). As it is, you have to let the fire go out cold and clean the ashes from the only access, on the top.

    Sorry, I'm having no luck finding a site for TempWood. If you can find a second hand one in good condition, take it! It holds a fire all night. We don't even have a damper in the chimney. There are 2 top draft dampers....this stove is effiecient! I just can't say enough good about it.

    Anybody else out there with a TempWood?

    The thing I like about the Englander is it blows all the heat off. There is an air space between the firebox and the outside of the stove. You can put your hand on it-you could set your coffee cup on it and your coffee will get cold! It blows all that heat into our duct work. Or it will once we keep half the heat from going up the chimney.

    The other stove I have I also would recommend, but not for any practical reason. I have an old old cookstove. It start up hard--smoking and the firebox is about the size of a thinble (not much of an exageration), but I love that old stove. anything I cook in it is far superior to my modern propane range. And what a nice cozy feeling it offers. My older daughter sat with her feet in the oven, reading her books last winter. You can't beat that. I bought my second hammock chair to go in front of that stove this winter. Oh, am I going to be in heaven!
     
  11. BlueRidge

    BlueRidge Well-Known Member

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    Cedar is terrific firewood. Burns hot & clean. I'd love to have 5 or 6 cords of it!

    Don't be afraid of good, dry, pine. It's not THAT dangerous, considering that it's probably the most burned wood by a wide margin. :) It DOES have more resins in it than most hardwoods, but if you have your chimney cleaned as often as once or twice a year (does anybody really do twice a year???? :eek: ), you won't have any problem with creosote buildup.


    BTW, if you decide to buy wood, be aware that there are a lot of names for the way wood is sold: face cord, rick, etc.

    None of these means ANYTHING. The only legally defined unit of measure for firewood is the CORD, and a cord is a tightly stacked pile measuring 4 feet by 4 feet by 8 feet. (That's 128 cubic feet.) Nothing less is a cord, and no other term is legally enforceable. Other terms may be COMMON in your area, but they are not legal terms.
     
  12. RedneckPete

    RedneckPete Well-Known Member

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    Cedar is a great firewood. I save the cedar I get for starting the fire. I often throw in a piece or two before the hardwood to really get the flame going again.

    Cedar is low energy per cord (one of the softest woods out there) but the ease of burn and almost complete lack of ash still makes is a great wood, especially for the flash burns you want early and late in the season, and starting your fire all year long.

    I use nothing but for kindling.

    Pete
     
  13. mrglock27

    mrglock27 Well-Known Member

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    I have a country model 310, the biggest they make. It heats my 2,776 sq. feet pretty good. It has a fan mounted on the back so when it gets nice and hot i turn it on, then I turn on the ceiling fan in my kitchen and flip the switch too reverse the direction so it sucks air up instead of blowing it down. That sucks the heat up stairs really good. I hardly use my electric heaters, but it only gets about 20 degrees in the winter here in western WA. I have 5 acres of trees and brush, the cotton wood is great for kindling, I burn mostly doulas fir, hemlock, and alder for logs. My house is 2 stories and the piping has to be 3 feet over the roof for code so the double insulated pipe cost 1,500 bucks the stove was about 2,500 with all the upgrades, (etched glass, nickel plated legs), and the marbel hearth was 500.